On May 28th the Assembly Energy and Utilities Committee held a hearing on Assembly Bill 233. The bill would allocate a little over $10 million of the Volkswagen Settlement money to fund electric vehicle charging stations in Wisconsin.
RENEW Wisconsin, Customers First! and Wisconsin Conservative Energy Forum all spoke in favor of the goal of the bill. We stressed the importance of preparing Wisconsin for the coming transition to electric vehicles, and, with our allies, made the case for using Volkswagen Settlement Funding to do so. A number of other groups testified with concerns about specific provisions that they believe need to be changed.
Representative Adam Neylon (R-Pewaukee) and Senator Robert Cowles (R-Green Bay) are the lead authors of the bill. They both agreed that the legislation needs some work but they are committed to adjusting the proposal to ensure it best serves the mission of the bill, which is to increase access to electric vehicle charging in Wisconsin.
This legislation is similar to a proposal that Governor Tony Evers put into his budget bill. RENEW is working with stakeholders and elected officials to address the details of the bill and bolster support for using $10 million of the VW Funding for electric vehicle infrastructure.
In our testimony below, we highlighted the benefits of electric vehicles, the need for fast-charging stations, and our concerns with AB 233 that we feel need to be fixed for this legislation to be passed or for it to be included in the budget bill.
There is still time to get involved! Please reach out to your legislators to support AB 233 and Governor Evers budget proposal.
For more information on the background of the Volkswagen Settlement, see previous Electric Vehicle Blogs: Volkswagen Settlement Update and “The Volkswagen Settlement” – A Big Opportunity for Electric Vehicles.