New York State boosts investment in EV infrastructure

Published on November 21, 2023 by Dave Kovaleski

© Shutterstock

The New York State Public Service Commission (PSC) approved significant changes to the state’s “make ready” electric vehicle program to accelerate the transition to electric vehicles.

The changes are designed to speed up the development of EV charging infrastructure to ensure that residents have access to convenient and reliable EV charging.

The commission approved a funding increase for the EV Make-Ready Program from $701 million to $1.24 billion, with $372 million in funding to support programs in disadvantaged communities. The increase reflects the plan to expand the direct current fast charging program target from 1,500 to 6,302 charging stations. It will also be used for a micro-mobility make-ready program, supporting charging infrastructure for e-bike, e-scooters, and other forms of electric mobility in disadvantaged communities.

Further, the medium- and heavy-duty make-ready pilot budget designed for commercial customers more than doubled to $58 million. And finally, the PSC approved new beneficial rates and programs for commercial EV-charging customers. Under the new programs, commercial EV-charging will be eligible for rebates or subsidies of up to 50 percent of the demand charge costs on their delivery bills.

“To reach our nation-leading climate goals, New York is energizing our transition to a clean transportation future,” New York Gov. Kathy Hochul said. “More New Yorkers are making the switch to electric vehicles, and we’re working hard to build accessible charging infrastructure across the state. The program improvements announced today will encourage more people to own EVs, helping to build a clean and sustainable future.”

Combined, the programs are expected to stimulate $4 billion in total investment in electric vehicle charging infrastructure.

“The PSC has long recognized the importance of the electrification of the transportation sector in the attainment of New York State’s climate goals. To advance these goals, the PSC has adopted policies to incentivize the development of electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure, and today’s decision moves forward with our nation-leading EV programs,” Public Service Commission Chair Rory Christian said.

Currently, there are 175,000 electric or plug-in hybrid EVs in the state with a goal approximately 3 million anticipated by 2030.

The Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) applauded the plan, saying the investment has the potential to pay for itself through increased revenue from additional charging stations.

“We commend Gov. Hochul and the Public Service Commission for continuing to prioritize vehicle charging and significantly expanding accessibility of funds to disadvantaged communities. The expansion of funds for electric vehicle charging further solidifies New York as a national leader in supporting the transition to electric vehicles, a necessary step in reaching the state’s ambitious climate goals. Environmental Defense Fund will continue to support the State through the necessary next steps in implementing and expanding medium- and heavy- duty vehicle charging infrastructure,” Pamela MacDougall, director, grid modernization strategy at EDF, said.