RIVERSIDE – The Board of Supervisors today endorsed an Economic Development Agency request to apply for state funding that would enable the agency to dramatically increase the number of electric vehicle charging stations available at Riverside County facilities.
The EDA will compete for a $500,000 Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Grant available through the California Energy Commission, which announced last month that it was accepting applications for a total $4 million in grant funding. Any recipient awarded funds must commit to a 25 percent match. According to the EDA, the match can include ”in-kind” contributions, such as labor.
Two years ago, the board received a $21,000 federal taxpayer-funded grant for the installation of four charging stations — three in Riverside and one in Murrieta. Since then, according to the EDA, the county has added two more.
”To date, existing EV charging stations have had almost 1,500 charging sessions, have saved over 1,400 gallons of gasoline and have removed 4.7 tons of greenhouse gases from the air in Riverside County,” EDA documents state.
The stations are run at county expense and can be accessed without charge by county employees or members of the general public.
According to the EDA, recent surveys indicated a growing interest among employees in purchasing EVs. Some respondents said they had received ”inquiries from non-employees about the availability of charging stations,” including from contract workers, doctors and others, according to the agency.
The desired grant funding would support the installation of an additional 45 charging stations, 41 of which would have the ability to charge more than one vehicle at the same time. Stations would be located at government buildings countywide.