The New York Power Authority (NYPA) has approved $3 million in funding to continue its zero-interest loan program for municipalities and rural electricity cooperatives interested in purchasing electric vehicles and electric vehicle charging infrastructure for their fleets.
This builds on the $8 million that have driven the authority’s Municipal and Rural Cooperative Electric Utilities Electric-Drive Vehicle program since 2003. Municipalities and rural electric cooperative utilities apply to NYPA for zero-interest financing to purchase passenger vehicles, pickup trucks, off-road specialty vehicles, and heavy-duty utility bucket trucks. The vehicles are used by utility personnel and/or their affiliated municipal agencies.
Municipalities benefit from zero-interest financing, reduced fuel costs and lower maintenance expenses, and can pass those savings on to ratepayers. The use of electric fleet vehicles also reduces greenhouse gas emissions and contributes to a safer work environment for electric utility staff due to diesel engine noise reduction.
The 47 municipalities and four rural electric cooperative utility systems that receive low-cost hydropower from NYPA are eligible to participate. The funds are recovered from participants over a period of up to three years through a surcharge to their electric bills. Since 2003, 73 clean-technology vehicles have been placed with 24 towns and villages across the state, including Fairport Electric, which acquired two vehicles through the program in 2016.