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USA: Council pulls plug on free power for electric vehicles

LIHU‘E — After hearing public concerns regarding a bill to “encourage the use” of county-owned charging stations for electric vehicles, Kaua‘i County Council members on Thursday changed language in the bill to no longer offer free charges to electric vehicles for the next six months.
A financial incentive motivates an action which otherwise might not occur without the monetary benefit, according to the online Business Dictionary. But how many local residents would feel motivated to buy a $36,000 electric vehicle because of five charging stations in Lihu‘e offering free charges for six months? And why should taxpayers pay the tab?
Those questions were raised by North Shore resident Carl Imparato.
“The proposed fee waiver is not an incentive, it’s a free gift,” said Imparato, adding that it’s wrong to give away taxpayers’ money for no legitimate purpose.
“There is no reason to give it away, it’s like putting the county’s money in a paper bag and lighting it on fire,” he said.
Imparato’s concerns were echoed by Kapa‘a residents Glenn Mickens and Ken Taylor.
Mickens said he didn’t think the county should be giving free electricity to anyone, and Taylor said it’s “ridiculous” to think that buying consumers a couple hours of electricity would be an incentive to buy a $36,000 car.
“A rebate would be an incentive,” Taylor said.


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