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USA: Electric cars buzz at parade

NASHVILLE — The world’s first LEAF electric limousine led about 60 other electric and hybrid cars in a Nashville-area parade Sunday that marked the second annual National Plug In Day.

At the end of the route, at a newly opened public charging station at Vanderbilt University, electric car owners and enthusiasts were met with supportive remarks from a state official.

Tennessee is being recognized as one of the most “plug in ready” locations in the nation, said Toks Omishakin, assistant commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Transportation.

“You don’t get a lot of political points for supporting things like this. Not yet,” Omishakin added. But he believes time will change that attitude.

Starting with Gov. Bill Haslam, state officials are very supportive of both the overall environmental benefit of plug-in vehicles and the long-term economic benefit to electric car owners, Omishakin said. But as more drivers switch to electric vehicles, state officials say they will have to find another way to replace revenues currently generated by the gas tax.
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