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State grants aim to power electric car market

On a sunny Saturday in April, Wethersfield’s Joe Booth rented a Nissan Leaf in Middlebury and steered it south to compete in the Westport Electric Car Club’s inaugural rally.

Before he could complete the 34-mile course and return the car upstate, though, he had to recharge it at least five times.

Weeks later, recalling the effort at a club meeting, he earned a mix of sympathy and admiration.

“You should give this man a pin!” a member blurted.

“He got through!” club founder Leo Cirino said.

In fact, Booth is just the sort of man on the minds of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and the governors of seven other states up and down the Atlantic and Pacific coasts. The eight state leaders signed an initiative in late October aimed at putting 3.3 million zero-emission electric and hydrogen-powered cars — or at least 15 percent of all new vehicles purchased in those states — on the roads by 2025.


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