Now that Florida's 2020 legislative session has adjourned, here’s an update on the one electric vehicle-related bill that passed.Dory Larsen | March 26, 2020
In a previous blog, we highlighted proposed legislation affecting electric vehicles (EV) filed for Florida’s 2020 legislative session. Now that session has adjourned, here’s an update on the one EV-related bill that passed.
The Lone Bill That Passed
SB 7018 — Essential State Infrastructure began as a purely EV-focused bill designed to create a master plan for DC fast-charging infrastructure along the interstate corridor system. However, during the course of the legislative process, provisions were added relating to “essential state infrastructure.”
The bill summary, as it relates to electric vehicles,
“Requires the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), in coordination with the Public Service Commission (PSC) and the Office of Energy within the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, and any other public or private entities as necessary or appropriate, to develop and recommend a master plan for the development of electric vehicle charging station infrastructure along the State Highway System. The bill sets out a number of legislative findings and sets up a division of the workload between the FDOT and the PSC of goals and objectives of the recommended plan based on area of expertise.”
As a board member of Drive Electric Florida SACE has actively supported the EV components of this bill helping to inform state leadership on the importance of increased infrastructure. SACE looks forward to working with stakeholders to ensure the goals mandated by this bill are executed strategically.
The language states the climate impacts of transportation and the benefits electric vehicles provide, stating:
“A significant portion of the carbon dioxide emissions in this state are produced by the transportation sector; Electric vehicles can help reduce these emissions, thereby helping to reduce the impact of climate change on this state.”
In addition, this legislation creates an opportunity to take action against climate change. It authorizes the aforementioned agencies to identify barriers and opportunities to advance EV adoption including legislative and policy recommendations. It also calls for building partnerships with local governments, other state and federal entities, electric utilities, the business community and the public in support of electric vehicle charging stations.
The bill requires an interim report submitted to the Governor, the President of the Florida Senate, and the Speaker of Florida’s House of Representatives by December 1, 2020, with a final report due by July 1, 2021.
Other EV Related Bills
The two other bills mentioned in our earlier piece SB 1346: Fees/Electric Vehicles (which sought to create a user fee for electric drivers) and CS/CS/SB 1154: Community Associations (which would have expanded condominium owners’ rights to install charging stations in their assigned parking spaces) both died in this legislative session, but may be reintroduced in future sessions.
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