Photo courtesy of Westchester County
County Executive George Latimer this week introduced legislation to require electric charging stations in all new and newly renovated county owned parking garages and lots.
“The largest challenge facing us now and for generations to come is and will be our climate,” says Latimer. “I believe that providing infrastructure to promote and support electric vehicle use will lead to improvement of the County’s air quality and reduce the County’s production of greenhouse gases.”
The proposed legislation will require parking garages and open parking lots with 250 or more parking spaces to equip 20% of their total spaces with charging stations.
The argument, according to the Director of Energy Conservation & Sustainability Peter McCartt is that, “Transportation contributes to one-third of all greenhouse gas emissions, and although we have an excellent mass-transit system here in Westchester, adding invaluable electric charging infrastructure across our county will only help us all move off of fossil fuels more quickly.”
Garages and lots with more than 250 spaces under this legislation would have to incorporate 25 level-one parking stations and 25 level-two (and level-three capable) parking stations.
Level-one charging stations provide a 120-volt connection. As such the proposed regulations would include a regular 120-volt outlet within reasonable reach of a parking space in the lot total. Level-two charging stations utilize a 240-volt connection, and charge faster, while level-three can carry even higher power ratings.
The legislation was sent to the Board of Legislators on January 21 and has now been referred to Committee.
“To deal with the climate crisis, it’s going to take thousands of large and small decisions,” Latimer says. “Those decisions aren’t going to be made by the government alone or county government alone; it’s going to be made by individuals.”