Thursday, October 10, 2013

Free fuel for thee, but not for me!

City to give electric vehicle owners free fuel

Charging stations similar to this one have
 been  installed in downtown Toledo.
You and I  are paying for them.

I received a press release from the City of Toledo announcing a press conference to unveil their new electric vehicle charging stations:

City to unveil electric vehicle charging stations

Three stations to be available in downtown area

Mayor Michael P. Bell will unveil three electric vehicle chargers at 10 a.m., Thursday, October 10 near 347 North Superior St., the corner of Superior and Adams.

As a pilot program, motorists will pay for metered parking and can plug to the charger in at no additional cost. The city will monitor the usage to determine the need to expand the program in other locations. In total the units cost $7,200 to purchase. Installation assistance was provided through a competitively bid contract with local contractor TAS Electric.

Okay - so the city is spending $7,200 to purchase the chargers and TAS Electric got the contract to install them, for how much it didn't say.

But did you catch this? The cost to the electric vehicle user is the same and you and I would pay to park - the coins we are required to put in the meter.

The electric vehicle owner is getting their juice for free.

The City is paying the cost of the electricity used to charge the vehicles - which means you and I are paying for someone else to charge their car.

Now, when a regular vehicle owner parks downtown, no one pays him or her two hours worth of gas.

Why should electric vehicle owners get their fuel for free while you and I have to pay for our own?

Whatever happened to equal equal treatment?

Mayor Mike Bell said at the press conference that this will contribute to Toledo being a business-friendly town.

Really? What's "business-friendly" about giving some people their fuel for free while charging others for it?

A Honda Fit can go 82 miles on a fully-charged electric battery. It needs 7.25 kW-hrs to go 25 miles which means it needs 23.78 kW-hrs to fully charge the battery. According to Edmonds, the cost of charging the vehicle is 23.78 kW-Hrs times the cost of the electricity.

The cost of electricity varies and the city probably has a special rate, but my current rate is $0.064075/kwh. If I were charging a Honda Fit at home, it would cost me $1.52.

That might not seem to be very much - at first. But numerous cars will be able to plug in, each charging their battery in full, 7 days a week.

But that's not the only cost. The expense the city incurred to install the charging units also needs to be recouped, except the city isn't charging the users for that at all.

This is going to be a constant drain on taxpayers. And since it's a pilot project and Bell hopes to add more, it will be even more of drain as time goes on.

And don't forget the current controversy over the gasoline tax. Electric vehicles, because they use so much less gasoline (if at all), don't pay as much gasoline tax which is used to pay for road maintenance and repair. This has caused some to suggest a meter on vehicles to charge a fee per mile driven. So they're using the roads, but not paying as much for them as you and I.

How difficult would it be to have the users pay an extra $1.50 when they put money in the meter?

And why would the city and its elected officials think it's okay to not charge the users for the fuel they're using?

Can I park at a downtown meter and get $1.50 worth of gas? Can pull up to the city gas pump and put $1.50 worth of their gasoline in my car every day?

Can you imagine if we all demanded equal treatment when it comes to the city paying for vehicle fuel?

This is so wrong I don't know where to begin.

This is not the proper role of government and tax dollars should not be going to pay for fuel for some but not for others.

The vehicle owners need to be charged for the electricity they use and a portion of the cost of the chargers as well. Anything less is unacceptable.

1 comment:

James said...

If you park for 20 minutes and use the charging station, how much charge does the battery really get? Will it get you to your next destination? Will it get you home in time to run another charge into the battery? It doesn't seem practical to use, but I know greens and all other liberals love this, especially since it's another taxpayer ripoff.

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