The Town of Lincoln is moving ahead with a plan for electric cars.

As part of a pilot project, the town will be installing 21 electric vehicle charging stations: nine will be placed at the Jordan Village public parking lot, four will be placed at Rotary Park, four will be placed at the municipalities’ administration offices, two will be placed at the Vineland public parking lot, and two will be placed at Charles Daley Park.

A report received by council at the committee of the whole meeting on July 31 outlines the project and council approved the business plan.

Originally the project was presented in July 2022, when council approved the funding for the project.

To fund the project, the town received a grant of $105,000 from Natural Resources Canada and the town contributed $204,000.

In this report, council approved a $2.50 hourly rate (plus HST) for usage of the chargers, and supported the operational and maintenance fees associated with the chargers.

“This project will improve zero emission vehicle infrastructure in the Town of Lincoln, through the installation of 21 electric vehicle charger connectors,” reads the report. “Aligning to council’s strategic priority of a resilient community and specifically to adapt and respond to a changing climate.”

Installation is scheduled to begin this month, with chargers expected to be operational by September.

It is estimated that the chargers will cost the town $18,063 annually to operate and maintain, and staff asked that that be included in the proposed 2024 budget. However, Michael Gacnik, the project manager, said this fee will be covered by the fees the chargers collect.

Coun. JD Pachereva took the opportunity while the report was being discussed to ask staff to come back next year with potential additional ways the chargers could generate some income for the town.

“It’s a good starting point, and I appreciate that,” he said. “But I look forward to trying to get as much revenue off this as we can to fund the other projects.”

Town chief administrative officer Mike Kirkopoulos agreed and said it’s about finding a balance between environmental stewardship and revenue generation.

“I think as we see more electric vehicles become part of the mainstream and become part of the market, I think looking at how we charge, what we charge, and how it becomes more of a revenue generator is something we’ll absolutely consider,” he said. “Right now, (we’re) still in the early stages, but definitely I think we’re going to want to report on a regular basis back to council.”

In addition to launching the chargers, the town is also launching a sponsorship program where local businesses can apply to have advertisements on the chargers.

By Abby Green, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Original Published on Aug 02, 2023 at 14:11

This item reprinted with permission from   Grimsby Lincoln News   Grimsby, Ontario
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