TRENTON – Governor Phil Murphy today signed comprehensive legislation (S2252) that establishes goals and incentives for the increased use of plug-in electric vehicles and infrastructure in New Jersey. The bill also codifies the Murphy Administration’s goal of 330,000 registered light-duty electric vehicles by 2025 and directs state-owned light-duty vehicles to be electric by 2035. The legislation directs the Department of Environmental Protection and Board of Public Utilities to establish goals for the electrification of medium and heavy-duty vehicles. Additionally, NJ TRANSIT will move toward zero emission bus purchases by 2032. The legislation supports Governor Murphy’s goal of putting New Jersey on a path to a 100 percent clean energy by 2050.
“Increasing the use of electric vehicles is a critical step to secure New Jersey’s clean energy future,” said Governor Murphy. “By establishing aggressive goals and strong incentives for electric vehicles, we are repositioning our economy and state for a clean future. Today, I am proudly signing bipartisan legislation that will transform New Jersey’s transportation sector and modernize our infrastructure to support our goal of reaching 100 percent clean energy by 2050.”
The bill also directs that by December 31, 2020, and every five years thereafter, the Department of Environmental Protection is required to prepare and submit to the Governor and the Legislature a report that assesses the state of the plug-in electric vehicle market in New Jersey; measure the state’s progress toward achieving the goals outlined in the bill; identify barriers to the achievement of the goals; and make recommendations for legislative or regulatory action to address those barriers.
The legislation creates a “Light Duty Plug-in Electric Vehicle Rebate Program” to encourage the purchase of light-duty plug-in electric vehicles over a ten-year period. The rebates will provide up to $5,000 per vehicle and will be funded by approximately $30 million from the Clean Energy Fund each year. The bill authorizes the use of Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative funds as well.
Additionally, the bill grants the Board of Public Utilities the authority to also establish an incentive program for the purchase and installation of in-home electric vehicle charging equipment up to $500 per person. The bill authorizes BPU to deposit monies from the Clean Energy Fund into the newly established Plug-In Electric Vehicle Fund for these incentives in addition to the $30 million for the vehicle rebates.
“Today’s bill will put more electric vehicles on the road and keep them running throughout the Garden State,” said New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Catherine R. McCabe. “This is more than just a win for electric vehicle owners, it is a big leap forward in reducing emissions in New Jersey, giving us cleaner air and helping to reduce the damaging effects of climate change. We thank the Governor and New Jersey’s legislature for taking this bold step, leading the nation toward a greener future.”
“Thank you, Governor Murphy, for signing this legislation advancing the use of electric vehicles in the state of New Jersey, and thank you to the Legislature for passing it,” said Joseph L. Fiordaliso, President, New Jersey Board of Public Utilities. “This new law will help residents become a part of the solution in our shared fight to protect the environment and mitigate the impact of climate change. The transportation sector is one of the largest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions in our state and driving an electric vehicle is one of the best ways for a resident to take individual action to reduce their carbon footprint. I encourage everyone to take a look at this smart new incentive and consider whether they might be able to take advantage of it.”
“The New Jersey Department of Transportation, along with its sister state transportation agencies, supports the Governor’s vision of a 100 percent clean energy New Jersey by 2050,” said NJDOT Commissioner Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti. “To that end, we have started the planning process for light duty vehicle fleet conversion. The bill that Governor Murphy signs today ensures that the state’s transportation agencies will stay true to that commitment well into the future."
Primary sponsors of the legislation include Senators Bob Smith and Linda Greenstein, and Assemblymembers Daniel Benson, Nancy Pinkin, and James Kennedy.
“Given the speed at which the planet is warming, it is imperative we do all that we can to protect the environment,” said Senator Smith. “Increased usage of electric cars could greatly reduce the state’s greenhouse gas emissions and improve air quality. This would have a major positive impact in our urban communities and along high traffic corridors, improving the quality of life for many New Jerseyans.”
“Electric vehicles are the future of transportation but many people are reluctant to make the switch for a number of reasons. They cost more upfront and minimal access to charging stations creates uncertainty about their range,” said Senator Greenstein. “By offering rebates to buyers and building convenient charging stations around the state, this landmark law removes those barriers and paves the way for widespread usage of electric cars all across the state.”
“Our goal is to get more electric vehicles on the road, which in turn will result in less greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change, more local jobs to put the charging infrastructure in place, and cleaner air for our communities,” said Assemblyman Benson, chair of the Assembly Transportation Committee. “For a cleaner, healthier state, this new law will put forth strong attainable goals to increase the amount of electric vehicles and charging stations in New Jersey.”
“It is estimated that 75 billion miles are traveled on New Jersey roads every year in vehicles fueled by gasoline and diesel,” said Assemblywoman Pinkin, Chair of the Assembly Environment and Solid Waste Committee. “By promoting the use of electric vehicles under these goals, we can help make New Jersey air cleaner which would be a huge win for the environment and public health. With the climate crises we are seeing across the world, it is imperative that we move to reduce as carbon footprint as quickly as possible.”
“Incentivizing the switch to electric vehicles will not only help save money and reduce emissions, but will be critical in laying the foundation for a self-sustaining market in the long term,” said Assemblyman Kennedy. “This law ensures we are equipped to build on year-to-year successes.”
"Today is a great day for all New Jerseyan's thanks to Governor Murphy's signature of the bipartisan EV Bill," said Ed Potosnak, Executive Director of New Jersey League of Conservation Voters. "This bill helps transition families and public transportation from dirty, fossil fuel burning vehicles to clean, electric vehicles reducing air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, improving public health, and saving New Jerseyan's money."
"Governor Murphy signed the most significant legislation in more than 15 years to reduce air pollutants and global warming pollution from our cars and trucks since the passage of the Clean Cars bill in 2004. This bill will make New Jersey a leading state in electrifying our transportation sector and move towards a future of zero tailpipe emissions from our vehicles,” said Doug O’Malley, Director of Environment New Jersey. “This bill is a huge step to put us on the road to meet our Clean Cars mandates and puts NJ Transit on par with more than 60 transit agencies across America that have committed to electrifying their bus fleets."
“We applaud Governor Murphy and our Senate and Assembly leadership for taking nation leading steps today to clean our air and reduce emissions,” said Pamela Frank, CEO of ChargeEVC. “The fact that there is remarkable alignment with this law and initiatives that have already begun under Governor Murphy’s administration is not an accident. All stakeholders have worked together to get us to this point. With swift implantation of this law, we look forward to setting an example for the rest of the country.”