(TRENTON) – Aiming to encourage the use of electric vehicles (EVs) that are more environmentally-friendly than traditional vehicles that run on gas or diesel, the Assembly Transportation and Independent Authorities Committee on Thursday advanced legislation to set regulations for and spur the installation of EV charging stations in New Jersey.
Under the measure (A-2108/5032), electric charging stations would be classified as a permitted accessory use and structure in all municipal zoning or use districts and would not require use variances to install. The New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA) would be required to develop a model land use ordinance for the siting of electric vehicle charging stations and to post the ordinance on its website.
The model land use ordinance would include a requirement that a certain number of electric vehicle charging stations be provided as a condition of receiving site plan approval. The number of EV charging stations required, and the type of charge required, would depend on the type and size of the structure.
The legislation also sets standards for charging station installation in parking garages and residential developments. Gas stations and existing retail establishments would be exempt from certain requirements when proposing to install EV charging stations.
Sponsors of the measure, Assembly Democrats Lisa Swain (D-Bergen, Passaic), Daniel Benson (D-Mercer, Middlesex), Yvonne Lopez (D-Middlesex), Anthony Verrelli (D-Mercer, Hunterdon), Robert Karabinchak (D-Middlesex) and Andrew Zwicker (D-Somerset, Mercer, Middlesex, Hunterdon) released the following joint statement:
“In the not-so-distant future, we’ll see the day when most cars on the road are electric. By 2040, over half of all passenger vehicles sold are projected to be electric. For the sake of our climate future, that day cannot come soon enough.
“If we want to encourage consumers to shift from buying gasoline-powered cars that emit dangerous fossil fuels into the air and erode our climate, to environmentally conscious electric vehicles that will reduce our dependence on oil and support clean air initiatives, we must invest in EV charging infrastructure in every community. The standards outlined in this bill will remove roadblocks faced when installing EV charging stations, which will expand our EV infrastructure and help New Jersey meet its climate goals.”