(TRENTON) – To ensure that schools are able to purchase energy-efficient electric-powered school buses, Assembly Democrats Pamela Lampitt (D-Burlington, Camden), John McKeon (D-Essex, Morris), and Raj Mukherji (D-Hudson) sponsor legislation that would require the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) to establish a loan program for certain costs of electric-powered school buses purchased by local school districts and school bus contractors.
The bill (S-228/A-1626) would require the NJEDA, in consultation with the New Jersey Department of Education and the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission, to develop and administer a loan program that would provide a loan for the cost differential of purchasing an electric-powered school bus instead of a diesel or gasoline-powered school bus.
Upon committee approval of the measure, Assembly members Lampitt, McKeon, and Mukherji issued the following joint statement:
“Diesel and gas-powered school buses emit pollution and greatly deteriorate air quality in our State. We want to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in our communities and ensure that our residents and children are breathing cleaner air. Changing to electric-powered school buses will allow us to transition to a more environmentally friendly means of transportation.
“Electric school buses can substantially reduce future costs that will allow school districts to ultimately allocate money toward other areas of need. With reduced maintenance and fuel costs, our districts will be able to safely get our children to school, reduce greenhouse emissions, and create a new, cost-effective approach toward purchasing school buses.”