House Passes Massie-Lofgren-Eshoo Amendment to Bring Electric Car Charging Stations to Federal Facilities at No Cost to Taxpayer
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The House of Representatives passed an amendment sponsored by Congressman Thomas Massie, Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), and Congresswoman Anna Eshoo (D-CA) that would allow the General Services Administration (GSA) to construct, install, and operate electric vehicle (EV) charging stations for private vehicle use at federal facilities at no cost to the taxpayer. The amendment, which Congressman Massie modeled after a bill written by Congresswoman Lofgren, is part of the Surface Transportation Reauthorization & Reform Act of 2015, which authorizes funds for the Highway Trust Fund for six years.
"In 2012, Congress passed legislation to allow electric vehicle recharging at the U.S. Capitol for congressmen and their staff for a fee, but neglected to extend this authority to other federal agencies and employees. Our amendment would correct this disparity," said Rep. Massie, who serves on both the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and the Science, Space, and Technology Committee.
"I first learned of this issue after a constituent wrote me a letter last year," said Rep. Lofgren, who introduced the EV-COMUTE Act that served as template for this amendment. "In it, he said he was ‘surprised and dismayed’ that it is illegal for federal facilities to provide electric vehicle charging stations for the public or their employees, even at no cost to taxpayers. My family has an electric car and I know they are an important part of improving efficiency and reducing our dependence on fossil fuels. As this amendment was adopted on the House floor today, it served as a powerful reminder of the role citizens play in generating new ideas and legislation.”
“The EV-COMUTE Act replicates a successful clean energy initiative in place at the U.S. Capitol and expands it to federal agencies nationwide, allowing commuters to plug in their electric vehicles at work for a small fee,” said Rep. Eshoo, who also introduced the original EV-COMUTE legislation. “As the nation’s largest employer, the federal government should lead by example in offering workplace charging. Silicon Valley is home to thousands of electric vehicle owners, yet the more than 5,000 federal employees in my congressional district have no access to charging facilities at work because of a quirk in existing law. This legislation is a small but commonsense step in our global battle against climate change and will help keep the U.S. a leader in clean energy deployment.”
"In my personal and public life, I consistently support an all-of-the-above energy strategy for the United States,” concluded Rep. Massie, an MIT graduate who drives an electric car daily in Washington, D.C. “I'm proud to sponsor this amendment because it will expand transportation options for many Americans at no cost to taxpayers."
The Massie-Lofgren-Eshoo amendment is modeled after the EV-COMUTE Act (H.R. 3509), which was introduced by Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren, Congressman Thomas Massie, Congresswoman Anna Eshoo, and Congressman Rob Woodall (R-GA). This bill was written to provide federal workers with flexibility in their commute by enabling federal agencies to construct power charging stations for employees with electric vehicles. The cost of installing and operating the charging stations will be fully covered by fees paid by employees who use the stations.
The Massie-Lofgren-Eshoo amendment was adopted on November 3rd, 2015.