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Published in Energy

Coalition plan would direct $600M in federal funds to clean transportation in Michigan

BY Monday, November 01, 2021 12:07pm

A coalition of energy businesses and clean energy advocates is calling for a $600 million investment of federal pandemic relief funding into clean transportation initiatives.

The coalition, which announced the proposal today, includes 28 organizations promoting statewide electric vehicle infrastructure, manufacturing site readiness and transitioning public and school bus fleets to electrified and alternative-fuel models.

“We believe Michigan has the know-how to meet the movement and build back better after the pandemic by doubling down on our automotive prowess, protecting public health and investing in the next generation of the mobility workforce,” Chelsea Uphaus, director of marketing for Roush CleanTech LLC, said in a statement. The company is a division of Livonia-based global engineering company Roush Enterprises Inc. 

“What we are proposing would make one-time transformational investments in public fleets, the infrastructure needed to compete in the 21st century, and public health so that Michigan can retain our status as the global leader in transportation innovation,” Uphaus added.

The $600 million plan includes $100 million for “strategic site development” for electric vehicle facilities and another $100 million for retaining and recruiting advanced mobility jobs. The plan also includes $200 million for clean-fuel school and transit buses, and municipal and state fleet vehicles. 

Building on existing programs and recommendations from the state’s Council on Future Mobility and Electrification, the plan also includes $50 million for alternative fuel and electric vehicle charging stations and $40 million to upgrade low-income and multifamily housing with electric vehicle chargers.

The proposed investments would need approval from the state Legislature and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. Coalition members include transmission operator ITC Holdings Corp., the Michigan Energy Innovation Business Council, the Michigan Environmental Council, and Grand Haven-based startup Tradion LLC, which is developing subscription-based home battery and electric vehicle charging systems.

“Financial and environmental sustainability is only achievable when we make it accessible, which requires investment in people, technology, and infrastructure,” Tradion founder and CEO Joshua Bylsma said in a statement. “We are positioned, as a state, to be the leader in clean mobility, but we must make the investment today for that future.”

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