Commerce Dept. Grants Money for Electric Ferry Development
The Washington State Department of Commerce announced this week $8.9 million in grants from the DOC will be allotted for 14 new EV (electric vehicle) charging stations and projects in WA state. And yes, one of them is an Inslee pet project, development of an electric ferry.
The projects are slated for Bellingham, Tacoma, Port of Seattle, Port of Longview, Seattle City Light, Spokane (for 51 charging stations in the county) and some of the money will be spent to being development on an electric ferry.
Yes, Gov. Inslee announced as part of his climate change budgeting, he wants to develop an all electric ferry, capable of carrying 28 cars and 150 people. It would be in Skagit County, operating ferry service to Guemes Island.
According to part of the information released by Commerce:
"Commerce placed priority on communities disproportionately impacted by climate change and pollution from transportation systems, many of which are often low-income and communities of color. Among the recipients are multiple projects supporting low-income households, such as charging infrastructure for an electric vehicle car share serving senior affordable housing residents, two dual-port charging stations at a location with affordable multi-family housing and a commercial building serving the formerly homeless, and a variety of other urban and rural public transit charging projects."
Critics, business leaders and some legislators on the GOP side are critcizing the outlay, saying the Commerce Department would be better served to utilize those funds to help economic programs--especially during the COVID Pandemic.
The reason all but one of the projects is on the West side, is because (outside of Spokane) the vast majority of electric vehicles are west of the Cascades, especially in the Puget Sound Corridor.