The Utah Legislature has introduced a bill that would allow businesses or cities that provide public EV charging stations to recoup their costs without running afoul of the state’s utility regulator.
Representative Patrice Arent (D-Millcreek), told the Public Utilities and Technology Interim Committee that her measure would provide assurances that collecting a fee for EV charging would not result in a station operator being considered as an electric utility.
She said the issue has been studied by the Economic Development Task Force as a cost-effective way to make a dent in the air quality problem that plagues the Wasatch Front.
Vicki Bennett, Salt Lake City’s director of sustainability, said the city has had six free Level 1 EV charging stations for a number of years, which have seen little use. However, with EVs appearing at local auto dealers and costs coming down, “the demand for these electric vehicle stations is increasing.” As usage goes up, costs to the city are expected to increase as well. “We also feel it is not our role to provide people free fuel.”