ventura ev 050824SPRINGFIELD State Senator Rachel Ventura presented an initiative to assist local governments with the transition to zero emission vehicles by creating a grant program to the Senate Appropriations committee on Wednesday.

“As we continue to work on the goals set forth for the Climate and Equitable Jobs Act, we need to provide financial avenues to assist local governments with the transition toward zero emission vehicles,” said Ventura (D-Joliet). “If enacted, this legislation will help local governments not only be environmentally friendly, but also cost-effective and save taxpayers money in the long run.”

Under a law Ventura led last year, Senate Bill 1769, state owned passenger vehicles, except for law enforcement vehicles, must be either a manufactured zero-emission vehicle or a converted zero-emission vehicle by Jan. 1, 2030.

After conversations to root out hurdles with local governments on how to expand zero emission transitions, Ventura realigned the need to help local government overcome the financial hurdles of accelerating the transition.

Senate Bill 3483 would require the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency to establish and administer a Local Government Zero Emissions Transition Grant Program to help local government entities transition their owned or leased vehicles to zero emission.

Phase 1 of the legislation would provide an EV readiness study whereas Phase 2 would provide dollars to help fund the implementation and any financial burdens that the local governmental unit may face.

“Current grants and programs that are in place do not help alleviate the financial burdens that come with the transition change. My aim with this bill is to alleviate that so the state can lessen its carbon footprint,” said Ventura. “All levels of government need to do their part to address the climate crisis, and by working together we can make this a reality efficiently.”

Over the coming weeks, Ventura will continue to fight for funding to assist in the transition to electric vehicles.