AUSTIN, Texas—Texas legislators are working to build a statewide network of charging stations under the Texas Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Plan, the Houston Chronicle reports. Using $408 million in federal funding, Senate Bill 1002 would promote electric vehicle ownership through a larger network of chargers.
“This bill, as filed, puts guardrails on electric utilities broadly in order to ensure competition is protected in this new market; it seeks to ensure consumer transparency by prohibiting utilities from utilizing ratepayer funds to build, own or operate charging stations,” said State Sen. Charles Schwertner, who authored the measure.
With 270,000 square miles, Texas has only 320 fast-charging stations, which makes it difficult for EV drivers to travel across the entire state. The Schwertner bill would begin to address the range anxiety some EV owners could experience.
The senate passed the proposal, which would also mandate the Public Utility Commission and the Electric Reliability Council of Texas to provide fast and affordable connections for these chargers. In addition, the bill places the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation over charging station inspections. Other EV-friendly bills recently approved by the Texas state senate include one that places a $200 annual fee on EVs and requires charging stations to have adaptors for any EV to plug in with.