Monday, June 12, 2006

Minnesota Plug-in Law

Representative Frank Hornstein reports that House File 3718 has passed, and that Minnesota is the first state to join the push for plug-in hybrids.

Here is the story from the Brownfield Network

Plug-in hybrid flexible-fueled cars on the way
Thursday, June 8, 2006, 2:01 PM
by Bob Meyer

Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty has signed a law promoting plug-in hybrid flexible-fueled vehicles. The car runs primarily on electricity and renewable fuels like ethanol power the engine.

The new law instructs the state to buy plug-in hybrids on a preferred basis when they become available and also it encourages Minnesota State University at Mankato to develop a flex-fueled hybrid.

A task force has been created from business, government and utility representatives to develop a plan to build the cars in Minnesota. Specifically, they are targeting the Ford plant set for closure in St. Paul.

Coincidentally, the electricity at the Ford plant comes from its own hydroelectric generator on the Mississippi.

Frank Hornstein was chief author of the bill in the Minnesota House, he sees this as a great opportunity, “We have the research at Minnesota State, we have the corn and ethanol industry and we have the Ford plant.”

The bill states:

"All solicitation documents for the purchase of a passenger automobile, pickup truck, or van, issued under the jurisdiction of the Department of Administration after June 30, 2006, must contain the following language:

"It is the intention of the state of Minnesota to begin purchasing plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and neighborhood electric vehicles as soon as they become commercially available, meet the state's performance specifications, and are priced no more than ten percent above the price for comparable gasoline-powered vehicles.

It is the intention of the state to purchase plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and neighborhood electric vehicles whenever practicable after these conditions have been met and as fleet needs dictate for at least five years after these conditions have been met."

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