No More Free Rides, As City Moves to Charge for Electricity at Electric Vehicle Charging Stations

Published : Monday, July 9, 2018 | 5:24 AM

Electric vehicle owners will start paying the City of Pasadena anywhere between 15 cents and $6 per hour for charging fees and up to $6 per hour as “overstaying” fees – when the car stays in the charging station beyond the time required to finish charging – as soon as the City Council approves a recommended General Fee Schedule for the use of public electric vehicle charging stations in the City.

The new fee schedule will be discussed Monday afternoon at the City Council’s Finance Committee, and is expected to be taken up – and likely approved – by the full Council Monday evening.

Of 34 electric vehicle charging stations in Pasadena, according to SolvingEV.com, the City operates nine.

The City’s Department of Finance said the charging station at Del Mar would start collecting the new fees first, by October 1, since it is the only station properly equipped to enable fee collection. All the other eight existing public EV charging stations will remain in service at no cost until they are replaced or retrofitted with new equipment to enable fee collection.

As proposed, the fee schedule will include an EV Charging Fee of five cents to 35 cents per kilowatt hour, or 15 cents to $6 per hour, which could vary depending on the location of the station. An EV Charger Connection Fee of up to $2 per connection – or charging session – will be charged which covers transaction costs associated with collecting the revenues, such as account management and operating fees imposed by third party operators, and an EV Charger Connection Overstaying Fee of up to $6 an hour if the vehicle remains in the charging area after it has finished charging.

The proposal said a grace period of up to 60 minutes may be authorized at the public charging stations. The Finance Department said the fee will encourage faster turnover at the chargers and maximize the public’s benefit while maintaining cost recovery.

Finance Director Matthew Hawkesworth, in an Agenda Report for the City Council, said the General Fee Schedule includes all charges that have been established based on the cost to provide the EV charging service – including processing land use approvals and building permits, and facility rentals. The schedule was last updated and adopted through a City Council resolution on June 18, Hawkesworth added.

In addition to the nine existing City-operated EV charging stations, Pasadena Water and Power plans to add more public charging stations and will need to charge the fees to be able to recover costs for installing, operating, and maintaining these stations, the agenda report said.

The proposed fees are expected to generate about $50,000 to $150,000 in annual revenue as more stations are installed and the necessary equipment and systems put in place to collect the revenues.

For fiscal year 2019, the City anticipates to collect about $25,000 in revenue that will go to the City’s Light and Power Fund, according to the Department of Finance.

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