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Avatar for Charles Benoit

Charles Benoit

Charles Benoit covered legal, regulatory, and policy areas for Electrek. A DC based attorney, Charles’ EV passion began when he joined General Electric at the same time the company launched its Yves Behar designed GE WattStation.

You can reach Charles at cbenoit@gmail.com

This dealer went from selling used gas cars to used EVs, and even new Teslas

Dealer showroom

J.N. Auto, a longtime independent car dealer in rural Quebec, made the transition from selling and servicing used gas vehicles to used electric over five years ago, and even more recently to being one of the largest independent retailers of brand-new Tesla Model 3s anywhere on the planet. Here’s the story of how an independent used car dealer took on new EV sales absent a franchise agreement.



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Electrify America promo code for Hyundai EVs makes billing less bad for a bit

Hyundai Kona and Hyundai Ioniq EV drivers can get some relief from the pain of Electrify America’s opaque billing practices, at least until the end of the year. But you have to sign up with a promo code through the app. And only in the US, not Canada. And your rate will almost double at the end of the year, from $0.35 to $0.69 per minute.



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NYC will get curbside EV charging, but ConEd’s pricing will make people sad

Electric vehicle charging in New York City is going to be expensive, and New Yorkers will pay for it even if they don’t use it. Consolidated Edison (ConEd) wants to build 60 curbside electric vehicle charging stations with its ratepayers’ money, and sell that electricity to ratepayers two times over in the same transaction for prices that would equate to between $3.50 and $10 per gallon of gas.



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Largest public fast charging station in USA opens with help from Tesla

Less than a year ago, the Pasadena City Council voted to join Tesla in building the largest public fast charging station in the USA. That station is now live, offering twenty 50kW stalls each with both Chademo and CCS/SAE ports, accompanied by another 24 parking stalls each with their own 72kW Tesla urban Supercharger stalls.



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EV group says zoning law, not building code, is best for EV infrastructure

Is using the building code to promote EV readiness the best approach? An EV group says no. We spoke with them, and also the City of Vancouver, which switched from the building code to zoning law and now has a flexible approach promising a minimum of 12 kWh over 8 hours in every residential parking stall. Welcome to the quantum physics of EV charging policy.



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NYC pays big bounties for reporting idling engines; D.C. makes it easy with 311 app

idling

Laws against idling vehicle engines have been around for decades. However, enforcement has generally been lax or nonexistent. But now New York City and the District of Columbia are changing that by enlisting residents in the battle against vehicle emissions. NYC even has a generous bounty program where you can make thousands of dollars in your spare time.



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UPDATE: California’s ban on per-minute billing; display at Tesla Superchargers

Two weeks ago, we reported on California’s new regulation that would ban electric vehicle charging companies from selling electricity by time, and also put in new physical display requirements for EV charging stations.

We’ve had subsequent conversations with California’s Division of Measurement Standards (DMS), and it’s clear the agency is counting on EV drivers to help them give force to their new regulation.



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California bans per-minute billing; Tesla Superchargers will need displays

California budget

On December 16, 2019, California’s Office of Administrative Law approved amendments to its Electric Vehicle Fueling Systems Specifications. These rules ban operators of electric vehicle charging stations from billing by the minute at new 240Vac stations in 2021 onwards, and new DCFC stations 2023 onwards.

This is a huge blow to Electrify America and EVgo. Both firms bill by the minute for EV charging, leaving drivers with sticker shock and feeling ripped off by the end of the session. Chargepoint will also be negatively affected, as many of their site-host partners choose to bill per minute. And while Tesla already bills by the kilowatt-hour, California will also be requiring charging stations to physically display “on their face” important information about electricity cost and delivery, a move that will put the most burden on Tesla’s Supercharger stations.



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