TRENTON, NJ - State Sen. Kip Bateman’s legislation to help the state meet its goal of 330,000 zero-emission vehicles by 2025 has been approved by the Senate.

The bill, S-3223, would help expand the New Jersey’s electric vehicle charging infrastructure.

“If we’re going to get more electric cars on the road, we’re going to need easier and more convenient access to charging stations. It’s as simple as that,” said Bateman (R-16). “The popularity of electric cars is growing, and sales are increasing significantly as they have become more reliable and more affordable. This measure will help the critical charging infrastructure keep pace.”

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There is a growing network of charging stations in Somerset County and throughout New Jersey. Locations are available online at ridewise.org.

The utilization of electric vehicles reduces the carbon emissions, and cars and trucks are the largest contributors of the State’s nitrogen oxide emissions, responsible for 71 percent. In addition, the transportation sector accounts for almost half of New Jersey’s greenhouse gas emissions.

“Electrical vehicles provide a dual benefit to the environment, reducing our dependency on non-renewable energy sources and clearing the air of damaging pollutants,” Bateman said. “When drivers plug in at charging stations, we all share the rewards.”

Under the bill, electric vehicle charging infrastructure is classified an inherently beneficial use under the Municipal Land Use Law, and would be a permitted accessory in all zoning districts of a municipality and would not require a use variance under the law.

“Inherently beneficial” uses provide value to communities because they fundamentally serve the public good. Examples include hospitals, schools, childcare centers, and wind and solar energy facilities.