New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced a substantial increase in the state's EV “make-ready” program budget from $701 million to $1.24 billion. The Public Service Commission (PSC) approved the budget expansion, highlighting a commitment to advancing EV charging accessibility, particularly in disadvantaged communities.
The enhanced budget includes an ambitious expansion of the fast-charging program, aiming to increase the target from 1,500 to 6,302 DC charging stations. The state is also set to offer higher incentive levels, further propelling the build-out of EV charging infrastructure across New York.
Addressing the need for inclusivity, the state plans to support charging infrastructure for e-bikes, electric scooters, and other forms of electric micro-mobility in disadvantaged communities. Notably, funding for lower-income communities has seen a substantial increase, reaching $372 million from the previous budget of $206 million—an 81% surge across various programs. This strategic allocation aims to ensure that all New Yorkers benefit from the investments in clean transportation, as emphasized by the Governor's office.
In a move to advance the medium- and heavy-duty sector, the budget for the make-ready pilot for commercial customers more than doubled to $58 million. The PSC introduced simplified rules for applicants, targeting emission reductions specifically in disadvantaged communities. These modifications are expected to unlock investments in this crucial sector while generating valuable experience for fleet owners and utilities.
Commercial EV charging also received a boost, with the Commission approving beneficial charging rates for business customers. Under the new programs, commercial EV charging will be eligible for rebates or subsidies of up to 50% of the demand charge costs, encouraging broader adoption among businesses. Additionally, commercial EV-charging customers in downstate New York will be eligible to participate in new managed charging programs focused on grid balancing.
The state anticipates that the announced programs will stimulate a total investment of $4 billion in electric vehicle charging infrastructure, inspiring private-sector participation. This initiative aligns with the EV Make-Ready scheme launched in 2020, envisioning a public-private partnership with utilities and charging equipment manufacturers to install 50,000 AC and 1,500 DC charging stations in New York by 2025 through cost-sharing.
In recent months, New York has demonstrated its commitment to EV infrastructure, earmarking funds for charging stations and investing in Level 2 charging infrastructure. With nearly $40 million in federal funds to increase fast-chargers in the state, New York is poised to make significant strides in promoting sustainable transportation. Approximately half of the federal funding will focus on closing gaps along major highways, contributing to the overall growth of New York's EV charging network.