House Passes Portman, Peters Bipartisan Bill to Save Taxpayer Dollars on Federal Vehicles
WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Gary Peters (D-MI), Ranking Member of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, applauded House passage of their bipartisan bill to help save taxpayer dollars by updating policies to help federal agencies adopt electric vehicles, which are more energy efficient than traditional gas-powered vehicles. The Charging Helps Agencies Realize General Efficiencies Act (CHARGE Act) will direct the General Services Administration (GSA) to allow vehicle charge cards to be used to pay for electric vehicle recharging at commercially available charging stations. The Senate passed this legislation on December 18, 2019. The legislation now heads to the president’s desk to be signed into law.
“If federal employees are required to pay for gas with travel charge cards, they should also be allowed to ‘fill up’ at a charging station when operating an electric vehicle,” said Senator Portman. “I'm pleased that the House passed this bipartisan, common-sense bill so that federal agencies can adopt more energy-efficient electric vehicles and I look forward to the president signing it into law soon.”
“I applaud the House for passing my commonsense, bipartisan legislation that will save taxpayer dollars in the long run by ensuring the federal government is ready to adopt more electric vehicles into its fleet,” said Senator Peters. “Electric vehicles have the potential to be more energy efficient and more cost-effective than gasoline-powered vehicles. The President should sign this bill as soon as possible to ensure the federal government can take full advantage of electric vehicles that will save money for Michiganders and Americans across the country.”
“2.3 million acres of my home state have burned from hundreds of fires this year, we’ve already reached 1°C of global warming, and we’re expecting another monster hurricane to hit our southern coast any day now. I’m thrilled to see the CHARGE Act pass the House and move one step closer toward becoming law,” said Congressman Khanna. “My thanks to Senator Peters for introducing it and pushing it through the Senate. We can’t waste any more time in taking every possible action toward building a more sustainable, greener, cleaner future for our energy consumption.”
“Innovation is the key to propelling our nation forward, and I am proud to have worked alongside Senator Portman to bring the CHARGE Act to the President’s desk and help bring our government’s operations further into the 21st century,” said Congressman Gonzalez. “The CHARGE Act updates federal government policy with smart changes that encourage government innovation and modernize the way our government operates. It is a much needed step forward towards making our bureaucracy work better for the American people.”
The GSA is responsible for Fleet Services Cards that federal agencies use to cover the costs of small-dollar repairs and refueling of government-owned and leased vehicles. Currently, electric vehicles are not covered in this service. This bill will enable agencies that acquire electric vehicles to use the existing charge cards to pay for recharging, facilitating the federal government’s adoption of more efficient and affordable electric vehicle technology.