Connecticut Laws and Incentives

Listed below are the summaries of all current Connecticut laws, incentives, regulations, funding opportunities, and other initiatives related to alternative fuels and vehicles, advanced technologies, or air quality. You can go directly to summaries of:

State Incentives

Heavy-Duty Vehicle Emissions Reduction Grants

The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) allocates a portion of its designated funds from the Volkswagen (VW) Environmental Mitigation Trust for the replacement or repower of eligible heavy-duty on-road vehicles through its Diesel Emissions Mitigation Program (Program). The Program provides funding in the following amounts:

Project TypeFunding Amount for Public EntitiesFunding Amount for Private Entities
All-electric repower, including associated charging infrastructure65% of project costs60% of project costs
Purchase of a new all-electric vehicle, including associated charging infrastructure65% of project costs60% of project costs
Repower of a new diesel or alternative fuel engine45% of project costs40% of project costs
Purchase of a new diesel or alternative fuel vehicle35% of project costs25% of project costs

Vehicles that qualify for replacement or repower include model year (MY) 1992-2009 class 8 port drayage trucks, MY 1992 class 4-8 local freight trucks, and MY 2009 and older class 4-8 school buses, shuttle buses, and transit buses.

For more information, including application periods, see the DEEP VW Grant Information website.

Hydrogen and Plug-In Electric Vehicle (PEV) Rebate

The Connecticut Hydrogen and Electric Automobile Purchase Rebate Program (CHEAPR) offers rebates for the incremental cost of the purchase or lease of a hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEV), all-electric vehicle (EV), or plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV).

CHEAPR offers rebates of up to $9,500 for the purchase or lease a new eligible FCEV, EV, or PHEV. The manufacturer suggested retail price for new eligible vehicles may not exceed $60,000 for FCEV models and $42,000 for EV and PHEV models.

CHEAPR offers an additional rebate, Rebate Plus, for all applicants that participate in a state or federal income qualified program. Connecticut residents that participate in certain income qualified programs are also eligible to receive a rebate for the purchase or lease of a used eligible vehicle.

Rebates are offered in the following amounts:

Vehicle TypeCHEAPR StandardRebate Plus - New VehicleRebate Plus - Used Vehicle

Rebates are available on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information, see the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection CHEAPR website.

(Reference House Bill 7424, 2019)

Loans for Residential Charging or Natural Gas Fueling Infrastructure

The Connecticut Green Bank offers Smart-E low-interest loans for Connecticut PEV drivers to purchase Level 2 and DC fast electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) or natural gas vehicle fueling equipment. To qualify, applicants must own and occupy the residence at which the EVSE or fueling equipment will be installed. For more information, see the Connecticut Green Bank Smart-E Loans website.

Reduced Registration Fee for Electric Vehicles (EVs)

EVs are eligible for a reduced biennial vehicle registration fee of $57. For more information, refer to the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles Vehicle Registration Fees website. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 14-49(f))

Electric Vehicle Emissions Inspection Exemption

Vehicles powered exclusively by electricity are exempt from state motor vehicle emissions inspections. For more information, see the Connecticut Emissions Program website. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 14-164c)

Idle Reduction Weight Exemption

A commercial vehicle equipped with idle reduction technology may exceed the state's gross, total axle, total tandem, or bridge formula vehicle weight limits by up to 550 pounds to compensate for the additional weight of the idle reduction technology. The additional weight may not exceed the actual weight of the idle reduction unit. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 14-267c)

Utility/Private Incentives

Plug-In Electric Vehicle (PEV) and EV Supply Equipment (EVSE) Rebates - Groton Utilities

Groton Utilities offers a limited number of $2,000 rebates for the purchase of a new PEV and $1,000 rebates for the lease of a new PEV. Customers may also be eligible for a $600 rebate for the installation of a qualifying Level 2 EVSE. For more information, including eligibility requirements and how to apply, see the Groton Utilities Electric Vehicle Rebate Program website.

Plug-In Electric Vehicle (PEV) and EV Supply Equipment (EVSE) Rebates - Norwich Public Utilities

Norwich Public Utilities (NPU) offers eligible customers rebates for the purchase or lease of a new or used PEV and the purchase and installation of qualified EVSE. Rebates are offered in the following amounts:

Vehicle TypeRebate Amount
New Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV)$1,000
New All Electric Vehicle (EV)$1,500
Used PHEV, Model Year (MY) 2019 or newer$500
Used EV, MY 2019 or newer$1,000

EVSE TypeRebate Amount
Residential Level 2 $1,000
Commercial, workplace or multifamily Level 2$3,000
Commercial, Public Level 2$4,000

For more information, including eligibility requirements and how to apply, see the NPU Electric Vehicle and Charging Rebate Program website.

Public Plug-In Electric Vehicle Charging Rate Pilot Program - Eversource

Eversource offers a voluntary rate program for public, separately metered, Level 2 or direct current (DC) fast electric vehicle supply equipment. Eligibility for this rate is subject to the review and approval of Eversource. For more information, visit the Electric Vehicle Rebate Program website.

Residential Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE) Charging Rate Incentive – Eversource

Eversource offers residential customers an incentive of up to $300 to enroll in a demand response managed charging program. For more information, see the Eversource ConnectedSolutions website.

Laws and Regulations

Autonomous Vehicle (AV) Task Force and Pilot Program

An AV Task Force was established to study fully AVs. The task force will evaluate the standards established by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration regarding state responsibilities for regulating AVs and laws proposed or enacted by other states to regulate AVs and recommend how the state should regulate AVs. The task force released a final report in February 2021.

The Connecticut Office of Policy and Management, in consultation with the Departments of Motor Vehicles, Transportation, and Emergency Services and Public Protection, will establish a pilot program for up to four municipalities to allow approved candidates to test AVs on local highways. By January 1, 2019, and annually thereafter, the Office of Policy and Management will submit a report to the General Assembly on the implementation and progress of the pilot program.

(Reference Connecticut General Statutes 13a-260 and Public Act 17-69)

Public Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE) Requirements

Owners and operators of public EVSE that require payment must allow multiple payment options that allow access by the public. In addition, payment should not require users to pay a subscription fee or obtain a membership of any kind, however payment required may be based on price schedules for such memberships. Owners and operators can impose restrictions on the amount of time a vehicle can use the EVSE.

In addition, owners and operators of a public EVSE must disclose the location and characteristics of each EVSE to the U.S. Department of Energy's Alternative Fuels Data Center. Information that must be disclosed includes, but is not limited to, address, voltage, and timing restrictions.

(Reference Connecticut General Statutes 16-19ggg)

State Building Electric Vehicle Charging Station Standards

The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environment must develop standards for construction of state buildings, which include standards electric vehicle charging stations standards and meet or exceed Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver levels. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 298-16a-38k)

Plug-In Electric Vehicle (PEV) Parking Requirement

An individual may not park a motor vehicle in a parking space equipped with a public charging station unless that vehicle is a PEV. An infraction applies for non-PEVs that park in spaces with public charging stations. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 16-19ggg)

Electric Vehicle (EV) Registration Data

The Department of Motor Vehicles (Department) must record the number of EVs registered in Connecticut. An EV is defined as any plug-in electric vehicle (PEV), fuel cell electric vehicle, plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, or range-extended PEV. The data should be publicly available on the Department's website and include the number of EVs registered in state each year, and the total number of EVs registered in the state. The Department must update the information every six months. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 14-12(l))

State Fleet Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction

AA Steering Committee on State Sustainability (Committee) will direct executive branch agencies to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from vehicle fleets by expanding the “Lead by Example” program. The Committee will develop actions to achieve GHG reduction goals set by the governor. For more information and updates, see the Lead By Example Initiative website. (Reference Executive Order 2019-1)

Public Utility Definition

An owner of an electric vehicle charging station is not defined as a public utility. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 16-1)

Utility Company Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Load Projection Requirement

The Public Utilities Regulatory Authority requires electric distribution companies to integrate EV charging load projections into distribution planning. Projections will be based on the number of EVs registered in the state as well as on projected fluctuation in EV sales. Electric distribution companies must publish an annual report detailing the EV charging load projections for the company's distribution planning. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 16-19fff)

Utility Company Plug-In Electric Vehicle (PEV) Rates

Utility companies must evaluate if it is appropriate to implement PEV time of day rates for residential and commercial customers. A time-of-day rate is a rate for PEVs that is designed to reflect the cost of electricity to the consumer at different times of the day. Utilities that have already made this determination prior to July 1, 2017, are not required to do so again. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 16-19f)

Integrated Resources Plan Report

The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP), in consultation with the electric distribution companies, must deliver a plan that analyzes, among other things, the potential for electric vehicles (EVs) to provide energy storage and other services to the electric grid, and identify strategies to ensure that the grid is prepared to support increased EV charging based on projections of sales of EVs. The report must be delivered biennially. Reports are available on the DEEP Integrated Resources Planning website. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 16a-3a and 16a-3e)

Alternative Fuel Vehicle (AFV) Procurement Preference

In determining the lowest responsible qualified bidder for the award of state contracts, the Connecticut Department of Administrative Services may give a price preference of up to 10% for the purchase of AFVs or for the purchase of conventional vehicles plus the conversion equipment to convert the vehicles to dual or dedicated alternative fuel use. For these purposes, alternative fuels are natural gas, hydrogen, propane, or electricity used to operate a motor vehicle. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 4a-59)

Ethanol Labeling Requirement

Any motor vehicle fuel sold at retail containing more than 1% ethanol or methanol must be labeled according to Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection specifications to indicate the percentage of ethanol in the fuel. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 16a-15)

Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) Deployment Support

Connecticut joined California, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, and Vermont in signing a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to support the deployment of ZEVs through involvement in a ZEV Program Implementation Task Force (Task Force). In May 2014, the Task Force published a ZEV Action Plan (Plan) identifying 11 priority actions to accomplish the goals of the MOU, including deploying at least 3.3 million ZEVs and adequate fueling infrastructure within the signatory states by 2025. The Plan also includes a research agenda to inform future actions. On an annual basis, each state must report on the number of registered ZEVs, the number of public electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) and hydrogen fueling stations, and available information regarding workplace fueling for ZEVs.

In June 2018, the Task Force published a new ZEV Action Plan for 2018-2021. Building on the 2014 Action Plan, the 2018 Action Plan makes recommendations for states and other key partners in five priority areas:

  • Raising consumer awareness and interest in electric vehicle technology;
  • Building out a reliable and convenient residential, workplace and public charging/fueling infrastructure network;
  • Continuing and improving access to consumer purchase and non-financial incentives;
  • Expanding public and private sector fleet adoption; and
  • Supporting dealership efforts to increase ZEV sales.

For more information, see the Multi-State ZEV Task Force website.

Medium- and Heavy-Duty Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) Deployment Support

California, Colorado, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington (signatory states) signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to support the deployment of medium- and heavy-duty ZEVs through involvement in a Multi-State ZEV Task Force (Task Force).

By January 2021, the Task Force will develop a multi-state action plan to support electrification of medium- and heavy-duty vehicles. The Task Force will consider actions to accomplish the goals of the MOU, including limiting all new medium- and heavy-duty vehicles sales in the signatory states to ZEVs by 2050. The signatory states will also seek to accelerate the deployment of medium- and heavy-duty ZEVs to benefit disadvantaged communities and explore opportunities to coordinate and partner with key stakeholders.

For more information, see the Medium- and Heavy-Duty ZEVs: Action Plan Development Process website.

Plug-In Electric Vehicle (PEV) Deployment Goal

The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) released the Electric Vehicle Roadmap for Connecticut (Roadmap), a framework to accelerate PEV adoption. The Roadmap sets a state goal for 20% of the statewide light-duty fleet, or 500,000 vehicles, to be PEVs by 2030. The Roadmap complements strategies identified in the Zero Emission Vehicle Deployment Support, including fleet electrification, expanding electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) infrastructure, establishing EVSE interoperability criteria, minimizing grid impacts, advancing building codes, streamlining permitting requirements, leveraging incentives, and increasing education and outreach. For more information, see the DEEP Roadmap website.

Zero Emission Bus Implementation Plan

The Connecticut Department of Transportation, in consultation with the Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology, developed the Connecticut Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Deployment Transportation Strategy: 2011-2050 to identify strategies to expand the availability and use of hydrogen fuel and renewable energy sources. The strategy includes a plan to implement zero emission buses on a state-wide basis, addresses the technological, facility, and financial arrangements necessary to fully implement a zero emissions bus fleet, and identifies specific locations for hydrogen fueling stations along state highways and other locations. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 13b-38dd)

Alternative Fuel and Fuel-Efficient Vehicle Acquisition and Emissions Reduction Requirements

Cars and light-duty trucks purchased by state agencies must meet the following requirements:

  • Have an average U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimated fuel economy of at least 40 miles per gallon;
  • Comply with state fleet vehicle acquisition requirements set forth under the Energy Policy Act of 1992 (EPAct); and
  • Obtain the best achievable fuel economy per pound of carbon dioxide emitted for the applicable vehicle classes.
Alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) that the state purchases to comply with these requirements must be capable of operating on an EPAct-defined alternative fuel that is available in the state.

In addition, all cars and light-duty trucks that the state purchases or leases must be hybrid electric vehicles, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, or capable of using alternative fuel. All AFVs purchased or leased must be certified to the California Air Resources Board's (ARB) Ultra Low Emission Vehicle II (ULEV II) standard, and all light-duty gasoline vehicles and hybrid electric vehicles the state purchases or leases must be certified, at a minimum, to the California ARB ULEV II standard. The Connecticut Department of Administrative Services must report annually on the composition of the state fleet, including the volume of alternative fuels used.

Vehicles that the Connecticut Department of Public Safety designates as necessary for the Department of Public Safety to carry out its mission are exempt from these provisions.

(Reference Connecticut General Statutes 4a-67d)

School Bus Emissions Reduction

Each full-sized school bus with a Model Year (MY) 1994 or newer engine must be equipped with specific emissions control systems, including either: a closed crankcase filtration system and a level 1, level 2, or level 3 device; an engine that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has certified as meeting MY 2007 emissions standards; or use of compressed natural gas or other alternative fuel that EPA or the California Air Resources Board has certified to reduce particulate matter emissions by at least 85% as compared to ultra-low sulfur diesel fuel. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 14-164o)

Idle Reduction Requirement

School bus operators may not idle a school bus engine for more than three consecutive minutes except under the following conditions: uncontrollable traffic conditions or mechanical difficulties; operation of heating, cooling, safety or auxiliary equipment; outdoor temperatures below 20 degrees Fahrenheit; maintenance of a safe temperature for students with special needs; school bus repair; or receipt or discharge of passengers on a public highway or road. An infraction applies to violators of these regulations for the first offense and a fine from $100 to $500 applies for each succeeding offense. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 14-277)

Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) Sales Requirements and Low Emission Vehicle (LEV) Standards

The Connecticut LEV Program requires that all new vehicles sold in Connecticut meet California motor vehicle emissions and compliance requirements specified in Title 13 of the California Code of Regulations. These regulations apply to new vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating of up to 14,000 pounds. Manufacturers must meet the greenhouse gas emissions standard and the ZEV production and sales requirements. For more information, see the Connecticut LEV Program website. (Reference Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies 22a-174-36b and Connecticut General Statutes 22a-174-36b and 22a-174g)

Aftermarket Alternative Fuel Vehicle (AFV) Conversion Requirements

All AFV conversions must meet current applicable U.S. Environmental Protection Agency or California Air Resources Board standards for aftermarket conversions. Aftermarket systems must be properly certified for the specific vehicle or engine family that is being converted. An aftermarket AFV conversion is defined as a conventional original equipment manufacturer vehicle altered to operate on propane, natural gas, methane, ethanol, or electricity. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 22a-174g)

Emissions Reduction Credits

Any state mobile emissions reduction credits program must allow credits for emissions reductions achieved by converting a vehicle to operate on an alternative fuel, even if the conversion took place before the credit program began. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 22a-174i)

Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) and Propane Tax

CNG and propane used in motor vehicles is subject to a state motor fuel tax rate of $0.26 per gasoline gallon equivalent (GGE). For taxation purposes, one GGE is equal to 123.57 standard cubic feet of natural gas and 35.97 cubic feet of propane. For more information, see the Connecticut Department of Revenue Services Special Notice website. (Reference Connecticut General Statutes 12-458)