Examples of Local Laws and Incentives

There are a variety of local laws and incentives that encourage or require individuals and/or public and private organizations to use alternative fuels, advanced vehicles, and strategies to decrease fuel use or increase fuel economy. Local city and county governments create such laws and incentives to ensure people use vehicles and transportation fuels safely and efficiently.

The featured laws and incentives below are a small sampling of existing laws and incentives that local governments have created. For specific laws and incentives in your area, contact your local government.

Vehicle Purchase and Infrastructure Development Incentives

Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Station Pilot - New Orleans, LA

In partnership with Entergy New Orleans, the City of New Orleans (City) administers a pilot program featuring free publicly accessible EV charging stations. Entergy New Orleans provides 30 charging stations at 25 locations across New Orleans, primarily located at New Orleans Recreation Development Commission Facilities, public libraries, and public parks. For more information, see the City’s EV website.

Electric Vehicle (EV) and Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) Discount Program - Tacoma, WA

The City of Tacoma and Tacoma Public Utilities provide point-of-sale discounts for the purchase of eligible EV and PHEV models at participating dealerships. For more information, see the City of Tacoma EV Discount Program website.

Expedited Permitting and Inspection for Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Stations - Los Angeles, CA

The City of Los Angeles offers instant, online home EV charging station permitting approval and expedited EV charging station inspection and meter installation. For more information, see the PermitLA website.

Fleet Electrification Incentives – Seattle, WA

Seattle City Light offers advisory services to fleets to analyze fleet electrification opportunities. Additionally, Seattle City Light provides per-port rebates for Level 2 and direct current fast charging (DCFC) stations. Customers located in environmental justice communities may receive electric vehicle charging station make-ready rebates. For more information, see the Seattle City Light Fleet Electrification Program website.

Parking Incentives

Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging and Parking Incentives - Sacramento, CA

Individuals and businesses that own or lease qualifying EVs are eligible for a 50% discount in charging fees at certain City of Sacramento (City) parking garages. Daily parking rates still apply. Eligible EVs must have an EV Monthly Parking Permit. For more information, see the City’s EV Parking website.

Electric Vehicle (EV) Parking – Cincinnati, OH

The Cincinnati Electric Car Incentive program offers free EV parking at any parking meter or street parking space within the City of Cincinnati limits. This free parking program is for EVs only and does not include plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. EV owners must apply for this exemption on the Free Parking For All-Electric Vehicles website.

Low-Emission Vehicle Parking Incentive – Salt Lake City, UT

Salt Lake City offers free parking at metered spaces for vehicles that meet U.S. Environmental Protection Agency SmartWay Elite Program standards. For more information, see the Salt Lake City Green Vehicle Parking Permit website.

Vehicle Acquisition Requirements

Electric School Bus Mandate - New York City, NY

School buses operating in New York City must be electric by September 1, 2035. This mandate is subject to the availability and reliability of electric school buses and associated infrastructure. The New York City Department of Education must publish a report every five years to update the Mayor and City Council on the progress toward this goal. For more information, see New York City Administrative Code 24-163.9.

Electric Vehicle (EV) Municipal Fleet Requirements - Nashville, TN

The Nashville Department of General Services provides EVs to qualified employees to use for business purposes as part of a commitment to electrify all non-emergency fleet vehicles. For more information, see the City of Nashville Sustainable Mobility website.

Fleet Emissions and Electrification Requirements – Alexandria, VA

The City of Alexandria (City) adopted an Alternative Fuel Fleet Policy to increase the use of fuel efficient vehicles and reduce municipal greenhouse gas emissions. As part of this policy, the City must decrease its total vehicle emissions by 25% by fiscal year (FY) 2030-2031, based on FY 2019-2020 emissions. The City plans to electrify all fleet vehicles by 2024 and adopted an Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Infrastructure Readiness Strategy (Strategy) to support the adoption of EVs and deployment of EV charging stations in the community. The Strategy includes recommendations for meeting charging demand; improving community awareness, strengthening zoning, codes, and permitting; advocating for opportunities that support EV adoption and EV charging station deployment; and developing business models for EV charging stations. The Strategy is part of the City’s goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. For more information, see the City’s EV website.

Fleet Vehicle Purchasing Requirements – Louisville, KY

Louisville Metro Government agencies and departments must prioritize the purchase of electric and hybrid vehicles, green equipment, and necessary infrastructure to support the vehicle fleet’s transition to electric vehicles. For more information, see Executive Order 2021-005.

Promotion Initiatives

Dealership Education Program - Austin, TX

Dealerships that sell electric vehicles (EVs) may enroll in Austin Energy training sessions to provide general education on EVs, EV benefits, and other programs and incentives available for EVs and dealerships. Participating dealerships may be featured in Austin Energy’s EV Buyer’s Guide. For more information, see the Austin Energy Plug-In Austin EVs website.

Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Stations at Public Facilities - Pittsburgh, PA

Pittsburgh launched the EV Charging Strategic Plan (Plan) in 2021, which set a goal of installing 200 publicly accessible EV charging stations on public property and 2,000 private EV charging stations by 2025. The Plan also aims to guarantee all residents are within a 10-minute walk to a Level 2 EV charging station and a 10-minute drive to a direct current fast charging (DCFC) station.

Electric Vehicle (EV) Rideshare Program – Virginia Beach, VA

The City of Virginia Beach offers a free app-based rideshare service using five city-owned EVs. For more information, see the Virginia Beach Resort Area Mobility Plan and Freebee Rideshare website.

Electric Vehicle (EV) Solar Charging Pilot - San Diego, CA

The City of San Diego (City) launched a pilot program in 2021 to charge the municipal EV fleet using solar canopies placed over each parking stall. Solar EV charging is intended to fulfill mobility, land use, and decarbonization priorities established in the City’s Climate Action Plan. For more information, see the San Diego EV Pilot Program website.

Electric Vehicle (EV) and Infrastructure Initiatives – Phoenix, AZ

The City of Phoenix (City) developed a Transportation Electrification Action Plan that includes the following recommendations:

  • Adopt guiding principles for City action;
  • Support accelerated EV adoption in the community;
  • Expand access to public EV charging;
  • Support access to home, business, and workplace EV charging;
  • Develop and pilot a local model of e-mobility investment in an underserved community; and,
  • Lead by example.

The City also established a goal to develop 500 City-hosted public charging stations by 2030 and will adopt an EV purchasing policy for municipal fleet vehicles. For more information, see the City’s EV website.

Idle Reduction Requirements

Idle Reduction Requirement - Denver, CO

The city and county of Denver prohibit the idling of any vehicle for more than five minutes in any one-hour period. Failure to comply may result in fines. This prohibition does not apply when ambient outside air temperatures have been less than 20 degrees Fahrenheit for the previous 24 hours or when the current ambient outside air temperature is less than 10 degrees Fahrenheit. Emergency vehicles, vehicles engaged in traffic operations, vehicles being serviced, vehicles that must idle to operate auxiliary equipment, and vehicles that are idling due to traffic congestion are also exempt. For more information, see the Denver Revised Municipal Code, Title I, Chapter 4, Section 4-43.

Idle Reduction Requirement - Philadelphia, PA

The City of Philadelphia prohibits the idling of any heavy-duty diesel motor vehicle for more than two minutes. Failure to comply may result in fines. Exceptions apply when the ambient temperature is 32 degrees Fahrenheit or below or when the ambient temperature is equal to or greater than 75 degrees Fahrenheit and the heavy-duty vehicle is a bus equipped with air conditioning and non-openable windows. For more information, see the City of Philadelphia Air Management Regulation IX.

Infrastructure Requirements

Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Station Design Guidance – Columbus, OH

The City of Columbus (City) developed design guidelines for EV charging stations. Guidance covers the installation of EV charging stations and all accessories when used in public roadways, parking lots, parking stalls, and sidewalks. For more information, see the City’s EV Charging website.

Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Station Right of Way Permit Requirements - Cambridge, MA

The City of Cambridge (City) offers permits for Level 1 charging cables to be extended across the public right-of-way. Residents must hold a valid parking permit and use a cord ramp to ensure continued sidewalk accessibility. Residents within one eighth mile of a city-owned streetside EV charging station are ineligible for the permit. Additional requirements apply. For more information, see the City’s EV website.

Electric Vehicle (EV) Ready Building Requirements – Middletown, CT

New developments that require 25 or more parking spaces in Middletown must have a minimum of 3% of the total number of spaces established as EV parking spaces. EV parking spaces must have a Level 2 or direct current fast charging (DCFC) station or connection. Developments that exceed the minimum 3% requirement for EV parking spaces may request a reduction in the total number of required parking spaces. This reduction may be equal to the number of EV parking spaces above the 3% minimum requirement, but the reduction may not exceed 10% of the total amount of parking spaces for the proposed development. For more information, see the Middletown Planning and Zoning website and Planning and Zoning Code Section 40.02.01.

Electric Vehicle (EV) Ready Building Requirements – Portland, OR

The City of Portland requires new multifamily properties with five or more units to install electrical conduit and secure sufficient electrical capacity for EV charging at 50% of parking spaces or 100% of parking spaces for developments with six or fewer parking spaces. Additional requirements may apply. For more information, see the City of Portland EV Ready Code website and City of Portland Ordinance No. 191164.

Electric Vehicle (EV) Ready Building Requirements – San Jose, CA

The City of San Jose (City) requires new multifamily housing, residential parking facility, hotel, and motel developments to install EV charging stations at 10% of parking spaces. These building types must also include panel capacity and conduit for future EV charging stations in 70% of parking spaces, and full circuit installations at 20% of parking spaces. Additional requirements may apply. For more information, see the City’s Code of Ordinances 24.10.200.

Sustainable Development Building Requirements - Lakewood, CO

The City of Lakewood developed a point-based system for sustainable development features required in new developments. Building developers may earn points for electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure and public EV charging infrastructure. For more information, see the City of Lakewood Enhanced Development Menu and Zoning Ordinance Sec. 17.13.2 and 17.8.