CHEYENNE, Wyo. — Wyoming will soon receive National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) formula funds to use to facilitate electric vehicle infrastructure development, especially charging stations, around the state.
The funding is part of the Federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, also known as the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) signed by President Joe Biden in November 2021. The Wyoming Department of Transportation (WYDOT) is allocated $3.9 million this year and expects $5 million each year for the next four years for a total of $23.96 million for EV infrastructure over five years.
In preparation to execute NEVI funding and other program incentives, the state has developed a Zero Emission Vehicle Strategy and will circulate the strategy over the next month to allow the public and interested parties to provide comments and feedback.
“These stations will not only be powered by Wyoming energy, but will help facilitate tourism around the state,” Director Luke Reiner said. “We want drivers who choose EVs to have safe and reliable ways to charge their vehicles as they drive in our state. This has been an inter-agency effort to maximize available resources for our residents and visitors.”
Wyoming’s interstates have been designated as “Alternative Fuel Corridors” and under the NEVI program must have infrastructure installed first. Corridor infrastructure must adhere to guidelines set by the NEVI Program Joint Office for charger efficiency, location, and accessibility.
Once the interstate corridors are complete, remaining funding can be spent along other key routes to popular destinations like Yellowstone National Park and Devil’s Tower National Monument.
No state funds will be used to build, maintain or operate EV charging infrastructure through the NEVI program. Instead, the company who bids on the corridor will pay the required match amount to the Federal funds.
In addition to the NEVI funding, the BIL outlined $2.5 billion in discretionary grants available to eligible applicants, including state and local governments, special purpose districts, tribes and other groups or entities. The state also has VW settlement funds that will be used to provide additional funding for EV infrastructure development in areas not along the alternative fuel corridors.
WYDOT and other state officials have scheduled public meetings around the state in early April to gather public input as well as feedback from potential bidders and other interested parties. Each meeting is expected to have a virtual component so viewers can attend any meeting and see the proposed plan and make comments.
The schedule is as follows:
- Cheyenne, April 4, 1-3 p.m., WYDOT Auditorium, 5300 Bishop Blvd.
- Casper, April 5, 9-11 a.m., WY Oil and Gas Commission Hearing Room, 2211 King Blvd.
- Cody, April 5, 5-7 p.m., Park County Public Library Grizzly Hall, 1500 Heart Mountain St.
- Riverton, April 6, 1-3 p.m., Riverton City Council Chambers, 816 N. Federal Blvd.
- Jackson, April 7, 9-11 a.m., Ordway Auditorium, Teton County Library, 125 Virginian Lane
- Rock Springs, April 7, 5-7 p.m., WYDOT District Office, 3200 Elk St.
- Rawlins, April 8, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m., Rawlins Family Recreation Center, 1616 Harshman St.
- Gillette, April 11, 2-4 p.m., Campbell County Library, 2101 S 4-J Rd.
- Sheridan, April 12, 10 a.m.–noon, Sheridan County Fulmer Library, 335 W Alger St.
Those interested in making a public comment can also email [email protected]. For more information, visit our website: https://www.dot.state.wy.us/home/planning_projects/zero-emission-vehicles/national-electric-vehicle-infrastructure-(nevi)-program.html
Joseph Price has been a journalist for almost two decades. He began in community media in 2005 and has since worked at media outlets in Virginia and Arkansas. He is also a commercial drone pilot and video editor. He hosts a weekly community radio show focused on goth, metal and industrial music that airs Wednesday evenings at 6 p.m. at www.kuhsradio.org.