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OPG asks Smiths Falls to consider leasing electric vehicle charging stations

by | Sep 11, 2019 | Local News | 0 comments

Smiths Falls staff and council minutes ahead of the Regular Committee of the Whole meeting on Monday August 9. From Left: CAO Malcolm Morris, Councillors Wendy Alford, Peter McKenna and Lorraine Allen, Deputy Clerk, Nadine Bennett.

Ontario Power Generation has contacted a number of municipalities, looking for interest in leasing electric vehicle charging stations.

“I believe we should get in while there is funding,” Smiths Falls CAO Malcolm Morris told committee.

Right now the town has a few privately owned charging stations, one at the Scotia Bank and a few at car dealerships, but none downtown.

“They’re looking for a letter of intent – non binding – until we see the lease agreement,” said Morris.

The OPG according to Morris, already has interest for 45 units and is hoping to have 60 units in the  package they submit for funding.

“We would be paying more for the lease, but not the upfront cost and we would keep the revenue,” said Morris.

Having said that, Morris pointed out that the town would likely not recover the full cost of the lease through revenues in the first few years.

“I’d like to see pricing at the higher end of the range, so we can come close to breaking even,” said Councillor Chris McGuire.

The push comes as more electric vehicles take to the road, many of which have limited range, causing what is being termed ‘driver range anxiety’

“So the idea is to reduce that anxiety and have charging stations available,” said Morris.

Council expressed their receptiveness to submitting a letter of intent and staff will come back to council with ideas on locations for charging stations in town.

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