FLO and ChargerHelp! support consumer protection legislation to collect EV charging station reliability data
The EV Charging Reliability Transparency Act seeks to help ensure investments in charging infrastructure benefit all Californians.
SACRAMENTO, CA – February 14, 2022 – Electric vehicle (EV) charging network FLO and charging station maintenance and analytics company ChargerHelp! have partnered with Assembly Majority Leader Eloise Reyes (D –– San Bernardino) and Assembly Budget Committee Chair Phil Ting (D –– San Francisco) to introduce a new bill to require disclosure of reliability data for all publicly funded EV charging stations in California.
A survey by EV driver consumer group Plug In America found that 54 percent of respondents had issues accessing public infrastructure, with broken chargers cited as the most common issue. While policymakers and media alike have raised the issue of charging station reliability, the performance data which they and the public need to assess returns on public investment in EV charging stations has so far been lacking, which poses a problem for the many drivers who would consider a switch to EVs were it not for scarce information about the availability and reliability of charging infrastructure.
“No driver should have to put up with broken chargers, and no community should be left behind in accessing reliable stations,” said Louis Tremblay, President and CEO of FLO. “This legislation will help California make sure its investments in infrastructure are providing the public benefit promised to drivers.”
FLO and ChargerHelp! have long believed that consumer perceptions about the charging experience drive EV adoption. FLO and ChargerHelp! expect that reliability standards will improve the charging experience and, thus, encourage drivers to adopt EVs, which would be a positive development for both the charging industry and the state’s climate goals.
The bill, dubbed by the sponsoring EV charging companies the “EV Charging Reliability Transparency Act” (Act) aims to help policymakers and the public understand the performance of California’s investments in EV infrastructure, and whether there are inequities in driver access to reliable stations.
“For a decade, we have watched California, and then the nation, focus its attention on getting charging stations in the ground to build the EV market,” says Kameale C. Terry, ChargerHelp! Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer. “But that is only one half of the equation – we need to ensure chargers are in good working order for all drivers to use, at all times.”
The Act builds on an existing foundation of policy in the state. In 2021, the state released the Zero-Emission Vehicle Market Development Strategy, which calls for the measurement of charging station performance. In last year’s state budget, led by Assemblymember Ting, the Legislature required tracking of “downtime” as part of a US$785 million allocation to deploy zero-emission vehicle infrastructure.
“Dependable charging stations encourage greater adoption of EVs. Through last year’s budget, we became the first state to require reliability data for our charging stations,” said Assemblymember Ting. “My AB 2061 is a critical next step because disclosure of reliability data helps ensure the equipment drivers plug into is functional and, therefore, accessible to all Californians.”
In 2018, the state also passed legislation to require equitable deployment of charging infrastructure, but it stopped short of ensuring equitable access to reliable stations, which could leave EV drivers in areas where stations are not maintained at a disadvantage.
“We have a duty to ensure the public is receiving the benefit of accessing reliable public chargers that are funded by public funds,” said Assemblymember Reyes. “Ensuring high reliability of stations will help drive EV adoption and help the state meet its climate goals”.
In addition to requiring accountability through data disclosure, the Act requires the Energy Commission to consistently analyze this data and consider tools to improve infrastructure reliability if it decides it is undermining EV adoption.
FLO is a leading North American electric vehicle charging network operator and a major provider of smart charging software and equipment. Every month, FLO enables over half a million charging events thanks to over 50,000 high-quality stations deployed on public networks, commercial and residential installations. FLO’s headquarters and network operations center are based in Quebec City, and its assembly plant is located in Shawinigan (Quebec). The company also has offices in Montreal, Vancouver and California, and regional teams located in Ontario, New York, and Texas. For more information, visit flo.com.
ChargerHelp! is an app-based company that enables on-demand repair of electric vehicle charging stations, while building out local workforces, removing barriers and enabling economic mobility within all communities. ChargerHelp! operates at the intersection of clean technology and workforce development. ChargerHelp!’s system solves the industry-wide problem of downed electric vehicle charging stations by providing on-demand repairs and maintenance support from trained and supported local workforces. ChargerHelp! is headquartered in Los Angeles, California with service in 11 states and immediate plans for expansion into another 8 states.
Office of Assembly Budget Chair Ting
Office of Assembly Majority Leader Reyes
Senior Advisor, Media Relations and Outreach