Would you pay $2 per hour to Level 2 charge your EV?
Matthew Cummings, a Chevrolet Volt owner in Florida, was faced with paying this high fee when he pulled up to a charging station at Centennial Park in Venice, Florida. Cummings choose not to charge there, as he was appalled by the fee.
Instead, Cummings found a nearby charger that was free.
However, free public charging is quickly disappearing in most states throughout the US. In place of free we're now seeing fees attached. Most seem to be per-hour fees, rather than the preferred per-kWh fee.
Where Should I Charge My Volt? At Home? It's Definitely Cheaper
But at $2 per hour, most EV owners feel this is like "highway robbery."
Cummings is actually glad that the city of Venice installed the chargers and feels that their location is ideal:
"The location is awesome. I applaud the city for putting these in... But this should be affordable and accessible."
"I'm not saying I want a hand-out. I'm willing to pay."
Cummings claims that a full charge for his Volt at home takes 10 hours and costs him only $1 in electricity. The charger in Centennial Park would take him only 4 hours to fully charge. The fee for that would be $8, which Cummings says is higher than the gas cost for the for the same 45-ish miles of driving.
With complaints pouring in, Venice Public Works director John Veneziano seems to be open to re-evaluating the fee.
"I don't see a whole lot of vehicles there."
The chargers in question were purchased with a state grant back in 2012, so it's not like the city needs to recoup the costs of the units. Basically, the city just needs to make sure that the electricity is paid for by the EV owners.
As Herald Tribune reports:
When Cummings recently complained to the City Council about the $2 rate, he found a receptive audience.
The council wants the city to get more details about the stations' usage from ChargePoint, which processes the credit card transactions.
"Obviously, we can reset this," council member Jeanette Gates said, referring to the $2 rate.
The city expected that the chargers would be highly utilized, provided that drivers consider them reasonably priced, but they're obviously overpriced now and, as such, aren't seeing much use.
As Cummings suggests, the per hour fee should be reduced, but the city could still generate revenue by selling advertising space on the charging units.
Source: Herald Tribune