Funding for the Clean Cities program has been preserved as the House of Representatives passed the FY-2020 Energy and Water Appropriations Bill last week. The bill includes $42.3 million for Clean Cities, an increase of $4.5 million over last year.
Last week, U.S. Congressman Paul Gosar (R-AZ) was expected to propose an amendment to the FY-2020 Department of Energy (DOE) budget on the House floor that would have eliminated Clean Cities funding. The clean transportation industry sent a letter to the House of Representatives last week, urging its members to reject the proposed amendment. Transportation Energy Partners and 13 other national trade and non-profit organizations and corporations, as well as more than 260 state and local organizations, signed the letter.
Possibly due to this and other efforts, Congressman Gosar did not offer the amendment to the House floor.
"We're pleased that the outpour of support from Clean Cities coalitions and fleets and business leaders in the Clean Transportation industry were able to convince the author of the amendment to withdraw it, and that was a big victory for Clean Cities and for communities across the country that are looking for cleaner fuels and cleaner vehicles," said Ken Brown of Transportation Energy Partners.
The DOE Clean Cities Program is the agency’s only initiative focused on the deployment of cleaner fuels, advanced technology vehicles, and alternative refueling infrastructure. Federal funding through the DOE has leveraged billions in private investment to enable vehicles using electricity, natural gas, propane, biodiesel, ethanol, and hydrogen to take hold in the marketplace. Clean Cities funds are used in communities across America to help local fleets transition to cleaner fuels and vehicles, and to develop new alternative refueling infrastructure, according to Transportation Energy Partners.
“I think the immediate and overwhelming support that we received from the fleet industry really helped preserve the Clean Cities program that I think is so important to the alternative fuel efforts that we all find ourselves dealing with,” said Richard Battersby, CAFM, CPFP, assistant director of Public Works and executive director of the East Bay Clean Cities Coalition.