Cedar Park City Council on Jan. 9 approved an ordinance to allow the city to charge parking fees at electric car charging stations—which should fast-track the installation of three such stations within the city, according to officials.
In early 2019, City Council authorized a five-year lease with ChargePoint, a company that operates and maintains publicly and privately owned electric charging stations across the U.S., according to city documents. The three dual-port chargers were to be installed within a month at City Hall, 450 Cypress Creek Road; the Recreation Center, 1435 Main St.; and the Public Library, 550 Discovery Blvd.
ChargePoint was scheduled to install and maintain those stations for a maximum annual price of $2,400 per station, for a total of $7,200 annually, according to city documents.
However, the original plan called for free electricity at the stations, prompting some residents to criticize the city for paying for fuel for some residents but not others who own gasoline-powered vehicles, according to Mayor Pro Tem Mel Kirkland.
Monday’s ordinance allows the city to charge a parking fee of $2 per hour in order to recoup the cost of electricity at the stations. According to documents, city staff researched other Austin-area charging stations and determined that $2 per hour would result in a "full recovery" of expenses for electricity.
According to state law, only utility companies can charge for electricity, which prompted the city to create a parking fee, Kirkland said.
According to a map on its website, www.chargepoint.com, ChargePoint has only one other public charging stations inside the city limits, at 12930 W. Parmer Lane. Five public stations are located just south of the city, according to the map.
Each station will be able to charge two vehicles simultaneously, according to documents.
Council approved the new ordinance by a 5-1 vote. Rodney Robinson voted against the ordinance without comment.
Council member Tim Kelly was absent from the meeting.