Charge to charge? La Crosse considers paid vehicle charging stations

City considering paid car charging...

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) - As hybrid and electric cars become more popular, some city officials worry they could be a drain on city resources.

Right now, electrical outlets at city parks are free to use, although signs are posted saying using them without a reservation is prohibited.

But some in City Hall are wondering if electric car owners should have to pay for the power and are considering adding commercialized charging stations.

City Director of Planning and Development Jason Gilman says while they're supportive of electric vehicles and renewable energy, it does cost the city $4 in electricity to charge one car, and that can add up over the course of a year.

"Every penny counts, of course, in the city's budget and we have to be careful when there are actually charges to the general taxpayer city-wide that are really being used privately," said Gilman.

The city's Board of Public Works decided Monday to aggresively look at their options for paid charging stations.

City planners say they hope to see something happen with the stations in the next year.

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