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Suffolk County Legislature approves funding for electric buses

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Marc A. Hermann
/
Metropolitan Transportation Authority
Construction on a new all-electric bus facility will commence next year, as part of the MTA’s commitment to a zero-emissions fleet.

The Suffolk County Legislature has voted 16-1 to approve funding for 12 battery-electric buses.

The $5.3 million investment is the first step in Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone’s plan to transition to an all-electric fleet by 2030.

“It is our job on the local level to ensure we are leading the way and doing everything we can to reduce our carbon footprint and harmful emissions from transportation to create a cleaner, healthier environment for our residents,” Bellone said. “This funding will help Suffolk achieve its goal of a zero-emission fleet by 2030.”

According to the U.S Environmental Protection Agency, electric buses have zero tailpipe emissions, provide a quieter ride, and lower fuel and maintenance costs.

The county aims to bid for the buses early next year and receive them by 2024.

The program is funded by $4.3 million in federal funds, more than $330,000 in state money and over $730,000 in county bonds, according to county documents.

The legislature also voted to spend more than $12.5 million to purchase 16 hybrid-electric buses. The county currently has 73 hybrid vehicles.

Molly is a reporter covering Fairfield County. She also produces Long Story Short, a podcast exploring public policy issues across Connecticut.