Legislation and Funding for EVs in St. Louis

Author: Maureen McCarthy, Environmental Services Planner, East-West Gateway Council of Governments


St. Louis County and the City of St. Louis have begun converting their municipal fleets to zero-emission electric vehicles (EVs). In March 2021, Mayor Krewson signed Executive Order #68: Priority Procurement of Clean Municipal Vehicles to institutionalize the practice of purchasing clean vehicles for the municipal fleet. At the end of November 2022, St. Louis County unveiled its first municipal EV and pledged to convert 27% of its light-duty fleet to EVs by 2027. Estimates suggest each EV will save the county nearly $10,000 in fuel alone over its five-year lifetime. The City of St. Louis and St. Louis County will evaluate each gas-powered fleet vehicle and replace it with an EV when it reaches the end of its lifecycle.

Lawmakers are working to ensure our region is prepared for increased EV ownership. In 2021, both the City of St. Louis and St. Louis County passed legislation that, beginning in 2022, non-residential buildings undergoing renovation or construction are required to dedicate a percentage of their parking spots to EVs. The requirements include spots with EV supply equipment (EVSE) installed and EV ready (EVR) spots that have electrical panel capacity, conduit, and full circuit that allow for the installation of charging stations in the future. In St. Louis County, 10% of parking spaces must be EVR, and 2% must be EVSE spaces. In the City of St. Louis, 5% of parking spaces must be EVR in lots with fifty or more spaces. Fewer EVR spots will be required for parking lots with less than fifty spaces. Doing this type of work at the time of construction or renovation can cost up to 75% less than retrofitting.

Financial Incentives for EVs 

The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 included tax credits of up to $7,500 for new EVs and $4,000 for used EVs. (Please note, The IRS recenly released an updated list of cars that will qualify under new critical mineral and battery component guidelines on In Illinois, the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) offers rebates to residents for the purchase or lease of a new or pre-owned EV. Rebate amounts are available according to the following schedule: $4,000 between July 1, 2022, and June 30, 2026; $2,000 between July 1, 2026, and June 30, 2027; $1,500 beginning July 1, 2028. IEPA also began offering rebates of $1,500 to Illinois residents for the purchase of a new electric motorcycle after July 1, 2022. EV owners must apply for the rebate within 90 days of purchasing or leasing and registering the EV in Illinois. Applicants may receive only one rebate in a 10-year period. Rebate award amounts may not exceed the purchase price of the vehicle.

Funding for Charging Stations

Ameren’s Charge Ahead program—which reimburses up to 50%  of the cost of installing EV charging stations on parking lots—was set to expire at the end of the year, but the Missouri Public Service Commission extended the program until the end of 2024 or until the original funds are exhausted. Nearly $4 million in funds are available to qualified customers, which includes business owners, property owners, and municipalities. These charging stations can bring in additional revenue for businesses or be a complimentary service that may attract new customers. The incentive can be combined with federal tax credits of 6-30% that were recently extended in the Inflation Reduction Act. 

On July 1, 2022, the IEPA began offering rebates to public and private entities for installing and maintaining Level 2 and direct current fast charging (DCFC) stations (Public Act 102-0662). Rebate awards cover up to 80% of the eligible project costs. Additional rebates are available for EV charging stations deployed in underserved and environmental justice communities. For more information, see the IEPA Climate and Equitable Jobs Act website.

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources (MoDNR) previously offered grants to offset the cost of purchasing and installing publicly available EV charging stations. The grants covered up to 80% of the purchase, installation, and maintenance of Level 2 and DCFC stations, where eligible. The grant program was funded by the Volkswagen Environmental Mitigation Trust. The application period is closed, but future application announcements will be posted on the MoDNR EV Charging Stations website. 

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law establishes a Charging and Fueling Infrastructure discretionary grant program to strategically deploy publicly accessible EV-charging, hydrogen-fueling, propane-fueling, and natural gas-fueling infrastructure along designated alternative fuel corridors or in locations within communities accessible to all drivers of EVs, hydrogen vehicles, propane vehicles, and natural gas vehicles. Eligible entities include states, local governments, and others listed on the program website

Finally, the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) and the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) are seeking funding from the National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Program (NEVI), created as a result of the 2021 Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. NEVI will provide funding to states to deploy EV charging infrastructure along public roads to establish an interconnected network across the states and nation. MoDOT and IDOT received approval from the Federal Highway Administration on September 27, 2022. Missouri will receive $98.9 million of the $5 billion NEVI formula funds to deploy EV charging infrastructure, and Illinois will receive more than $148 million over the next five years. NEVI funds will cover 80% of eligible project costs.