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Unique Electric Vehicle initiative for Yorkshire and Humber Local Authorities

 Local Authorties across Yorkshire & Humber will come together in Rotherham next week to discuss the potential for an innovative new programme which could see more services delivered using electric powered vehicles.

Thought to be the only proposition of its kind in the UK, councils in the Yorkshire and Humber region are looking at how a collective approach involving funding, sustainable investment and joint purchasing power may be able to offer electric vehicles to deliver services in a way that is effective and financially viable in the current economic climate.

Cllr Roger Stone, Leader of Rotherham Borough Council and Vice Chair of Local Government Yorkshire and Humber, said: ”Devising innovative and different ways of working has been one of the driving forces of local government in Yorkshire and Humber for many years. Protecting the environment is also one of our key priorities both for our generation and those to follow. Local Authorities have a major part to play in ensuring that our services are delivered in innovative ways that are not only best for the enviroment but is also cost effective for our citizens.

”Councils across Yorkshire and Humber are facing unprecedented cuts to our budgets and are working hard to make sure that we protect our citizens and local communities through these difficult times. Accessing European funding for projects such as these help us develop innovative and effective new ways of working while ensuring that the Local Authority services that people value and need are protected. We will continue to work together across Yorkshire and Humber on making sure local government remains the most innovative and cost effective part of the public sector. ”

Local Authorities and partners will meet in Rotherham Town Hall on 23 February to map out the possibilities for a region wide proposition for developing a funding bid or creating an investment pot to enable local authorities to see electric vehicles as a viable option for service delivery. The focus will be on services that are particularly reliant on vehicle use such as school transport, waste management, housing repairs, parks and recreation, roads maintenance and social care.

Electric vehicles can be charged at a standard electric socket and are designed for short range, predictable travel with frequent stop and go driving – ideal for local government use. As well as attending a meeting, partners will be viewing and test driving a Ford electric van which will be on display outside Rotherham Town Hall.

Authorities are already looking at funding opportunities for delivering this and seeking ways to influence European Union programmes to keep a focus on climate change and assess ways that electric vehicles can be used. Discussions have also taken place with vehicle manufacturers including Ford and Renault regarding free trials and promoting the vehicles to the public sector.

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