Port Jeff village officials are considering installing an electric car charger into an existing parking space toward the west end of the lot off Barnum Avenue.
Nick Dattilo, a salesperson for Nesconset-based electrical supplies company Kelly & Hayes, presented to the village board Nov. 18 about the possibility of installing a Charge Point electric vehicle charging station. Each station comes with two extendable charging ports and can be accessed with either an app or with a device that usually comes with a standard electric vehicle.
Kevin Wood, parking and mobility administrator, said the village is looking to make use of a New York State Energy Research and Development grant, which will provide up to an 80 percent rebate for such projects, from $250,000 up to a max of $500,000. The village would have to put the money upfront to be reimbursed. Mayor Margot Garant said she wanted to make sure the grant was in place before signing any contract for Charge Point.
Wood said the village could benefit, as the demographic of electric car owners is on the rise.
“As soon as you drive in [to the parking lot] you drive right into these,” Wood said. “I just like the idea that a person could come to Rocketship Park with their kids and charge their car.”
Officials said the hope is people with electric vehicles would shop while waiting for their car to charge. Each charge takes from three to five hours for a full charge.
The station includes an 18-foot retractable cord that winds up like a vacuum electric cord.
Though each station comes with two ports, Wood said he would like to see only one port be used with one space as a pilot. He added the village’s parking committee is usually hesitant to give up even a single space.
“If we saw it being used a lot, we’d open the second one up,” he said. “This town can’t afford to give away spaces.”
There are several electric vehicle charging stations in the immediate area. One set is in the parking lot of Heritage Park in Mount Sinai, and another set is provided at Stony Brook University, whose services are not billed for use.
The village board would still have to decide upon cost to the driver, with the rate depending on how long a car is being charged. Garant mentioned, depending on cost, the service could be offered free to attract people into downtown Port Jeff.
The board plans to reassess the feasibility of the charging station at the next board meeting, Dec. 2.
Wood said his goal is for installation of the charger next to Rocketship Park to take place in the first quarter of 2020.