Clean Fuels Ohio is working with Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (D- Toledo), the Chair of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development, to continue funding for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities alternative fuels and vehicle deployment program as part of the 2020 federal budget. Clean Fuels Ohio is one of close to ninety U.S. DOE-designated Clean Cities coalitions.
The mission of the Clean Cities program is to foster the economic, environmental and energy security of the United States by working locally to advance affordable, domestic transportation fuels, such as compressed natural gas (CNG), electricity, propane, biodiesel, renewable natural gas (RNG) and hydrogen, plus energy efficient mobility systems and other fuels saving technologies and practices. Funding for Clean Cities was eliminated under President Trump’s budget proposal. Clean Fuels Ohio and other coalitions receive only a small fraction of annual budgets from the program, but coalitions can access critical technical resources from the program, access the national network of peer coalitions and compete for competitively awarded funding.
Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur, Chair of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development
“The proposed cuts to the clean cities program would be devastating to the kinds of service Clean Fuels Ohio is able to provide to fleets from all over Ohio,” commented Jason Phillips, Policy Director for Clean Fuels Ohio. “We have met with Congresswoman Kaptur’s staff regarding this issue. For the small amount of funding we receive, our program is able to leverage it at least 10 times the value in deployment projects for every dollar invested. This investment is a win-win for Ohio.”
The House Appropriations Committee has authority over federal discretionary spending and determines spending levels for the entire federal government through a series of 12 separate annual appropriations bills. Due to the vast scope of the federal budget, the Appropriations Committee is broken down into subcommittees. Kaptur, a long-time supporter of alternative transportation fuel, was appointed Chair of the Energy and Water Development Subcommittee in January. The Subcommittee will make adjustments to the President's budget and will send it to the U.S. Senate once it passes the House.
“The Clean Cities program is one of the most productive federal programs in terms of the payback for dollars invested,” stated Darryl Syler, Fleet Manager for the City of Dublin. “Clean Fuels Ohio was extremely helpful with technological and logistical resources when we made our transition to CNG and were building our station. They also connected us with vendors and suppliers and helped coordinate training where it was needed. These are the kinds of services funding this program will lead to and it is an important service to provide for Ohio’s fleets.”
Clean Fuels Ohio urged the subcommittee to restore the cuts proposed to the program and focus a large part of that funding on vehicle and station deployment projects across the country. If both houses of Congress and the President agree to the 2020 budget on schedule, it would be in place by October of 2019.