In a bold and sort of unexpected move, Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell has signed an executive order calling for widespread use of natural gas, electric or other alternative-fueled vehicles throughout the Commonwealth.

The Virginia Office of Fleet Management Services, which oversees approximately 4,000 passenger-type vehicles used by some 175 state agencies and institutions, will be tasked with replacing much of its fleet with alternative-fuel vehicles.

Effective immediately, Virginia is to, "pursue all practicable and cost-effective options to promote the use of alternative fuel vehicles." Increased use of alternative fuel vehicles holds, according to Governor McDonnel, the potential to, "reduce our dependence on foreign oil, support the expansion of private-sector businesses and create new jobs here in the Commonwealth."

Governor McDonnell says the state's "all fuel approach" provides the Commonwealth with the best opportunity to meet its goals. Hit the jump to check out Virginia's approved list of alt-fuel vehicles.

[Source: Virginia.gov]
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Governor McDonnell Signs Legislation and Executive Order Beginning Transition of State Vehicles to Alternative Fuels

– Legislation Promotes the Use of Alternative Fuel Vehicles; Executive Order Establishes State Alternative Fuel Plan for Thousands of State-Owned Vehicles –


RICHMOND – Governor Bob McDonnell today ceremonially signed two pieces of legislation that promote the use of alternative fuel vehicles in the Commonwealth. He also signed a new executive order setting out the state alternative fuel plan required by House Bill 2282. The governor was joined by delegates Danny Marshall (R-Danville) and David Bulova (D-Fairfax); Secretary of Administration, Lisa Hicks-Thomas; Secretary of Natural Resources, Doug Domenech; Deputy Secretary of Natural Resources and Senior Advisor on Energy, Maureen Matsen; Director of the Department of General Services, Rich Sliwoski; and representatives from manufacturers and retailers of alternative fuel vehicles and components. The legislation was signed during a morning event at the Department of General Service's Office of Fleet Management Services in Richmond. The Office of Fleet Management Services oversees approximately 4,000 passenger-type vehicles, used by more than 175 state agencies and institutions. Fourteen alternative fuel vehicles and two alternative fuel vehicle chargers were also on display at the signing ceremony.

Flanked by alternative fuel vehicles, Governor McDonnell remarked, "As we continue on the path toward making Virginia the 'Energy Capital of the East Coast,' it is important that we pursue all practicable and cost-effective options to promote the use of alternative fuel vehicles. Increased use of alternative fuel vehicles holds the potential to help reduce our dependence on foreign oil, support the expansion of private-sector businesses and create new jobs here in the Commonwealth. This potential is why, in my administration, Virginia is pursuing an 'all fuels approach' to the vehicles it uses in conducting its business. The legislation and executive order that I am signing today will provide the private sector an opportunity to develop creative partnerships to help the commonwealth meet its goals.

"I am pleased to see so many representatives from private-sector manufacturers and retailers of alternative fuel vehicles and components join us for this signing," Governor McDonnell continued. "These entrepreneurs and other private sector partners will be critical to our success."

Delegate Danny Marshall (R-Danville) said, "My bill connects efficiency of the government fleet with job creation. When we take steps to move to alternative energy usage for our state fleet, we also encourage all the Virginia producers of alternative energy. In Southern Virginia, we can connect this with the research being done at the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research, with producers like Piedmont Biofuels and others. It can be a boost to alternative fuel production and usage across the Commonwealth."

To read Governor McDonnell's executive order #36, please visit here: http://governor.virginia.gov/Issues/ExecutiveOrders/

Alternative Vehicles Represented at Today's Bill Signing:

Type of Vehicle / Company

CNG demo van / Baker Equipment

100% electric, Nissan LEAF / Nissan North America

Freightliner CNG truck / Virginia Truck Center

Roush F150 Ford - Dedicated Propane Powered / MetroLawn (a Heritage Propane division)

Encore Prowler 61" Mower - Dedicated Propane Powered / MetroLawn (a Heritage Propane division)

Mitsubishi EV iMiev / Mitsubishi Motors North America

F-250 Biodeisel Truck (Ford) / Richmond Ford Lincoln

2012 Ford Focus Electric / Provided by Ford Motor Company in Dearborn, MI

Transit Connect Electric (Ford mini-van) / Richmond Ford Lincoln

Roush LPG Van / Virginia Clean Cities

Biodiesel Tank Delivery Truck / Phillips Energy

CNG Garbage Vehicle / City of Richmond
Dept. of Public Works

2011 Audi Q7 TDI / Volkswagen Group of America

Alliance Auto Gas propane/gas hybrid / Tripp Greene

Mercury Grand Marquis / Tripp Greene

Eaton Electric Vehicle Chargers / Eaton Corporation


Alternative Fuels Legislation Signed Today:

HB2282 (Marshall) – Establishing a plan for vehicles to use alternative fuels

Requires the director of the Department of General Services, in conjunction with the secretary of administration and the governor's senior advisor on energy, to develop a plan providing for the replacement of vehicles owned by the Commonwealth with vehicles that operate using natural gas, electricity, or other alternative fuels, to the greatest extent practicable, considering available infrastructure, the location and use of vehicles, capital and operating costs, and potential for fuel savings.

HB2105 (Bulova) – Excludes third party retail sales of vehicle charging electricity from qualification as a "public utility," "public service corporation," or "public service company."

Allows Virginia retailers to offer electric vehicle charging stations for drivers, providing more locations and choices for electric vehicle charging throughout the Commonwealth.

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