SECTION 1. The General Laws are hereby amended by inserting after chapter 161d the following chapter:-
Section1. The purpose of this chapter is to transition all of the Commonwealth’s buses to zero-emissions technology in order to avoid pollution of our air, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve the health and quality of life of Massachusetts residents.
Section 2. As used in this chapter the following words shall have the following meanings unless the context clearly requires otherwise:
“School bus” means any motor vehicle used for the transportation of school pupils and school personnel to and from school, or for the transportation of children enrolled in a camp or recreational program.
“School bus operator” means any school district or contractor which owns or operates school buses in the Commonwealth.
“Transit agency” or “transit agencies” means the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, created under Chapter 161A and any of the regional transit authorities created under Chapter 161B.
“Electric bus” means a bus with zero tailpipe emissions. (A) A battery electric bus shall qualify as an electric bus, and (B) A fuel cell electric bus shall qualify as an electric bus.
Section 3. All transit agencies and school bus operators in the Commonwealth shall operate only electric buses by no later than December 31, 2035.
Section 4. In any given calendar year, transit agencies and school bus operators must operate a minimum number of electric buses as determined by the following schedule: (A) By December 31, 2025, twenty-five percent of the total number of buses must be electric buses; (B) By December 31, 2030, fifty percent of the total number of buses must be electric buses; and (C) By December 31, 2035, all buses must be electric buses.
Section 5. Each transit agency and school bus operator must submit an Electric Bus Rollout Plan (Rollout Plan) to the Secretary of Transportation that includes all of the following components: (A) A goal of full transition to electric buses by 2035 with careful planning that as much as possible avoids early retirement of conventional internal combustion engine buses; (B) Identification of the types of electric bus technologies a transit agency or school bus operator is planning to deploy, such as battery electric or fuel cell electric bus; (C) A schedule for construction of facilities and infrastructure modifications or upgrades, including charging, fueling, and maintenance facilities, to deploy and maintain electric buses. This schedule must identify the general location of each facility, type of infrastructure, service capacity of an infrastructure, and a timeline for construction; (D) A schedule for electric and conventional internal combustion engine bus purchases and lease options. This schedule for bus replacements must identify the bus types, fuel types, and number of buses; (E) A schedule for conversion of conventional internal combustion engine buses to electric buses, if any. This schedule for bus conversion must identify the number of buses, bus types, the propulsion system being removed and converted to; (F) A plan on how the transit agency or school bus operator plans to deploy electric buses; (G) A training plan and schedule for electric bus drivers and maintenance and repair staff; and (H) Identification of potential funding sources.
Section 6. Transit agencies and school bus operators may request an extension or exemption from the electric bus requirements set forth in section 4 as provided in this section. A Request for Extension or Request for Exemption for a particular calendar year’s compliance obligation must be submitted to the Secretary of Transportation by November 30th of that year. A Request for Extension must demonstrate as provided below that at least one of the following circumstances exists beyond the transit agency or school bus operator’s control: (A) Delay in bus delivery is caused by the bus manufacturer; (B) Delay in bus delivery is caused by setback of construction schedule. A transit agency or school bus operator may request an extension of the requirements of section 4 if it cannot finalize the electric bus infrastructure in time to operate the purchased buses after delivery due to circumstances beyond the transit agency’s or school bus operator’s control; (C) When available electric buses at the end of battery or fuel cell stack warranty period cannot meet a transit agency’s or school bus operator’s daily mileage needs. For this purpose, the transit agency or school bus operator must show that the miles travelled between charges of a depot charging battery electric bus cannot meet the transit agency’s or school bus operator’s daily operation needs for any bus in the existing fleet; (D) When a required electric bus type cannot be purchased by a transit agency or school bus operator due to financial hardship.
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