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During electric vehicle event, governor admits demand has waned

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(The Center Square) – Gov. J.B. Pritzker, whose goal is to have one million electric vehicles on Illinois roads within six years, admits demand for EVs has tailed off.

Pritzker joined the Illinois Manufacturers Association and representatives from the EV industry Tuesday for the first ever “EV Showcase Day” at the governor’s mansion in Springfield. Pritzker said Illinois has maintained its status as a leader in EV manufacturing and battery production, but admits demand for EVs has decreased.

“People have complained about what has happened to the EV industry,” said Pritzker. “Eventually as industries grow, you come down from a couple of hundred percent growth to a hundred percent growth to fifty percent growth and then just a double digit growth, and that’s what we’re seeing I think in the United States.”

In Illinois, EV charging anxiety may still be an issue, especially in rural areas of the state. According to an EV infrastructure study by LendingTree, Illinois has 3.3 charging ports per 10,000 drivers. That is compared to 33 in the District of Columbia.

Illinois has been offering incentives for EV-related companies to relocate or expand in the state. State Rep. Brad Halbrook, R-Shelbyville, is not a fan of Pritzker’s EV policies.

“If people want EVs, they will buy them. If they don’t want the EV, they won’t buy them,” said Halbrook. “No amount of taxpayer-funded subsidies will ever change that.”

Halbrook added the massive tax incentive package given to EV manufacturer Rivian Automotive equates to a $1.5 million for every job created.

The American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers said federal and state governments are fast tracking policies to limit consumer choice and end the availability of new gas cars.

“In a few short years in California, you will absolutely, without qualification, not be able to buy a car that runs on gas or diesel,” said CEO Chet Thompson. “That’s 35% of the new car market and the rest of the country two-thirds of cars are forced to be electric.”