Tuesday, November 28, 2006

RAVs to Keep Rolling in LA

The efforts of LA EV activists to keep the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power’s fleet of RAV4 EVs on the road appears to have been a success. Nate Vandershaaf, who arrived at one meeting with a bank-certified offer to purchase all 74 RAVs for $1.85 million, caught the attention of the Board of Commissioners. As did a letter of support from Congresswoman Linda Sanchez. Activists from PIA including Doug Korthof, Linda Nicholes, and a stream of EAA and PIA activists convinced one of the nation’s largest public power agencies to reconsider its decision to dump its electric cars. After open, public discussions at consecutive meetings of the Board, Commissioners overruled the staff recommendation to purchase Priuses rather than continue to lease the RAVs. In addition, LADWP consequently is negotiating a lease purchase option on some of the fleet-leased RAV4 EVs. There’s a lesson here for us all. By inserting ourselves as EV activists in the public process we can achieve results. There are numerous municipalities with leased Toyota RAV4 EVs. Now, we have precedent. Public pressure can convince lessees to persuade Toyota to allow the cars to be purchased. Let us know if your city or town has RAV4 EVs ripe for saving.

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