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Electric Vehicles Shown in Burlington

Burlington (ap) — Dealers and supporters of electric vehicles gathered in Burlington on Saturday to raise awareness about the vehicles and announce new financing initiatives to support more of them in Vermont.

The event was held on Church Street with electric vehicles from several local dealers on display.

Officials also announced two new financing initiatives to support the vehicles’ use. The first is to expand the state infrastructure bank loan program administered by the Vermont Economic Development Agency, officials said.

Under the program, communities and businesses can get loans to build and install electric vehicle charging stations at a fixed interest rate of 1 percent. The second initiative, created the state agencies of natural resources and commerce and community development provides matching grants to build a network of community charging stations within Vermont’s 24 designated downtowns.

Providing charging opportunities in places people visit will encourage electric vehicle use, improve air quality and combat climate change, said Natural Resources Secretary Deborah Markowitz.

There were nearly 300 electric vehicles registered in Vermont as of July 31, according to state data, said organizers of the event.