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Montgomery County Council Passes Nine Environmental Bills

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The Montgomery County Council passed a range of environmental bills Tuesday, including one that deals with charger-equipped parking spaces for electric cars.
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The Montgomery County Council passed a range of environmental bills Tuesday, including one that deals with charger-equipped parking spaces for electric cars.

In Maryland, the Montgomery County council commemorated Earth Day by passing nine different bills regarding environmental matters.

The measures range from increasing the amount of parking spaces that have chargers for electric cars to zoning changes that allow residents and businesses to install larger solar panels.

Councilman Roger Berliner sponsored all of them, saying it's up to local governments to take actions to slow climate change. "If we as a county do what we can, and if other metropolitan areas around the country do the same, then we may be able to bypass the dysfunction in our Congress that prevents our country from doing what it must," Berliner said.

Council Vice President George Leventhal mentioned that the county has previously tried to push biodiesel vehicles the same way it's trying to do with today's passage of measures aiding electric cars. But Leventhal says biodiesel has yet to take off, and whether electric cars do is similarly murky.

"Montgomery County has a unique advantage in that so many of our population came to this area to work for or in connection with the government. And so we have a body politic in Montgomery County that strongly supports what Franklin Roosevelt called 'bold, persistent experimentation.'"

All the bills passed unanimously. The measure regarding parking spots mandates that any new building or lot that has 100 spaces must have at least one with an electric vehicle charger.

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