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City of Jackson Welcomes its first green vehicle

The City of Jackson welcomes its first energy efficient vehicle to the city’s fleet. 

On May 6, 2021, the City of Jackson received a hybrid (gas/electric) 2021 Toyota RAV-4.  This is the first energy-efficient vehicle the City has owned.  This purchase was made possible by the grants from Amador County Transportation Commission (ACTC) and Amador County Air District (ACAD).  

ACTC had a program called Congestion Mitigation/Air Quality Fund, which was originated by the Federal Highway Administration.  ACAD has long supported programs and purchases that intend to reduce pollution and improve air quality.  The City of Jackson applied for both grants and was awarded with enough funds from both agencies to purchase two energy efficiency vehicles.  City Planner Susan Peters, Public Works Superintendent Bree Wilder, Former Sup. Max Godde, Former Council Member Keith Sweet, and Mayor Stimpson were instrumental in securing the grants for the City. 

The new RAV4 replaced the Building Department’s 2005 Ford Ranger.  Building Inspector Michael Hooper has been assigned to the new Hybrid RAV-4.  Michael said he is proud to be the first employee driving a green vehicle.  The RAV-4 Hybrid averages 41 miles per gallon of gas while the 2005 Ranger gets 14 miles per gallon of gas.  Being a gas/electric hybrid vehicle, RAV-4 Hybrid only produces 1,317 pounds of carbon dioxide. Replacing the Ford with the RAV-4 Hybrid cuts the annual carbon dioxide production by 2,540 pounds.  This purchase achieves the goals of increasing renewable energy and reduction of air pollution. 

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Building Inspector, Michael Hooper, standing by the 2021 Toyota RAV-4 Hybrid

Due to Covid-restrictions and shortages of steel and auto parts, it took a long time to locate a hybrid vehicle.  “When it finally arrived last week, it felt like a celebration,” City Manager Kimball said.  “This is the first energy efficient vehicle for Jackson.  I believe this might be one of the first for all four Amador municipalities and Amador County” Kimball added.  Kimball wants to thank ACTC and ACAD for the funds and continued partnerships.

Jackson has been at the forefront of cutting-edge energy efficient programs.  The City has earned the California League of Cities Beacon Awards for implementing energy efficiency measures. The City adopted an Energy Action Plan in 2015 with goals to increase renewable energy use and energy efficiency.  Since the adoption of the Plan, the City has replaced the majority of city owned light fixtures with LED fixtures.  The City also owns and operates two level-2 electric charging stations - one located in the lower-level City Hall parking lot and one at the 49er parking lot.  The City is leveraging other ACTC and ACAD funds to upgrade those municipal charging stations soon.  In addition to municipal charging stations, Jackson is also a home for Tesla supercharging stations which are located at the Busi parking lot behind Mel & Fey’s Diner.  

Jackson’s Energy Action Plan can be found on the city website under the Planning Department.  If you would like to learn more about Jackson’s initiatives to promote energy efficiency measures, City Manager Yvonne Kimball can be reached at 209-223-1646.