John Walsh: Ohio’s leadership opportunity for the future of commercial electric vehicles is now
Ohio is an automotive manufacturing hub in the United States. In fact, Ohio’s workforce is why we located Endera’s 250,000 square foot manufacturing facility in Ottawa. Endera is a technology company specializing in commercial electric vehicles, charging stations and software solutions.
Ohio offered an economic advantage over other states for us to manufacture quality commercial electric vehicles, including shuttle buses, school buses and box trucks, at a competitive price. To meet the growing demand for electric vehicles, Endera is rapidly expanding our employee base in the state.
Across the nation, companies such as General Motors and Ford have announced multi-billion-dollar commitments to manufacturing electric vehicles. Companies like Endera can help Ohioans secure a leadership position in EV manufacturing while creating high-quality jobs and ample opportunities for training and advancement for Ohioans. We want Ohio to be at the forefront of this industry, and that means jobs for Ohioans.
However, if we are going to attain that leadership position, we need to make sure that the state is taking steps now to ensure that Ohio is not left behind. We need to make sure that we have the proper policy framework to protect and grow this industry and Ohio’s interests. SB 307, the Accelerating Ohio’s Auto Industry bill recently introduced by Sen. Michael Rulli, will help us get there.
SB 307 aims to protect and expand Ohio’s vehicle manufacturing and supply chain industry. The bill will:
• Protect and grow Ohio jobs by investing in workforce training and factory retooling.
• Encourage growth in the Ohio EV market through fleet and consumer vehicle incentives.
• Create a state EV task force and electrification plan to help Ohio become a leader in electric vehicle production and adoption.
• Unlock much-needed investment in EV charging infrastructure.
Accelerating Ohio’s Auto Industry is an aggressive, multi-part legislative package that helps maintain and grow Ohio’s auto industry for future generations. It sends a strong signal to the industry that Ohio is serious about remaining a strong partner to the auto industry as it shifts to EV production.
Ohio already has an incredible competitive advantage, and it is critical to retain that. We need to ensure Ohio does not get left behind. Incentives in this bill will help cement our state’s leadership role by encouraging investing in the factory retooling, equipment and job training necessary to promote the EV industrial base. Incentives to catalyze manufacturing for EVs in the United States are good for America, good for Ohio and good for jobs.
John Walsh is the founder and CEO of Endera, which manufactures shuttle buses in Ottawa. His column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Lima News editorial board or AIM Media, owner of The Lima News.