Even though Hudson Town Meeting voters eventually accepted an initial proposal to acquire traditional gas-powered automobiles, the matter sparked debate on November 15 when some voters indicated an interest in acquiring electric vehicles. “As we all likely know, there is a worldwide climate crisis going on right now, and the only [option] is to cut greenhouse gas emissions,” Tina Grosowsky stated.

The budget included $208,000 for 3 new Hudson Police Department cruisers as well as $33,170 for a four-wheel-drive Ford Explorer for the inspection department. The proposal asked for a total transfer of $993,574 from the town stabilization fund to be used for public works, fire, police, inspection, and IT initiatives.

The state has approved a climate roadmap, according to Grosowsky, which includes a goal to minimize carbon emissions. The goal of such a plan is to cut emissions by half by 2030. “We’re only 8 years away from 2030,” Grosowsky added. “We need to get to work electrifying automobiles and buildings to minimize emissions.”

“I believe our town will begin to buy electric vehicles in the near future,” she remarked. “How are you going to go about doing that?” According to Grosowsky, some communities have bought electric police cruisers. The Select Board will take electric cruisers under advisement for further investigation, according to Executive Assistant Thomas Gregory.

Hudson, he noted, has been recognized as a green neighborhood. When it comes to deciding the operational needs of its cars, Gregory stated the town relies on the department heads. According to him, those department heads then make recommendations on the types of cars they require.

“I believe some of these cars are excellent candidates for conversion to electric vehicles,” said Andrew Massa, a member of the Finance Committee. Other departments have purchased automobiles, according to Massa and Grosowsky. “It’ll happen. Whether we participate in it or not, it will happen. “The later we start, the more expensive it will be,” Massa explained.

Massa, on the other hand, was in favor of passing the item in issue, even though the discussion was taking place at the eleventh hour. Grosowsky demanded assurances that a strategy would be in place the next moment Town Meeting is requested to approve similar expenditures.

“I’m not in a situation this evening to render any assurances, really tangible assurances for the future,” Gregory said, “but what I am going to say relative to the acquisition of electric cars is that there are several things to consider that require to be built infrastructure-wise, compatibility-wise, and battery operation in cold weather.”

Others spoke out against the use of electric police cruisers. “I have an issue with cruisers being electric cars because if they’re completely electric and running radios as well as sitting idle, it takes time to charge,” homeowner Tom McCoy explained. “As a result, such cars are out of service when they need to be recharged.” He stated that he supports hybrid automobiles.

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