Missouri wants ideas on how to spend money from Volkswagen settlement

The cheating scandal that triggered a $14 billion settlement from Volkswagen could translate into more electric vehicles and charging stations in Missouri over the next decade.

As part of a plan being crafted by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, the state is requesting comments on how it should spend about $41 million from the state’s share of the massive legal settlement with the German automaker. The first public meeting on the matter is set for Monday in Jefferson City.

Organizers are planning on as many as 100 people attending the meeting, including representatives from environmental groups, utilities, cities and airports.

Volkswagen settled with the U.S. Department of Justice in 2016 after it was discovered that the company violated federal clean air laws when it equipped nearly 600,000 diesel vehicles sold in the U.S. with devices designed to beat emissions tests.

The settlement allows states to spend up to 15 percent of their share of the funds on zero-emissions vehicle infrastructure, such as electric vehicle charging stations. The remaining money would go toward replacing diesel vehicles, such as school buses and city buses.

There is no firm date for when Missouri might begin tapping into the money, but could begin as early as mid- to late-2018.

Read more: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

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