Jackson, Wyoming – Joe Biden boasted two years ago that the CEO of a major electric bus manufacturer was making him “look good” and federal dollars poured into the company. Now those words have come back to haunt him as an entire town’s electric bus fleet backed by the company broke down.
The Cowboy State Daily reported Tuesday that Teton County and the town of Jackson wanted a low-emission transit system for the county. The Southern Teton Area Rapid Transit (START) system, a joint operation between Jackson and Teton County, had bought eight electric buses to complement its fleet of 31.
But the entire bus fleet broke down so the town’s transit system is now solely relying on its diesel fleet. The last of the electric buses went out of service two months ago and some of the broken buses have been awaiting parts for months.
Cristina Laila previously reported the electric bus manufacturer that supplied START, California-based Proterra, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy last month. Proterra enjoyed large financial support from American taxpayers courtesy of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which was signed into law back in 2021. Laila also notes that dim-witted Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm was deeply invested in the company.
In addition, Biden also participated in a virtual tour of Proterra that year. In the video below, he can be seen hailing then-CEO Jack Allen and makes a remark we can now say came back to haunt him:
The fact is, you’re making me look good.
Biden went on to discuss a plan to build 50,000 charging stations with taxpayer dollars.
The Cowboy State Daily says the company plans to continue operating while the bankruptcy case proceeds and has promised to deliver buses that are on order. But START Director Bruce Abel told the paper he has no clue when the parts will arrive nor when the buses will start running again.
We’re evaluating our options to see how we can work through that and make sure that they can be on the road.
Why the company would even bother is an open question. Abel admitted that when the START electric buses did run, their performance degraded during the winter months, which is a common problem with electric vehicles.
Abel explained that during the summer months, the buses could go all day without needing a charge. But when it got colder, the batteries would lose significant range.
Diesel buses, of course, do not have this problem. No wonder why Wyoming legislators want to ban the sale of electric vehicles by 2035.