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This EV owner was the first-ever registered EV owner in her rural county

Joanne With her Tesla At Talleyrand Park Bellefonte, PA

This EV owner was the first-ever registered EV owner in her rural county

Meet Joanne of Bellefonte, PA. As the first registered owner of an EV in her county, Joanne has been driving the same EV for more than a decade — paving the way for EV adoption to continue in her community. 


In the summer of 2013, I had an accident driving my Honda Accord. It had 250k+ miles on it, so I knew it was time to buy a new car. My husband and I started looking for a hybrid, and saw there was an EV open house in Harrisburg, PA. We decided to go — with no real intention of buying one. However, when we drove it, we were so impressed. It was quiet, moved quickly, was comfortable, and we knew it was better for the environment. We decided to buy it, and I became the first resident of Centre County, PA to be a registered EV owner. 

Ev owner charging tesla in garage

When I first purchased my EV, there were only 27 Tesla superchargers throughout the entire country. This gave me some range anxiety and made my first year of owning an EV a little tricky to navigate. I relied on my own research to find chargers and primarily used a combo of Plugshare and Tesla chargers. I also installed a Level 2 charger at my home. Since then, I’ve never had an issue with charging. 


The cost savings is my favorite part about owning and driving an EV. It’s a great feeling driving past a gas station knowing I never have to stop there. Before buying my EV, I had been spending $150 per month on gas! Now that we’ve added solar and a battery backup, our only cost is $10 per month to connect to the electric grid. Charging at Tesla superchargers is also free, grandfathered in with our 2013 purchase of our Tesla. 



The IRA offers incentives for communities to create Climate Action Plans including transportation improvements like installing municipal EV chargers. Individuals can also partner with one another and local organizations to install community solar or fund an EV charging co-op.

Additionally, we received a $7,500 tax rebate when we bought our EV, which was key to our decision. To any others considering making the switch to an EV, I’d recommend looking into what tax credits are available to reduce the cost. You can also look at used EVs or even consider leasing an EV. Many municipalities will offer free charging, so while an EV may be a higher cost upfront, in the long run, you will save a lot of money.