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Austin Energy sees electric-vehicle charging stations in its future

Austin's electric utility is getting ready for an influx of energy-efficient cars that will be able to recharge their battery systems by plugging into the city's electric system. Austin Energy expects to build one or more public charging stations for those greener vehicles, called plug-in hybrids, within the next year or two, said Karl Rábago, the utility's vice president of distributed energy services.  "We are figuring out what we are going to build and where," he said.  The utility is working with leading hybrid carmakers, including General Motors Co. and Chrysler Corp., and other companies to sort out the technical standards needed for a system of charging stations that would support extensive local usage of plug-in hybrids.

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