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Car dealer hopes electric car means green for Tucson charities

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 Auto dealer Jim Click is raffling off a 2012 Nissan LEAF in support of local nonprofit organizations.

Click said he'll give 40,000 raffle tickets to participating organizations, free of charge, over the next seven months.

The nonprofits will keep 100 percent of the funds they raise from selling the tickets to support their services and programs.

Tickets are priced at $25, or five for $100. The LEAF is valued at $37,000.

Click launched the campaign at an event Wednesday, Green Consumer Day.

Raffle tickets are now being issued to eligible 501c3 organizations, which are encouraged to sell as many tickets as possible before the April 20 deadline. A live drawing will be held for the winning ticket on Arbor Day, April 27.

"We've done four of these raffles over the past ten years, and raised about $1.5 million for local groups," Click said Wednesday night.

"I'd like to raise another million dollars" by raffling the LEAF, he said.

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Click said that while many local nonprofits have struggled because of the poor economy, "I believe the economy is picking up."

"If (those groups) are still in business after the last three years, they're to be admired."

"These funds will help them expand their services," he said.

"The LEAF is a great vehicle," Click said. "It gets 80-90 miles on one charge. It's great for getting to work and back."

"It's completely green," he said.

Colleen Crowninshield, energy program manager for the Pima Association of Governments, arranged for the raffle winner to receive a free home charging station and installation. The Eaton Corporation will donate the charging station, valued at $3,500, and Interstates will provide the installation, valued at $1,200.

"Everyone wins in this campaign," Crowninshield said in a news release put out by Click.

"The charities will be able to raise significant funds, the winner of the raffle will receive a state-of-the-art, eco-friendly car, charging station and installation, and the entire community will benefit from one more car on the road that leaves no carbon footprint," she said.

Eligible non-profit organizations wishing to participate in the fundraising campaign can make arrangements to pick up their tickets by contacting the Nissan LEAF raffle management team at 342-5210, or by e-mail at newleaf@russellpublic.com.

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