Evolving Health and Economic Crisis Impacts on the CVA Program
- Is the program open and accepting applications?
Yes. The program is open and we are accepting applications. Our team has transitioned to a fully remote operation. We have made several other programmatic changes to protect our team’s health and safety, while also accommodating program participants who are impacted by the evolving health and economic crisis.
- I am unable to redeem my grant in the 35 day timeframe due to impacts of the evolving health and economic crisis. Can I redeem my grant in the future?
We are so sorry to hear about the challenges you are facing because of the evolving health and economic crisis. We have extended the deadline to redeem a grant by an additional 90 days. In total, grant recipients will have 125 days to redeem a grant once it has been approved. The 90-day extension applies to anyone who has already received a grant award in 2020 and anyone who receives a grant award until May 31, 2020. Grants awarded starting June 1, 2020, will have the original 35-day timeline to redeem a grant. We will continue monitoring the impacts of the evolving health and economic crisis and will consider additional changes beyond May 31, 2020, if appropriate.
- I already received a grant approval letter. Can I also get an extension to redeem a grant?
Yes. All grants approved until May 31, 2020, will have 125 days to be redeemed.
- Are 2019 tax transcripts still required starting April 15th, 2020?
If you currently have an open application or are planning to start an application, we encourage you to submit alternative income verification documentation through your online application. Instructions about what documents are accepted and how to upload are in the Income Verification section of the online application. An email with further guidance will be emailed to current participants.
- What if there are major disruptions related to the evolving health and economic crisis after April 30, 2020?
We will continue monitoring the impacts of the evolving health and economic crisis and will consider additional changes beyond May 31, 2020, if appropriate. Visit our Announcement Page for the most up-to-date information.
- Where should I get more information about the evolving health and economic crisis impact and how I can stay safe?
Please visit the California Department of Health website for information about the evolving health crisis.
- I have more questions and concerns. Who can I contact for more information?
Please visit our Announcement Page for the most up-to-date information. You can also email firstname.lastname@example.org with additional questions. We anticipate some delays in our ability to respond to questions while our team transitions to working remotely. We apologize for any delays and appreciate your patience.
- What is the current status of the program?
The Clean Vehicle Assistance Program is currently accepting new applications. The program has reopened with updated program criteria. To learn more about program updates, click here.
- How can the Clean Vehicle Assistance Program help me?
Our program helps income-qualified California residents get a new or used hybrid or electric vehicle. We do this through a combination of grants and fair financing options. Our lending partner, Beneficial State Bank, offers 8% or lower interest rate auto loans for qualified participants.
- How are we different from other programs?
We give grants, not rebates. Clean vehicle grants are awarded to individuals at the point of sale of a qualifying clean vehicle, not after the fact. If you have already purchased or leased a clean vehicle, we cannot give you a grant. The Clean Vehicle Rebate Program offers rebates, which are awarded after a qualifying clean vehicle purchase.
- How long does the application process take?
It can take as little as three weeks or as long as three months to complete the application process. It depends on how long you take to complete the 5 steps of the application, how many applications we are processing when you submit your application, and how quickly we can verify your eligibility from the documentation you provide. On average, it takes people around six weeks to qualify for a clean vehicle grant. We process applications on a first-come, first-serve basis.
- Where does the money come from?
The Clean Vehicle Assistance Program is funded by California Climate Investments, a statewide initiative that puts billions of Cap-and-Trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening the economy and improving public health and the environment—particularly in disadvantaged communities.
Clean Vehicle Grants
- How much can I get towards a new or used hybrid or electric vehicle?
The grant amount you can qualify for depends on your household’s gross annual income. The maximum grant amounts are currently $2,500 for hybrid cars and $5,000 for plug-in cars. You can learn more about what grant amounts you could potentially qualify for here.
- Do I need to repay the grant?
Grants do not need to be repaid if all program criteria is met.
- Will my grant application or Approval Letter expire?
Yes. You will have 60 days to complete a grant application. If you are approved for a grant, you will have 35 days to redeem the grant by purchasing a qualifying clean vehicle at one of our Network Dealerships.
Charging Station Grants
- I have questions about the charging station grant, who should I contact?
- How can I get a charging station grant?
If you purchase a plug-in hybrid vehicle (PHEV) or a Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV) with a clean vehicle grant, you are eligible to receive a charging station grant too. You can redeem this grant by contacting our partner, GRID Alternatives, but please wait 30 days after you purchase a vehicle with a grant. Learn more about the charging station grants here.
Eligible Clean Vehicles
- What vehicles are eligible for a grant?
New and used hybrid, plug-in hyrbid (PHEV) and battery electric vehicles (BEV) are eligible for purchase or lease with grant funds. Used vehicles must be 8 years old or new with 75,000 miles or less to be eligible for a clean vehicle grant. If the vehicle has been recalled or does not have a clean title, it is not eligible.
- What are the benefits of driving hybrid or electric vehicles?
Many clean vehicle owners appreciate that hybrid and electric vehicles cost less to own and contribute less to air pollution because of their high fuel economy. Hybrid and electric vehicles are increasingly common and affordable and range in size from compact models to larger SUVs, so you will have many options to choose from when shopping for a clean vehicle that will fit your transportation needs and budget. If you choose a clean vehicle with an electric motor, charging can be as easy as plugging your vehicle into a 3-prong outlet at your home. You could also install a Level 2 charging station in your home or use public charging stations for faster charging.
- What would my monthly payment be?
Monthly payments vary based on the size of your loan and the term length of your loan. For example, if you received a $5,000 grant for an electric car and take out a $5,000 loan to be repaid over 4 years, you would only need to repay $5,000 and your monthly payment would be around $122 a month. Keep in mind, based on the vehicle you select and the amount financed your payment may be higher or lower.
- Can I use my clean vehicle grant at any dealership?
No, we do have some restrictions because we strive to only work with dealers that have proven to treat consumers fairly. Our network of approved dealerships includes hundreds of dealerships across California, see our list of network dealerships here.
- Can I use a clean vehicle grant to lease a vehicle?
Yes, however, we recommend doing extensive research before entering a lease agreement. We are unable to ensure fair leasing practices from the leasing companies, so it is your responsibility to negotiate a fair lease that will meet the program requirements. There are many resources on the internet to help you prepare for a lease, such as this video. Grant recipients are required to own or lease their clean vehicle for a minimum of 30 months.
- Can I stack a Clean Vehicle Assistance Program grant with a grant or rebate from another clean vehicle incentive program?
The CVA Program clean vehicle grant can be combined, or “stacked,” with some other clean vehicle programs. The CVA Program can NOT be stacked with grants from Replace Your Ride, Clean Cars for All, Drive Clean in the San Joaquin, or the Driving Clean Assistance Program. The CVA Program can be stacked with the Clean Vehicle Rebate Program, but restrictions apply and participants are responsible for meeting the requirements of each program independently. Other programs may be able to stack with the CVA Program grant, such as the Federal Income Tax Credit. You can explore a full list of clean vehicle incentives available in California here. Stacking between programs depends on the availability of funds for each program. Funds are not guaranteed.
- How can I stack a CVA Program grant with a Clean Vehicle Rebate Program rebate?
Step 1: Complete the CVA Program application online.
Step 2: Receive your CVA Program Approval Packet.
Step 3: Bring your Approval Packet to a CVA Program Network Dealership to redeem your grant by purchasing or leasing a NEW qualifying vehicle (used vehicles are not eligible for the CVRP rebate). NOTE: the vehicle you purchase or lease must meet the vehicle requirements of BOTH the CVA Program and CVRP. Learn about the CVA Program vehicle eligibility guidelines here Click here to view eligible vehicles for the CVRP and learn about CVRP eligibility guidelines here.
Step 4: Apply for the CVRP rebate within 3 months of purchasing or leasing an eligible vehicle.
Step 5: Receive a CVRP approval email.
Step 6: Receive CVRP rebate check in the mail. This typically takes about 90 days from the approval email.