Central California pollution district funds grants for fuel efficient vehicles in Kern County

Public agencies granted up to $20,00 a car

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District has started a grant program to fund alternative fuel vehicles to public agencies in the central California area.

The grants award public agencies either $20,000 per car or $100,000 a year to buy alternative fuel vehicles.

Bakersfield College officials are one of many agencies who have applied for the grant and have been awarded money.

In May, BC was awarded close to $59,000 to buy up to six electric scooters for the college's police department.

Officials from the school said that the scooter were needed, because they wanted to save money on fuel and needed an easier way for police to maneuver around campus.

"The ability not to have to rely on fuel, in order, to get the vehicles around. They (the scooters) are electric and they can be recharged rather quickly," said Amber Chiang, a spokesperson for Bakersfield College.

BC is not the only school to take advantage of these grants, California State University Bakersfield was also awarded money to fund fuel efficient vehicles for their school police, facility management and athletic departments.

The grants comes from money that residents pay when registering vehicles at the DMV. 

According to Janelle Schneider, from the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District, residents are charged a $12 fee.

She said the fee is needed, especially when cars continue to be the leading cause of pollution in the central valley.

"The faster that we can change out engines and change out vehicles, from polluting vehicles to clean vehicles, the faster we'll be able to clean up our air," Schneider said.

The grants require the agencies to apply first and the applications are checked over before they are approved.

Grants are currently being award to public agencies on an ongoing basis



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