The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)'s Clean School Bus Rebate Program Portal is officially open. Eligible school districts and school bus contractors can apply for rebates for zero-emission and low-emission bus purchases. The program will provide $500 million in rebates for eligible recipients. More funding can be made available if needed. Half of the total rebates given will go to zero-emission buses only; the other half will be for a mix of zero-emission buses and low-emission school buses.
The funding was made available through the The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law of 2021.
Who's eligible for the rebates:
- State and local governmental entities that provide bus service
-Public school districts, including charter schools, with an NCES District ID are eligible to apply directly for funding.
-Most State governmental entities would not be eligible to apply, but some, like South Carolina, own bus fleets and would be eligible.
- Eligible contractors - Eligible contractors are for-profit, not-for-profit, or nonprofit entities that have the capacity to (1) sell clean or ZE school buses or related charging or fueling infrastructure to school bus owners or (2) arrange financing for such a sale.
-School bus dealers and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) that meet these criteria are eligible contractors.
- Nonprofit school transportation associations
- Indian tribes, tribal organizations, or tribally controlled schools responsible for the purchase of school buses or providing school bus service for a Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) funded school
Private school bus fleets cannot apply directly for funding. However, eligible applicants listed above can enter into a contractual arrangement with a private fleet that owns and operates buses to replace buses that serve a public school district.
Here are some dates you need to know:
- The online portal will be open for application submissions through Aug. 19, 2022.
- The EPA will review applications and begin is selection process in September 2022.
- The EPA will notify applicants of their selection status and post lists of appliants and selectees online in October 2022. Selectees can then proceed with purchasing new buses and eligible infrastructure.
- Selectees must submit payment request forms with purchase orders demonstrating that new buses and eligible infrastructure have been ordered. This must be completed between October 2022-April 2023.
- October 2024 is the project period deadline for selectees to receive new buses, install eligible infrastructure, replace old buses, and submit close out forms.
You can find more information on eligibility and on the selection process by clicking the link below.
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