Grant awards announced for new $19.5 million pilot funding equitable, clean transportation options in disadvantaged and low-income communities

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November 19, 2020

Release #20-36


Grant awards announced for new $19.5 million pilot funding equitable, clean transportation options in disadvantaged and low-income communities

Pioneering program helps communities hit hardest by pollution overcome barriers to sustainable transportation

en Español

SACRAMENTO – The California Air Resources Board has awarded 11 grants totaling $19.5 million to community-based organizations and local governments across California that will help disadvantaged and low-income communities address transportation needs with innovative clean, sustainable transportation solutions.

Available through a new pilot project called the Sustainable Transportation Equity Project, or STEP, the funding supports both planning and implementation of clean transportation projects. Each project awarded funding includes partnerships between a lead applicant, co-applicants (e.g. public, private or nonprofit organizations) and community partners.

“The goal of this pioneering project is to boost transportation equity by designing the program whereby communities make decisions about their own transportation needs, with the objective of helping residents get where they need to go — be it the doctor’s office, grocery store or daycare — without using a personal vehicle,” CARB Executive Officer Richard W. Corey said.

STEP will help support Governor Newsom’s Executive Order phasing out gasoline-powered cars and requiring 100 percent sales of zero-emission cars in 2035. This will drastically reduce demand for fossil fuels, cut vehicle emissions, protect public health, and propel California toward carbon neutrality in the mid-century.

STEP aims to increase transportation equity in disadvantaged and low-income communities by funding clean transportation solutions that are determined by community residents and that work best for each individual community. STEP offered two types of awards: planning and capacity building grants, and grants supporting project implementation. Projects funded include a new electric carsharing and bikesharing service, public transit and shared mobility subsidies, urban forestry, new bike paths, community transportation needs assessments, and active transportation education and outreach events. All projects incorporate significant community engagement during all phases of project planning, development, and implementation.

CARB received 34 proposals, requesting more than five and a half times the available funding. Awardees include:

Planning and Capacity Building Grant Awardees

  • City of Oakland Department of Transportation – $184,753.69
  • Circle of Life Development Foundation, dba MLKCommUNITY Initiative of southeast Bakersfield – $200,000
  • Omnitrans, a public  transportation agency in San Bernardino County – $230,500
  • Isla Vista Community Services District – $182,158
  • City Heights Community Development Corporation – $199,248.08
  • Anaheim Transportation Network – $200,000
  • Solano Transportation Authority – $299,997.59
  • City of South El Monte – $205,108.50

Implementation Grant Awardees

  • San Joaquin Council of Governments – $7,480,385.53
  • City of Commerce – $3,240,078.08
  • Los Angeles Department of Transportation – $7,077,770.53

STEP is part of California Climate Investments, a statewide initiative that has put 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.

STEP is part of a larger approach to promote low-carbon transportation solutions in California. Other programs include Clean Mobility Options, a pilot providing first come, first served funding for smaller-scale shared mobility projects and the Clean Vehicle Assistance Program, which provides grants and affordable financing to help people buy clean cars.

More Information

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Melanie Turner
Office of Communications
(916) 322-2990