Section 34 of the 2019 Transportation Bill (Act 59 of 2019) authorizes $2,000,000 to support two programs for income-qualified Vermonters: an incentive program for the purchase or lease of new plug-in electric vehicle (PEVs) and a high-fuel-efficiency used-vehicle incentive and emissions-system repair program.
New PEV Incentive Program
VTrans has worked with Vermont’s electric distribution utilities and with VEIC, which runs Drive Electric Vermont, to administer the incentive program for new PEVs. Section 34 requires VTrans to spend at least $1,100,000 on this program. Incentives became available on a first-come, first-served basis beginning December 16, 2019.
Incentives are for individuals with an annual household income less than about $96,000 (160% of the median Household Income) and apply to purchases or leases of new PEVs with a base price of $40,000 or less. More than twenty PEV models available in Vermont are eligible. The incentive amounts are $1,500 for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and $2,500 for all-electric vehicles. Larger incentives are available for individuals from households that qualify for Vermont’s Weatherization Program: $4,000 for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and $5,000 for all-electric vehicles. The statewide incentive may be used in combination with additional PEV incentives offered by the state’s electric utilities and federal tax credits for greater savings.
Under the statewide incentive program for new PEVs, eligible customers may receive the incentive directly from a participating car dealer in the form of a reduced purchase or lease price, or they may receive a direct cash reimbursement from the electric utility that serves their household. As of the December 16, 2019 program launch date, over 20 dealers are participating.
It is not necessary to be a utility customer to participate in the program. Incentives are limited to one per household and to Vermont residents. Incentives are not available retroactively to purchases or leases prior to the program launch.
For more information, including eligible models, application forms, and a current list of participating auto dealerships, please visit the Drive Electric website at: https://www.driveelectricvt.com/why-go-electric/purchase-incentives.
High Fuel-Efficiency Used-Vehicle Program
The high fuel-efficiency used-vehicle program authorized by the 2019 Transportation Bill provides point-of-sale financial assistance to income-eligible Vermonters to purchase used fuel-efficient vehicles. Capstone launched this program, now called MileageSmart, on March 10, 2020. MilegaeSmart can contribute up to 25% toward the purchase of a used high-miles-per-gallon (MPG) vehicle. Additional information about MileageSmart, including how to apply, can be found at MileageSmart.com.
Emissions Repair Program
Capstone is continuing to build the emissions-repair program authorized by the 2019 Transportation Bill. This program will provide point-of-repair financial assistance to income-eligible Vermonters to help repair vehicles that failed emissions testing. VTrans will update this webpage with more information about the emissions-repair program when it becomes available. If you would like to receive updated information about the emissions-repair program directly, please submit an email address below.