Release 09-79
September 8, 2009

    Mary Fricke
(916) 322-2990
Funding assistance program delivers first truck San Joaquin Valley small business owner

SACRAMENTO -- The California Air Resources Board marked the delivery of the first heavy-duty diesel truck purchased through the Voucher Incentive Program last week, part of a statewide effort to cut toxic diesel pollution.

The owner of Lodi Backhoe, a small business in Lodi, Calif., was given the keys to a new 2009 dump truck purchased with Voucher Incentive Program funding assistance, replacing an older, dirtier model. The San Joaquin Valley air district was the first in the state to issue a voucher.

"We are happy to see the program help small business owners purchase new, cleaner-running trucks that comply with our air quality regulations," said ARB Chairman Mary D. Nichols. "As a result, California residents will enjoy cleaner air, and suffer fewer cases of respiratory disease and asthma."

The Voucher Incentive Program, or VIP, is geared to small California-based fleets to help replace their older, polluting trucks with newer, cleaner models. More than $15 million is available through the program, open to any owner to fund heavy-duty truck replacements statewide. Between $30,000 and $35,000 is available per grant, depending on the age of the truck. Eligible trucks must operate 75 percent of the time in California with engines 1993 model year or older.

Participating truck dealerships can help business owners check eligibility and apply for a voucher. Grants are made on a first-come, first-served basis and qualifying applications are reviewed and approved within five business days.

For a list of participating dealership, go to:

VIP is part of the state's overall plan to cut toxic diesel emissions 85 percent by 2020. In December, ARB adopted statewide clean truck and bus regulations to bring California closer to meeting federally mandated air-quality standards and deadlines. The San Joaquin Valley is currently working toward meeting clean-air standards for ozone and particulate matter emissions.

For additional program information or to apply for a voucher, see: or call the Air Resources Board's diesel hotline at 1-866-6DIESEL.

The Air Resources Board is a department of the California Environmental Protection Agency. ARB's mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources through effective reduction of air pollutants while recognizing and considering effects on the economy. The ARB oversees all air pollution control efforts in California to attain and maintain health based air quality standards.

The energy challenge facing California is real. Every Californian needs to take immediate action to reduce energy consumption. For a list of simple ways you can reduce demand and cut your energy cost, see our web site at