School districts, municipalities, tribal governments and private transportation contractors can apply through Nov. 1 for rebate funds to pay for replacing older diesel school buses or installing eligible emissions control devices.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency opened its 2016 school bus rebate application last Thursday. Approximately $7 million is available in rebates to public school bus fleet owners for the replacement or retrofit of older school buses. The application deadline is Nov. 1 at 4 p.m. ET.
"Our kids spend a lot of time on the school bus, and buses spend a lot of time in our neighborhoods and school yards. They are a national symbol of safety,” said Janet McCabe, acting assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation. "Significantly improving school bus fleets across the country with retrofits, replacements, and idle reduction practices is imperative in meeting the Agency’s goal of reducing children’s exposure to air toxics.”
Class 3 through 8 school buses with a 10,001-pound plus Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) that transport 10 or more pre-primary, primary, or secondary school students to school or homes and that have been driven 10,000 or more miles in the past year are eligible. The school buses must also be used at least three days a week during the school year.
Buses eligible for replacement must be powered by 2006 or older model year engines and must be replaced with buses powered by a 2016 or newer model year engine. These buses qualify for $15,000 to $25,000 per bus depending on the GVWR of the replacement buses. To be eligible for retrofits, school buses must be powered by 1994 through 2006 model-year engines and must be retrofitted with an EPA-verified Diesel Oxidation Catalyst (DOC) + Closed Crankcase Ventilation (CCV) system and have the option of adding a verified Fuel Operated Heater (FOH).
DOC+CCV can qualify for up to $4,000 and DOC+CCV+FOH can qualify for up to $6,000 to cover parts and installation.