Starting November 7, 2022, qualified small business landscape professionals can purchase discounted zero-emission lawn mowers, blowers and other landscape equipment through a new category of funding offered through the California Air Resources Board’s Clean Off-Road Equipment Voucher Incentive Project (CORE). Administered by CALSTART, the CORE program’s new funding category has an allocation of more than $27 million of voucher funds for professional landscape services operated by small businesses or sole proprietors.
CALSTART administers the CORE program and its new funding category for CARB. CARB first announced this new funding opportunity in October.
“Professional landscapers often operate on very tight profit margins and can find it challenging to upgrade to new technology,” said Jacob Whitson, CALSTART’s lead project manager, “CORE’s new landscape voucher incentives will allow them to more easily adopt zero-emission professional equipment for their businesses, while in turn encouraging manufacturers to expand their offerings in this market.”
“Now widely available, this new cleaner, quieter equipment eliminates exposure to harmful fumes for the professionals operating these machines, and for anyone nearby,” said Sydney Vergis, chief of CARB’s Mobile Source Control Division. “The CORE project incentive funds will help get more zero-emission equipment into the hands of landscape professionals — while also helping California meet its clean air and climate goals.”
Equipment purchasers can request vouchers for the following types of landscape equipment starting today, November 7, 2022:
- String trimmers
- Pole saws
- Handheld leaf blowers
- Backpack leaf blowers
- Walk-behind mowers
- Ride-on/Stand-ride mowers
- Power management equipment
CORE’s website features both a list of approved zero-emission landscape service equipment manufacturers and a list of approved dealers throughout California and other states.
To be considered for voucher eligibility, small businesses must offer landscape services that help repair, install, or subcontract the development of landscape systems and facilities for public and private gardens and other areas that are designed to aesthetically, architecturally, horticulturally, or functionally improve the grounds within or surrounding a structure or a tract or plot of land. Additionally, the business must be independently owned and operated with a principal office located in California. Finally, the company must have 100 or fewer employees and average annual gross receipts of $15 million or less over the previous three years.
To promote broad application of CORE funding, $10 million of the total funding allocation will be set aside for 180 calendar days to ensure microbusinesses have access to participate. The remaining $17 million will be set aside for small businesses.
To submit a voucher request, vehicle purchasers must select eligible equipment from the equipment catalog and contact an approved dealer to submit a voucher request. The dealer will submit the voucher request to the Voucher Processing Center and the vehicle purchaser will receive the CORE incentive at the point of sale.
Another $125 million in heavy-duty voucher funds have been allocated for construction and agriculture equipment categories supported by CORE, including: terminal tractors, truck- and trailer-mounted transport refrigeration units, large forklifts and cargo-handling equipment, mobile power units, airport ground-support equipment, commercial harbor craft and railcar movers and switcher locomotives. The first round of CORE resulted in over 460 vouchers for vehicles and electric vehicle supply equipment totaling over $62 million, with terminal tractors being the most requested equipment type. The second round of CORE launched in July of 2022 and saw high demand. Currently, there is funding available. Visit https://californiacore.org/ticker/ to learn more.