Frequently Asked Questions
This page provides answers to Frequently Asked Questions about the Clean Mobility Options Voucher Pilot Program (CMO). The Implementation Manual (IM) is the governing document for CMO, and provides detail on how the program works and the requirements for applicants and awardees. The IM is currently under development and will be posted on the website soon. Details on this page are subject to change and interested applicants should refer to the IM once published.
How much funding can I apply for?
Each new mobility project can receive up to $1,000,000. A project expanding an existing mobility project can receive up to $600,000. Additionally, up to $50,000 is available for community transportation needs assessment projects.
What is a voucher?
A voucher is a type of contract that serves as a “promise of payment”. Payments are issued on a reimbursement basis. Vouchers are awarded based on minimum eligibility criteria and are not competitive in CMO, which makes them different from other Low Carbon Transportation Investment grant opportunities.
What period of time does funding cover?
The Mobility Project voucher will cover up to three years of project costs after the voucher agreement is signed, including one year of planning and construction and two years of operations. Applicants have to commit to operating the project for two years after the voucher funding term ends to ensure that the project is sustainable – voucher funds will not cover costs during this period. The needs assessment project voucher will cover up to nine months of project costs.
What types of costs or activities does mobility project funding cover?
A lot! Funding can cover activities relating to project planning and design, outreach and marketing, capital costs, operations and maintenance, and implementation costs. Some examples of eligible costs include infrastructure, zero-emission vehicles, equipment, outreach and community engagement activities, staff time for operating services, and vehicle maintenance. See the Implementation Manual for more detail.
Am I eligible to receive funding?
Please see the Eligibility page.
When and how can I apply for a voucher?
We expect to begin accepting applications in late Spring 2020. Please continue to check the website and subscribe to our mailing list to receive updates. Applications may be accepted by email, postal mail, or in-person delivery in Pasadena.
How will projects be awarded funding?
Applications will be processed after the submission window closes, and are approved on a first-come, first-served basis. All who apply and meet the minimum eligibility criteria within the submission window will receive funding until funding is exhausted. For the first round of applications in 2020, $19 million is available for mobility projects and $1 million available for community transportation needs assessment projects.
May I apply for more than one voucher?
You can only apply as a lead applicant for one voucher application (this applies to both Mobility Projects and Community Transportation Needs Assessments). The one exception is if the project area you are applying for is entirely located in an unincorporated community (which means no city government represents the project area). In this case, you may apply as a lead for up to three projects as long as all of them are in unincorporated communities.
What is the difference between the transportation needs assessment voucher and the project voucher?
The community transportation needs assessment voucher is a smaller funding amount that is intended to help applicants get ready to submit an application for a mobility project voucher. One of the application requirements for the mobility project voucher is submission of a community transportation needs assessment. If an applicant has not completed a needs assessment in their community, they can apply for the needs assessment voucher to fund the assessment effort. Once the assessment is complete, those applicants can apply in a subsequent funding window for the project voucher.
May I apply for both a clean mobility project funding and community transportation needs assessment funding?
Yes, if the projects will be conducted in different project areas.
A community transportation needs assessment is a prerequisite for a mobility project. Applicants may apply for funding for both voucher types in the same program year if the projects will be conducted in different project areas. Awardees of grants for community transportation needs assessments may use the needs assessment to meet criteria for a mobility project application in an overlapping project area in subsequent program years.
We have already done a needs assessment. Can we just use that to complete the requirement of a community transportation needs assessment in our mobility project application?
In order for community transportation needs assessments to be eligible, they must include all of the elements as explained in the Implementation Manual. Organizations that have completed some but not all aspects of the community transportation needs assessment are encouraged to consider applying for funding to complete the assessment.
Is there a match requirement?
There is no match requirement. There does need to be some resource contribution from the applicant team, and there is flexibility about how this is done. See the Implementation Manual for more details on fulfilling this requirement.
Do motor vehicles need to be zero-emission vehicles?
Motor vehicles funded by the program must zero-emission vehicle (ZEVs), which include battery electric vehicles (BEV) and fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEV). Plug-in hybrid (PHEV) vehicles are eligible, but only for vehicle models with six seats capacity or above.
Where is the public list of mobility providers?
See the Mobility Providers page.
How do I find a mobility partner for my project?
Applicants can find professional mobility operators by consulting the Clean Mobility Provider Directory.
Applicants can request that the Program Administrator share their information with other interested parties in the same geography by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can existing projects apply for funding to expand services?
Yes, up to $600,000.
What is the difference between new and existing service?
To determine whether your proposed project will provide a new or existing service, first determine the boundaries of your project area. A new service is a mobility service that you are proposing to introduce into the proposed project area. In other words, it is not currently operating in any location of the proposed project area. An existing service is a mobility service (for example, a vanpool program) that is currently operating in some locations of or the entire proposed project area.
What is an example of an existing project that could receive up to $600,000?
One example is replacing the existing fleet of an on-demand, non-emergency medical transportation program that serves residents in a disadvantaged community, with zero-emission vehicles.
Can infrastructure be located outside of the project area?
Most of the mobility services and infrastructure funded by a voucher must be located inside the project area to deliver intended benefits to residents. At least 80 percent of the infrastructure must be within the project area. Twenty percent can be located outside of the project area. The percentages can be determined in several ways (e.g. 20 percent of total capital costs, 20 percent of the area in square miles, 20 percent of vehicles and/or chargers, 20 percent of route length, etc.).
May we combine the Clean Mobility Options Voucher Pilot voucher money with other funding sources?
Yes, and that is encouraged! However, other funds from the Low-Carbon Transportation Investments program cannot count towards an applicant’s required “resource contribution.” Additionally, applicants may not stack funding that leads to payment for an amount greater than the value of an item. For example, an applicant may not stack CMO funding with funds from the Clean Vehicle Rebate Project, because CMO funding can already reimburse the full value of a passenger vehicle.
Is the Clean Mobility Options Voucher Pilot the same as the Sustainable Transportation Equity Project (STEP)?
No, they are different programs, but both are funded by California Climate Investments and are in the Low Carbon Transportation Investments suite of projects. The CMO Voucher Pilot is a non-competitive program that provides funding through an administrator (CALSTART) for small-scale clean mobility projects and community transportation needs assessments. STEP is a competitive program in which applicants will receive funding directly through CARB for larger scale projects that may include multiple clean transportation options and supporting projects. STEP is currently in the program design stage, and a call for projects will open in Spring 2020. You can access materials about STEP at this website, or contact STEP staff at email@example.com for more information