California's Clean Vehicle Rebate Project (CVRP) received another boost in funds just days ago when the California Air Resource Board (CARB) backed the program with an additional $5 million earmarked for the 2010-11 fiscal year. Combined with the $4.1 million announced earlier this year, the CVRP now has $9.1 million at its disposal, though some of the funds have already been claimed by buyers snatching up qualifying vehicles.

Plugin Cars had the opportunity to speak with Mike Ferry, transportation programs manager at California's Center for Sustainable Energy, the San Diego-based group that manages the CVRP program. Ferry provided an overview of the CVRP program and also touched on aspects such as how much funding remains and how many Nissan Leafs will qualify for the rebate.

When Plugin Cars asked about the program's current level of funding, Ferry stated:

The first year of funding was fiscal year 2009 – 2010. The state operates from July 1 to June 30. The first fiscal year was $4.1 million in funding, which carries through until it's used up. And then on June 24, the Air Resources Board just approved additional funding for the next fiscal year of $5 million.

Ferry was asked about specific vehicles that are currently eligible for the rebate, to which he responded:

Right now, our vehicle eligibility list includes three different medium-duty all-electric commercial vehicles; it includes three different zero-emission motorcycles; and it includes four different manufacturers of low-speed neighborhood electric vehicles. In terms of full function light-duty vehicles, we have the Tesla Roadster and the Honda Clarity, which is fuel cell vehicle, still electric drive.

When prodded about the remaining funds for the CVRP program and the likelihood that the Leaf will qualify for the rebate, Ferry remarked:

Almost all of it. By the time the Nissan Leaf is launched in December, there will probably be about $8 million left. That's an estimate and could change... The day you buy a Leaf, you can go on our website and see if funds are available. You fill out the online application, and you'll know right away if your $5,000 is reserved for you. It's on a first-come-first-serve basis.
Up to 1,600 Leaf buyers will have the opportunity to snatch up the remaining $8 million in funds, but the opportunity to save an additional $5,000 won't last long.

[Source: Plugin Cars]