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Santa Monica to Offer Its Own E-Bike Rebates

Beginning spring 2024, the city will offer a limited number of vouchers up to $2,000 to Income-qualified residents for e-bikes and accessories.

10:43 AM PDT on September 15, 2023

Santa Monica’s Broadway Safety Project. Photo by Joe Linton/Streetsblog

Santa Monica joins the small club of cities that will offer an e-bike rebate program after the city announced its program should come online in the spring of 2024. Income-qualified residents will be able to receive up to $2,000 once the program is up and running. 

“I’m excited for the e-bike voucher program to take another step forward,” City Manager David White said in a statement. “The benefits of this program are numerous, including helping the City move toward its emission reduction goals, promoting active transportation, creating partnerships with local businesses, and making access to sustainable transportation more equitable.”  

The city is expecting $157,000 in funding from the State Department of Energy’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program to provide approximately 75 vouchers to income-qualifying households. If the grant application is successful, the City anticipates funding in early 2024 and, after a community outreach period, the vouchers would be distributed via lottery in spring 2024. 

Staff proposed the following criteria for the anticipated program, which will need approval by the City Council: 

  • Income Thresholds: Residents who are already enrolled in one or more low-income assistance programs, such as Family Electric Rate Assistance (FERA), California Alternate Rates for Energy (CARE), or the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), OR meet the Office of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) definition of low-income at 80 percent of Area Median Income would be eligible to apply. ​ 
  • Subsidy Amount: ​ Each voucher would provide up to $2,000 to cover the cost of the bike and eligible accessories, such as a helmet, lights, and/or lock. 
  • Number of Vouchers:  ​Approximately 75 vouchers would be issued, with more available as funding allows. 

Similar e-bike voucher programs are currently in place in the cities of Pasadena, San Diego, and Denver. There is also a state incentive program on the way, although it has been mired in red tape for years

“I was really excited to give input and collaborate with City staff on the pilot that helps further affirm Santa Monica‘s leadership and commitment to climate resilience, encouraging healthier active transportation with locally funded options like this e-bike incentive,” writes Cynthia Rose with Santa Monica Spoke.

“By bolstering these choices we support the freedom to move around Santa Monica without driving a car and help reduce GHG emissions, helping to move us toward our climate goals in an efficient manner.”

Learn more about the City’s Climate Action and Adaptation Plan, including the Electrify Santa Monica rebate program, which offers rebates on electric appliances, e-bikes, electric vehicle chargers, and more to all residents.

Note: This post originally appeared on Santa Monica Next.

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