HB 285- Relating to Natural Gas Rebate Program
On Tuesday, February 9th, HB 285, relating to Natural Gas Rebate Program, by Rep. Lake Ray (R-Jacksonville) passed unanimously through the House Agriculture & Natural Resources Appropriations Subcommittee by a vote of 13 yeas to 0 nays. AIF’s Senior Vice President of State and Federal Affairs, Brewster Bevis, stood in support of this bill.
In 2013, the Legislature created the Natural Gas Fuel Fleet Vehicle Rebate Program (program) within the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (DACS) to “help reduce transportation costs in this state and encourage freight mobility investments that contribute to the economic growth of the state.” Beginning with Fiscal Year 2013-2014 and continuing through Fiscal Year 2017-2018 (five years), DACS is required to award rebates, to those eligible, for the costs of converting a diesel- or gasoline-powered motor vehicle to a natural gas fuel-powered motor vehicle on or after July 1, 2013. An applicant is eligible to receive a maximum rebate of $25,000 per vehicle up to a total of $250,000 per applicant per fiscal year, on a first-come, first-served basis.
This bill would allow DACS to use any unencumbered funds remaining after June 30th of each fiscal year to award additional rebates for those that have not received a rebate under the program.
HB 285 will now go to the House Regulatory Affairs Committee.
AIF supports the natural gas fuel fleet vehicle rebate program, specifically the authorization of DACS to award additional rebates to applicants from unencumbered funds after each fiscal year.