Funding Rundown: CORE (June 15, 2023 Deadline for Manufacturers)

Electrification of a fleet represents a significant investment of time and money for many companies and can be burdensome for small companies especially. Fortunately in California, there are various funding opportunities for fleets, including the Clean Off-Road Equipment Voucher Incentive Project (CORE) which prioritizes small businesses. 

What is CORE funding? 

CORE is a voucher incentive project intended to encourage California off-road equipment users to purchase or lease currently commercialized zero-emission off-road equipment.

What are CORE’s goals? 

CORE improves California’s air, reduces emissions, and helps create green jobs. CORE aims to accomplish the California Governor’s Executive Order N-79-20 which calls for 100% of off-road vehicles and equipment operations to be zero-emission by 2035 where feasible. Because CORE is intended to encourage California off-road fleets to expand their zero-emission operations, it will benefit the citizens of California by providing both immediate air pollution and greenhouse gas emission reductions and long-term air quality and climate change benefits.

How much funding is available through CORE? 

CORE has dedicated $273 million to promoting zero-emission off-road equipment. 

Do I need to buy equipment to be eligible for CORE? 

CORE applies to off-road equipment that is both purchased and leased. 

How does CORE funding work? 

CORE is an efficient voucher incentive initiative that assists in reducing the expenses associated with zero-emission technology through a discount applied at the point of purchase. 

No scrappage condition is imposed. Scrapping an automobile means to dispose and dismantle it for recycling purposes. This process involves separating and recycling various materials like metal, plastics, and fluids to recover valuable resources and minimize waste.

Extra funding is provided for charging and fueling infrastructure, as well as for equipment utilized in underprivileged communities.

What types of equipment are eligible for CORE funding? 

CORE funding is specifically for off-road equipment. For on-road vehicle funding including trucks and buses, check out HVIP, the Hybrid and Zero-Emission Truck and Bus Voucher Incentive Project. CORE vouchers are intended for off-road equipment that are zero-emission and commercial-ready. Commercial-ready models have undergone thorough testing to guarantee reliability and effectiveness in intended applications and are not in the prototype or demonstration phase. 

In addition, CORE vouchers are commonly used in freight applications and other heavy-duty off-road sectors such as agriculture, construction and commercial harbor craft. Lastly, CORE targets products that have not yet achieved a significant market foothold

CORE eligible equipment includes: 

  • Professional landscape service equipment such as push mowers and pole hedge trimmers
  • Agriculture such as electric tractors 
  • Cargo handling equipment such as reach stackers, straddle carriers, side picks, and top picks
  • Construction equipment (excavators, dozers, skid-steers, loaders, back hoes, mining equipment and other construction equipment types)
  • Forklifts (8,001 pounds or greater lift capacity)
  • Mobile and ground power units
  • Railcar movers and switchers
  • Terminal tractors
  • Transport Refrigeration Units (TRUs) 
  • Airport cargo loaders
  • Harbor craft 

How much funding can I get from a CORE voucher? 

The maximum limit for CORE vouchers, which includes additional funding for small businesses, equipment deployment in disadvantaged or low-income communities, and infrastructure enhancement, is set at $500,000. This means that no individual voucher can surpass $500,000 or exceed the total equipment cost (excluding taxes and fees).

How does CORE prioritize funding? 

CORE prioritizes funding to ensure that small businesses and purchasers deploying zero-emission off-road equipment in disadvantaged or low-income communities have access to CORE funds.  A small business is defined as a business with 100 or fewer employees and an average annual gross receipts of fifteen million dollars or less over the previous three years. If funds are available after small business and/or disadvantaged/low-income communities vouchers have been funded, other voucher requests will be funded based on the time submitted (first-come, first-serve). 

Can I stack CORE funding with other sources of funding?

Combining CORE funding with other public funding programs is permissible according to CORE guidelines but may not be permitted by other programs. Keep in mind that CORE does not allow the total amount of incentive funding from all sources to exceed the total cost of the equipment excluding taxes and fees. (CORE funding may not be used to pay for any taxes or fees associated with the acquisition of the equipment piece.) 

When can I apply for funding through CORE? 

The CORE Project is accepting applications for heavy-duty manufacturers for freight/off road equipment now through June 15, 2023 by 5 PM Pacific Standard Time. Any manufacturer of equipment that meets California CORE technology eligibility requirements can become a CORE-eligible manufacturer. Learn more about eligibility or email Todd Sterling from CARB at

There is also about $10 million available for professional landscaping voucher funds for lawn and garden equipment. CORE is currently open for manufacturers and fleets to apply for eligibility and for vouchers until the funds are exhausted. 

Heavy-duty voucher funds are currently closed. 

Overall, CORE aims to accelerate the adoption of zero-emission off-road equipment, aligning with California’s goals of improving air quality, reducing emissions, and creating green jobs.

Sign up for CORE funding email updates here. 


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