Central California program helps Valley residents pay for electric vehicle

The EV Equity Program provides more than $13,000 to eligible clients.
FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- A Central California group wants to put more Valley residents into electric vehicles.

The Clean Vehicle Empowerment Collaborative started the EV Equity Program and hosted a test drive event in east central Fresno on Saturday morning.

The program provides more than $13,000 to eligible clients in the San Joaquin Valley who are looking to make the switch to electric.

"Putting that money down as a down payment can make the difference between whether somebody can really afford a car or not," said Yanni Gonzales, with the program.

People were lined up before the event started at 10 a.m., ready to test drive either a Tesla, Mazda or Kia.

Katherine Jackson was eager to get behind the wheel of an electric vehicle on display at the EV Test Drive Event.

She's one of several clients part of the EV Equity Program, looking for assistance when it comes to paying for an electric vehicle.

"I really prefer to have an all-electric car because I think that will help the environment a lot more than just a regular hybrid," said Jackson.

The program's funding comes from the state, plus other local programs.

"We do this because we want to make sure that the air we breathe in our Valley is safe and healthy for all of our Valley families," said Gonzales.

Once a person is qualified for the program, the individual also goes through educational workshops about electric vehicles, something Jackson is thankful for.

"They just walked me through the whole thing," she said. "It was awesome."

According to Gonzales, the program hopes to put 75 Valley residents in electric vehicles by the end of the year.

For more information on the EV Equity Program, and to see if you're eligible, visit the website.

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