Monday, May 7, 2018

Wolf Administration To Announce Plans For $118M Volkswagen Clean Air & Vehicle Settlement Funding May 10

On May 10 the Wolf Administration will announce creation of new grant and rebate programs funded from Pennsylvania’s $118 million share of the penalty paid by Volkswagen Group of America to settle allegations of cheating federal vehicle emissions tests.
Making the announcement will be Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Patrick McDonnell and Department of Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine will join Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald, business representatives, and clean energy advocates.
Through a settlement between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Department of Justice, and Volkswagen, roughly $118 million has been set aside for projects in Pennsylvania that reduce vehicle emissions which contribute to the creation of smog, ground level ozone, and acid rain.
In 2017, DEP solicited feedback from the public regarding the allocation of the uses of the funds as proscribed by the settlement.
At budget hearings this year, DEP Secretary McDonnell said, “This presents a huge opportunity for partnerships with local governments, small businesses, fleet owners, and residents of Pennsylvania to have a meaningful impact on their local air quality while driving a market transformation.”
The use of funds in this federal settlement are strictly guided by federal trust agreement.
The draft Plan for using the funds and other background on the issue are available on DEP’s Environmental Mitigation Trust Agreements webpage.
Last year, the Senate and House transferred $30.4 million from a separate settlement with Volkswagen for the same violations by Attorney General Shapiro to the General Fund to help balance the budget.
Senate Bill 722 (Bartolotta-R-Washington) was also introduced last year to provide for the distribution of the $118 million settlement funds DEP will be announcing.
The announcement will be held at the American Natural Harmar Energy Centre, 2 Rich Hill Road, Cheswick, Allegheny County starting at 2:00 p.m.  Examples of eligible alternative fuel vehicles and equipment will be on site for the event.
Questions about the event should be directed to Lauren Fraley, DEP Southwest Regional Office, 412-442-4203 or by sending email to:
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