Final Beneficiary Plan Overview
The beneficiary mitigation plan is structured in three phases, so DEQ can seek additional input and make changes as needed along the way. This plan addresses Phase 1 (2018 - 2020) only. DEQ plans to invest 33% of the overall funds ($30.68 million) during this period. Based on the distribution of violating vehicles registered across the state, DEQ plans to allocate the funds between urban/suburban counties (68%) and rural counties (32%). DEQ will submit requests to the Trustee of the Environmental Mitigation Trust to use funds for eligible projects throughout the state that will reduce or eliminate emissions of NOx focusing on the most cost-effective projects, the quantity of NOx emission reductions and other factors. Project funding will be awarded through a competitive process in accordance with North Carolina General Statutes.
DEQ will manage the VW settlement funds through five programs:
* School Bus Replacement Program 40% or $12.3 million
* Transit Bus Replacement Program 20% or $6.1 million
* Clean Heavy Duty On-Road Equipment Program 10% or $3 million
* Clean Heavy Duty Off Road Equipment Program 10% or $3 million
* EV Light Duty Infrastructure 15% or $4.6 million
* Administrative Costs 5% or $1.5 million
Plan Revision Proposal - Comment Deadline Sept. 7, 2021
The N.C. DEQ is requesting comments on the Draft Phase 2 Mitigation Plan which describes how the state plans to invest $67 million in Volkswagen Settlement funds. The Draft Phase 2 Mitigation plan focuses on efforts to reduce pollution impacts while incentivizing zero emission vehicles and increasing outreach to under-resourced communities. In Phase 1 of the program, NC awarded nearly $27 million to replace 111 school buses and 16 transit buses and to install 33 zero emission vehicle (ZEV) fast charging stations and 78 Level 2 charging stations across the state.
The Division of Air Quality will hold a series public information sessions to explain the draft plan. Members of the public and entities interested in receiving funds for eligible projects are encouraged to register and attend:
- 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. Wednesday, July 14: Western NC Region
- 2 p.m. - 4 p.m. Wednesday, July 14: Centralina/Triad Region
- 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. Wednesday, July 21: Triangle Region
- 2 p.m. - 4 p.m. Wednesday, July 21: Coastal NC Region
The Division of Air Quality will also hold a series of in-person public information sessions for counties eligible in the Historically Under-Resourced Counties Outreach Program. Additional meeting dates, locations and times will be posted on the DEQ Volkswagen Program webpage.
Comments may be submitted online via Microsoft Forms at https://bit.ly/3jMMu3i or emailed to daq_NCVWGrants@ncdenr.gov. Voicemail comments will also be accepted at 919-707-8429. All comments will be accepted until September 7, 2021 at 5 p.m.
Additional information regarding Phase 2 can be found on https://deq.nc.gov/vw-settlement.
SB99 (2018) requires legislative appropriations before VW Settlement Funds can be used to fund projects. Status: Conference Committee Report agreed to by both Houses as of 6/1/18.
SB257 (2017) requires coordination by agencies and submission of Environmental Mitigation Plan to legislature before any funds can be expended; both houses agree to Conference Report as of 6/22/17; Vetoed 6/27/17; veto overridden by legislature 6/28/17.