Greater Manchester’s Clean Air Zone (CAZ) Financial Support Scheme will launch next week.
The first round of funding will support registered HGV drivers from the smallest businesses, sole traders and the voluntary sector.
The Financial Support will be available as a lump sum grant, contribution towards vehicle financing, or a combination of the two.
It is hoped that launching the funding in December will give drivers the maximum amount of time to apply, before the launch of the Clean Air Zone in May.
Contracts have been signed with Hampshire Trust Bank and Haydock Finance, RCI Financial Services and Shire Leasing appointing them as financial providers to the Financial Support Scheme. Work is also ongoing to create a network of accredited dealerships that can supply replacement vehicles that meet the emission standards of the Clean Air Zone.
Vehicle owners can answer a series of simple questions at cleanairgm.com/prepare to find out whether they will be eligible for funding support.
Funding for Greater Manchester-licensed private hire vehicles (PHVs) and hackney carriages, coaches, minibuses and vans (LGVs) will also launch at the end of January 2022.
These vehicle owners will receive letters from early 2022 to notify them of exemptions and the funding support that is available.
Greater Manchester Lead for Clean Air, Cllr Andrew Western, said: ‘We want to support as many affected vehicle owners as possible to move to cleaner vehicles so they don’t have to pay a daily charge, and I’d encourage people to use the online checker to see if they are affected and find out more about their options.
‘While the Zone is due to launch on 30 May 2022, there will be some temporary local exemptions in place. These will give van, minibus and Greater Manchester-licensed taxi and private hire vehicle owners, and coach operators with vehicles not used on registered bus services, more time to upgrade their vehicle without facing a charge to drive in the Zone until 1 June 2023.’
Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, added: ‘Since national government mandated Greater Manchester to introduce a Clean Air Zone, we have been working to secure as much financial assistance as possible to affected vehicle owners. I urge people to use the online checker tool to find out if they are impacted.
‘I want to encourage HGV owners to take advantage of what’s available and to apply as early as possible. The ultimate aim here is that all affected owners avoid a daily charge and make a move to vehicles that are greener, cleaner and much cheaper to run.’