Funding: Total: $6,815,000. Maximum awards: $250K-$500K, depending on grant size.

Dates: Pre-Application Workshop: October 11, 2021 at 10AM. Deadline for Written Questions: October 15, 2021. Deadline to Submit Full Applications: December 2, 2021.


The California Energy Commission’s (CEC’s) Clean Transportation Program (formerly known as the Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program) and the California Air Resources Board (CARB) announce the availability of up to $6,815,000 in grant funds for projects that will provide workforce training and development that support zero-emission vehicles (ZEV), ZEV infrastructure, and ZEV-related commercial technologies in California.

Project Topic Areas:

Proposed projects should demonstrate community and employer engagement and a path toward ZEV jobs in the State. The IDEAL ZEV Workforce Pilot focuses investments on and provides benefits to priority communities. Key goals of this investment include: Supporting training in ZEV industries; Aligning workforce projects in ZEV deployment areas for growth and scale; Making training specifically available to priority communities; Preparing dislocated, unemployed, and new workforce entrants for ZEV careers; and Accrue environmental and socioeconomic benefits to California.

The following projects are eligible:

  • Piloting new and/or expanding existing workforce training and development programs that provide career pathways in ZEV industries and occupations.
  • Participant/attendee training.
  • Instructor training.
  • Developing new ZEV curriculum and/or integrating new ZEV curriculum into existing curriculum, instructional materials, and training activities.
  • Leveraging local/regional workforce entities and programs, workforce systems, education partners, and learning centers to increase job recruitment, job retention, and job placement in the ZEV sector.
  • Providing supportive services such as transportation costs and childcare costs for trainees/participants from priority communities to increase access to training opportunities. Supportive services are capped at a maximum of 5% of the CEC award amount. There is no cap for supportive services provided as a match share expense. For a definition of priority communities, please Section V.A, Definition of Key Words.
  • Training, certification, and/or degree programs in existing ZEV automotive and truck programs.
  • Translation services of training resources.

Administrative costs are capped at 10 percent (10%). Proposed projects that have lower administrative costs will be scored higher than projects that have higher administrative costs.


A total of $6,815,000 is available for awards under this solicitation. The solicitation has two (2) categories for funding: Small Grants: the minimum award amount is $75,000 and the maximum award amount is $250,000. Large Grants: the minimum award amount is $250,001 and the maximum award amount is $500,000. There is a 5 percent (5%) match share requirement for this solicitation. There is no (0%) match share requirement for California Native American Tribes and California Tribal Organizations. Applications must include a minimum zero (0) percent cash match share.

The CEC will recommend awards to the five highest ranked projects (according to final overall application score), and which achieve at least the minimum passing score within each funding category: five projects under Small Grants and five projects under Large Grants. With any remaining funding, the CEC will recommend awards to the next overall highest-ranked projects achieving at least the minimum passing score regardless of funding categories, until available funding for this solicitation has been exhausted. If an insufficient number of passing projects are received in one of the funding categories, the CEC reserves the right to transfer funding between the funding categories in order to fund additional passing projects received under this solicitation.

Project Requirements:

Applicants are only eligible to submit one application under this solicitation. All projects: Must be in California. Must focus on plug-in electric and/or hydrogen fuel types only. Must provide a minimum of six (6) months of qualitative and quantitative data collection and analysis. Must provide training for at least one of these commercially available ZEV technology products: On- and/or off-road vehicles and equipment; Light-, medium-, and/or heavy-duty vehicles; Electric vehicle chargers and their components, systems, and/or parts; Hydrogen fueling stations and their components, systems, and/or parts.

Eligible Applicants:

This solicitation is open to all California public entities, private entities, community-based organizations (CBO), non-profits (NP), non-governmental organizations (NGOs), California Community Colleges, California State Universities, the University of California, California Native American Tribes, and California Tribal Organizations. Ineligible applicants include California state agencies, boards, and commissions. The Applicant does not need to have its company headquarters in California, but it must have at least one existing physical office within the State of California.