Assemblywoman Autumn R. Burke of District 62 celebrated her district, including Inglewood, Marina Del Rey, El Segundo and Hawthorne, being a part of the Replace Your Ride Program by hosting a crush your car event on Saturday, June 25.
The Replace Your Ride Program is an initiative put on by the South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD), where residents in disadvantaged neighborhoods throughout Los Angeles, Orange, San Bernardino and Riverside can apply to trade in their older, high-polluting vehicle and receive up to $9,500 and low-interest financing towards upgrading to a hybrid or electric vehicle. The program also has opportunities to trade in a high-polluting car for ride share vouchers and public transit passes.
“This is a way to get cleaner vehicles into the hands of the people who need it the most,” said Wayne Nastri, executive officer of the South Coast AQMD, the government agency that regulates air quality for the four-county region of Los Angeles, Orange, San Bernardino and Riverside. “Our goal is to reduce emissions that affect all of us and this program is a great opportunity to do that and creates a good incentive for people.”
The event was held at the Inglewood CarMax near the corner of La Cienega Blvd. and Manchester Blvd and lasted from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The attendants were a range of people from those who were applying for the first time, to people who were still going through the process and some who completed their process and received their cars that day. All attendants were also able to get a free smog check.
“I found out about this program through craigslist in January when I was trying to sell my car and I just thought why not apply,” said Jesse Macgregor, who was still going through processing for the program. “I had almost forgotten about it then I got an email saying I was eligible to get money for a new car and I had to call CarMax because it sounded too good to be true, and they said no, we’re having this event. I was just amazed.”
It was a family affair as Assemblywoman Burke was joined by her father, William A. Burke, who happens to be the chairman of the South Coast (AQMD) and founder of the L.A. City Marathon. Both were all smiles as they were able to hand over brand new keys to applicants and crush their older vehicles.
“We were on a panel together about a month ago on his birthday, but this is really our first event together,” said Assemblywoman Burke. “I don’t know which came first, his desire and drive to do things like this or my own drive to face these issues, but making sure disadvantaged communities aren’t forgotten is something that runs throughout my family’s history.”
Assemblywoman Burke has been active throughout her career in making the environment more healthy and sustainable. She is currently working on the Transformative Climate Community Bill, which will bring green jobs to communities that are high in air pollution. She also introduced a bill to create better access to reproductive health care earlier this year.
For more information about the Replace Your Ride Program, visit www.replaceyourride.com or call (855) 483 – 5107.