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Gov. Brown Signs Plan to Spend $1.5B in Climate Money

SACRAMENTO (AP) — Gov. Jerry Brown has signed two bills that outline a plan to spend $1.5 billion on environmental initiatives using money from the state’s recently renewed cap and trade program.

The bills were signed on Saturday, hours after lawmakers approved the plan to spend most of the money on incentives and rebates to promote a cleaner vehicle fleet.

California has set an ambitious goal to have 1.5 million zero-emission vehicles on the road by 2025. Lawmakers hope the rebates will help close the price gap between traditional and electric vehicles.

Funding will come from a program that puts a limit on annual carbon emissions and auctions off permits to pollute.

The bills include a provision aimed at helping a union looking to organize workers who assemble Tesla electric cars in Fremont.