The dream of stimulus checks is still alive in California—if you’re a car owner

March 24, 2022, 12:10 AM UTC

California car owners could get $400 stimulus checks to help offset rising gasoline prices under a proposal by California Gov. Gavin Newsom.

The governor announced an $11 billion relief program as the Golden State’s gas prices soar above $6 per gallon due partly to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which has disrupted the global oil market. 

As part of the tax relief program, $9 billion would be distributed to California residents in the form of tax refunds of $400 for each vehicle they own, with a limit of two.    

Another $2 billion would go to broader relief, including a $750 million grant for public transit agencies to provide free transit for three months. Up to $600 million would be used to pause a part of the sales tax of diesel for one year and another $523 million to halt an increase in gas tax rates due to inflation.

The state legislature must approve the proposal before any payments are made to Californians. If approved, the state’s residents could receive a stimulus checks starting in July.

“We’re taking immediate action to get money directly into the pockets of Californians who are facing higher gas prices as a direct result of Putin’s invasion of Ukraine,” Gov. Newsom said in a statement. “But this package is also focused on protecting people from volatile gas prices, and advancing clean transportation—providing three months of free public transportation, fast-tracking electric vehicle incentives and charging stations, and new funding for local biking and walking projects.”

Never miss a story: Follow your favorite topics and authors to get a personalized email with the journalism that matters most to you.