Electric Bicycle Rebate Program | 511 Contra Costa

Electric Bicycle Rebate Program

Buy a new e-bike and apply for a cash rebate of $150-$300!

✅ E-Bikes: Class 1, 2, or 3
E-Bike Conversion Kits: Professionally installed
Electric Mopeds: Max speed <30 MPH

Cash Back… What’s the Catch?

No catch! We want you to show and tell the world that e-bikes are the way to go. Talk to your neighbors and give test rides to your friends. Zoom up hills and show off how much fun you’re having. Go ahead and brag about how far you’ve ridden and how many places you can reach without your car.

Why Ride an E-Bike?

Piggy BankSave money by not driving
CyclingPersonal on-demand mobility during COVID, and beyond
Easy riding for adults of all ages and fitness levels
Sunglasses face outlineIt’s fun (especially on hills)
Car Tree Air FreshenerSweat-free biking lets you arrive fresh
LeafZero greenhouse gas emissions
RoadEnjoy the outdoors and avoid sitting in traffic

What is an E-Bike?

The “e” in e-bike should stand for enjoyable, but it actually stands for “electric assist”. An e-bike has fully operable pedals and an electric motor (750 watts or less) that provides the rider with a “pedal assist” option. E-bikes are battery powered and recharged by plugging into a standard power outlet. Different types of e-bikes are available:

Class 1 is a low-speed pedal-assisted bike equipped with a motor that provides assistance only when the rider is pedaling. The motor ceases to provide assistance when the bike reaches 20 MPH.

Class 2, or “low speed throttle-assisted electric bicycle,” is a bike equipped with a motor that may be used exclusively to propel the bike. It stops providing assistance when the bike reaches 20 MPH.

Class 3, or “speed pedal-assisted electric bicycle,” is a bike equipped with a motor that provides assistance only when the rider is pedaling, and which ceases to provide assistance when the bicycle reaches 28 MPH. Class 3 e-bikes are not allowed on EBRPD multi-use trails. Helmets are required when using these e-bikes and riders must be at least 16 years old.

Electric Bicycle Conversion Kits can turn a traditional bike into an e-bike by adding an electric motor to the front or back wheel. (Professional installation is required to qualify for a 511CC rebate.)

Mopeds have two or three wheels, an electric motor, and automatic transmission. A moped may also include pedals if it is not exclusively propelled by its motor. Its maximum speed is under 30 MPH on level ground. Mopeds must be registered (once) with the DMV, and drivers must carry an M1 or M2 motorcycle license. Helmets are required.

Real-Time Rebate Availability by Region & City

Rebates are reserved (by population) for residents of each city and unincorporated area of the county and will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis, one per household. A running total of available rebates by city will be updated daily.

Shopping for Your New E-Bike

E-bikes and electric mopeds range in price, and many models can be found in the $1,000-$1,500 range. 

Cargo bikes can make it easy to carry groceries and kids
Folding bikes can be easier to lock in several positions, which can provide more peace of mind
Commuter bikes, fat tire bikes, three-wheelers, cruisers… options exist to suit every rider

Who Can Apply?

Adults (18+) from each city and unincorporated community of Contra Costa County can apply for rebates for e-bikes purchased on or after October 1, 2020. Rebates will be available on a first-come, first-served basis, one per household, and will be distributed until funding is exhausted.

Low Income = Larger Rebate

50% of Program funds are reserved for county residents with total household incomes less than or equal to 400% of the Federal Poverty Level. 

Low-Income Qualification
400% of 2020 Federal Poverty Guidelines

Household SizeMax. Total Income
1$51,040
2$68,960
3$86,880
4$104,800
5$122,720
6$140,640
7$158,560
8$176,480

Riding Your E-Bike

E-Bikes on Trails

East Bay Regional Park District trail rules allow the use of Class 1 and 2 electric bikes on select paved regional trails. Class 3 e-bikes, mopeds, and electric scooters and skateboards are currently prohibited. All bikes must follow the 15 MPH speed limit, and riders must ring or call out before passing other trail users.

Regional trails in Contra Costa which allow e-bikes:

  • Alameda Creek Trail (paved only)
  • Big Break Trail
  • Contra Costa Canal Trail
  • Delta De Anza Trail
  • George Miller Trail
  • Iron Horse Trail
  • Lafayette Moraga Trail
  • Marsh Creek Trail

Helmets

Helmets can prevent severe injury and are highly recommended for use by all age groups. Children under the age of 18 are legally required to wear a helmet while riding bikes, scooters, or skateboards. All adults and children must wear a helmet while riding Class 3 e-bikes and mopeds.

Adults are not legally required to wear helmets while riding Class 1 or 2 e-bikes, but 511 Contra Costa strongly recommends the use of helmets for all riders.

Security

Parking an e-bike can be a lot easier than parking a car. In fact, some businesses and employers even allow riders to lock bikes inside the building.

If possible, use bike racks located in well-lit areas, and choose a high-quality lock to secure your bike. (Visit your local bike shop for recommendations.) In addition to locking the frame, some riders also choose to lock the removable components, such as the wheels and seat.

E-bike batteries may be easily removable and are expensive to replace. Most batteries come with a factory locking solution, such as a key lock, but taking the battery with you is another option. E-bikes can be stored in bike lockers and at Bike Stations found at some BART stations.

Additional Articles, Tips & Resources

E-Bike Rebate Program FAQ

Q: Can I get a rebate for the purchase of a traditional, non-electric bike?

A: No. We encourage traditional bicycling as a clean mobility option and incentivize this mode choice through various other programs including the Summer Bike Challenge, Bike to Work Day, and the Drive Less commuter incentive.

Q: Can I get a rebate for an e-scooter or e-skateboard?

A: Not at this time. While 511CC supports the use of all micromobility options, e-scooters and e-skateboards do not qualify for this rebate program. 

Q: Can I get a rebate for an electric motorcycle?

A: No. While 511CC supports the use of all types of electric vehicles over those with internal combustion engines, electric motorcycles are freeway capable and not considered micromobility, which is the focus of this program. E-motorcycles may be eligible for other rebate programs.

Q: To get a rebate, does my e-bike have to have pedals?

A: YES. Effective 10/21/20, e-bikes must have pedals to qualify for a rebate. (Foot pegs do not qualify as pedals.)

Q: Do used e-bikes qualify for rebates?

A: No. 511CC supports sustainability, including the principle of reduce, reuse, and recycle. For those who do not want to purchase a new e-bike, participants can receive a rebate by purchasing a new e-bike conversion kit and having it professionally installed on their traditional bike.

Q: Do I have to purchase my e-bike at a bike shop?

A: No, but it is recommended. Please note: CA sales tax must be paid to receive a 511CC rebate.

Q: Do I have to do anything else after I get my rebate?

A: Participants will receive an email with a link to complete a short online survey both two and twelve months after the rebate is issued. We will request an odometer photo, but no minimum mileage is required.

Q: Will rebates only be available to people who commute to a place of work?

A: No. Rebates will be available for any Contra Costa resident 18 years of age or older. 

Q: What if I buy an e-bike online and am not charged CA sales tax?

A: Proof of CA sales tax is required to receive a rebate. Please inquire with the seller to obtain proof of sales tax prior to submitting your application for a rebate.

Eligibility, Rules, Terms and Conditions

Apply for A Rebate

Rebate applications will only be accepted after you have purchased your e-bike (or qualifying vehicle or conversion kit). Be sure to keep your sales receipt showing the purchase date and that CA sales tax was paid. If you have already completed your e-bike purchase and have your receipt, click the appropriate button below to complete the rebate application in English or Spanish.

Questions?

If you have any questions about the program, please email us at rebate@511cc.org.

Funding 

This Program is available through a partnership with the Contra Costa Transportation Authority. Funding is provided from the local Measure J half-cent sales tax, which supports programs encouraging alternatives to the single occupant vehicle.

Pilot Program Policy Details