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Disadvantaged and Low-income


Communities Investments

Senate Bill 535 and Assembly Bill 1550 Implementation

Senate Bill (SB) 535 (De León, Chapter 830, Statutes of 2012) directs State and local agencies to make investments that benefit California's disadvantaged communities. It also directs the California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA) to identify disadvantaged communities for the purposes of these investments based on geographic, socio-economic, public health, and environmental hazard criteria.

Assembly Bill (AB) 1550 (Gomez, Chapter 369, Statutes of 2016), increased the percent of funds for projects located in disadvantaged communities from 10 to 25 percent and added a focus on investments in low-income communities and households.

The California Air Resources Board (CARB) and the administering agencies are in the process of transitioning to full implementation of AB 1550 as part of Fiscal Year 2017-18, and CARB is in the process of updating its Funding Guidelines for Agencies that Administer California Climate Investments to incorporate the legislative requirements of AB 1550.

California Climate Investments projects selected after the release of the 2017 Draft Funding Guidelines will use AB 1550 definitions for disadvantaged communities, low-income communities, and low-income households. Information on SB 535 implementation is available here for projects selected under prior Funding Guidelines.

Disadvantaged and Low-income Community Maps

The map below identifies disadvantaged communities and low-income communities for the purposes of California Climate Investments.

  1. Disadvantaged Communities - Census tracts in the top 25 percent of CalEnviroScreen 3.0 scores, plus those census tracts that score in the highest 5 percent of CalEnviroScreen's Pollution Burden without an overall CalEnviroScreen score.
  2. Low-income Communities - Census tracts that are either at or below 80 percent of the statewide median income, or at or below the threshold designated as low-income by the California Department of Housing and Community Development's (HCD) 2016 State Income Limits.
  3. Low-income Buffer Regions - Low-income communities as identified in (2) that are also within 1/2 mile of a disadvantaged community as identified in (1).

To see if a particular community is within a disadvantaged community or low-income community, either navigate to the desired location on the map, or search for the location in the search bar.
For full screen click: here.
Download data: Geodatabase or Kmz.
Methodology for identifying low income community census tracts under AB 1550 is available here.

Low-income Households

AB 1550 defines low-income households as those with: 1) a household income at or below 80 percent of the statewide median income, or 2) a household income at or below the threshold designated as low-income by HCD's list of 2016 State Income Limits. To determine the low-income threshold by county and household size, use the tool below. The list of income thresholds designated as low-income by HCD is available here.


Select Low-income Definition:

Select County:

Select Household Size:

Additional Resources



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