Home owners in the San Lorenzo Valley that have wood burning stoves may be eligible for some cash. Starting Thursday the Monterey Bay Air Resources District offered an exchange program to try and get the valley air a little healthier.
"At times the air quality has gotten into the unhealthy range in the San Lorenzo Valley," said air pollution officer, Richard Stedman
The SLV is known for it's beautiful greenery but often times, just above the trees sits a smokey haze, that's harmful to breathe.
"Wood smoke is a problem during the winter time area. Number one a lot of folks are using wood to heat their homes the populations increasing becoming more dense and we have a lot of inversions during the winter time in San Lorenzo Valley," said Stedman.
The Monterey Bay Air Resources District offered SLV homeowners up to $2,500 to replace their wood burning stove for propane. Applications are available at mbard.org. If you're interested just click on the wood stove program.
"I think the rebate is an awesome way to get people who don't have propane or gas to make the switch," said Ben Lomond resider, Kristen Dowling.
Homeowners who've been income qualified by Central Coast Energy Service will be eligible for the highest incentives, but they'll need to act quick. The MBARD only has $75,000 to give out and once the moneys dispersed that's it.
"We hope to actually get additional moneys from the state later on this year I'm hoping the governor signs some of the legislation that comes through that will enable us to potentially have additional funds," said Stedman.
Either way, Norma Short of San Lorenzo Valley said nobody is touching her wood burning heater.
"I don't think so, I'm old I'll be gone way before they ever get the whole thing together anyways. You know like my mother used to say, I'll be gone before it gets too bad out there," said Short.