Ray Villeda, NBC 5 News
Funding for a program that helps get old cars off the road is down from previous years.
The clock is ticking on a program that gives North Texans cash for clunkers.
Funding for the AirCheckTexas program, which began this week, is down about 88 percent from years past.
The program run by the North Central Texas Council of Governments helps take cars that are older than 10 years old or have failed emissions test within the last 30 days off the road.
Car owners get a voucher of $3,000 to $3,500 for the purchase of a newer car. The old car is then crushed at a salvage yard.
The program has income requirements, as well as specific dealerships that qualify.
The replacement car must have less than 70,000 miles and be a 2009 or newer model. The car an applicant currently owns and wants to retire through AirCheckTexas must be 10 years old or older or have recently failed an emissions inspection.
North Texas car dealers are scrambling to get cars that qualify.
"Oscar goes to auction two, three times a week to auction to find cars that qualify that have 70,000 miles or less," said Bob Callas, general manager of a dealership in Arlington.
He said he saw his first potential buyer Wednesday morning.