WASHINGTON -- Dealers’ cash-for-clunkers submissions continue to be cleared at an accelerated pace, with 93 percent now paid or approved by the U.S. Transportation Department, the agency says.
A total of 636,370 claims for $2.7 billion were paid or approved as of yesterday morning, Transportation said today on its cars.gov Web site.
Of that, 562,360 vouchers for $2.4 billion were paid, the posting said. An additional 74,010 claims for $310.4 million were approved but not yet paid.
Approval is the next-to-last step before the Treasury Department wires the $3,500 or $4,500 rebate into a dealer’s bank account.
The government now has to pay as many as 119,066 claims for $498.5 million if it is to meet Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood’s goal of reimbursing all properly submitted applications by Sept. 30.
Between July 27 and Aug. 25, dealers submitted a total of 681,426 vouchers for $2.9 billion.
The Transportation Department has increased the number of people processing dealer payments from a little over 200 in July to about 5,000 this month by assigning federal employees and hiring private contractors.
LaHood declined to say last week how much the government is paying in administrative costs to cover the new hiring as well as computer upgrades made to ease dealer filing access.