Through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Stimulus (CARES) Act, the U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Transit Administration has made available $25 billion in funding for public transportation operations, maintenance, capital, and administrative expenses. $2.2 billion of the funding is focused on rural transit. In addition to federal stimulus funding, FTA has extended grant application deadlines, and several organizations have also extended grant application periods. Information is posted below on the new funding and changes to existing grant programs.
FTA CARES Act Apportionments and FAQs
Under CARES Act funding for public transportation, the federal share is up to 100 percent at the discretion of the recipient. Funds are available until expended. Visit FTA’s CARES Act page for Section 5307, Section 5311, and Section 5311C apportionments. FTA has posted responses to Frequently Asked Questions about CARES Act funding.
FTA Extends Competitive Grant Program Deadlines
Deadlines for several FTA grant programs have been extended. The extension applies to grant programs with active notices of funding opportunities (NOFOs). Affected grants include Accelerating Innovative Mobility (now 5/18/20), Helping Obtain Prosperity for Everyone (HOPE) Program (now 6/3/20), Buses and Bus Facilities Program (now 4/29/20), and the Passenger Ferry Grant Program (now 4/29/20).
Helping Obtain Prosperity for Everyone (HOPE) Program – Applications due June 3
FTA’s Helping Obtain Prosperity for Everyone (HOPE) program makes available $8.5 million to improve transit services or facilities in areas of persistent poverty through funding for planning, engineering, technical studies, or financial plans. An area of persistent poverty is a county with 20% or more of the population living in poverty over the 30 years preceding the date of enactment of the Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020, or December 20, 2019, as measured by the 1990 and 2000 decennial census and the most recent Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates. Applicants for the HOPE program must be eligible recipients or sub-recipients under section 5307, 5310, or 5311 of title 49 of United States Code.
Other Grant Deadlines Extensions
The following transportation grants have also declared application deadline extensions.
Innovations in Accessible Mobility – Applications due May 1
The National Aging and Disability Transportation Center (NADTC) is funding up to 10 communities for projects designed to increase accessible transportation options for older adults and people with disabilities, including projects related to Coronavirus response. Grants of up to $30,000 each will be awarded. Learn more and apply.
NADTC will feature recent Accessible Mobility grantee INCOG Area Agency on Aging (Tulsa, OK) and its Creating Access to Nutrition Program during a half-hour April 23 webinar (12:30 pm Eastern/ 9:30 am Pacific).
AARP Community Challenge – Applications due May 15
Funding is available for eligible government agencies and nonprofit organizations to improve civic engagement, create vibrant public spaces, deliver a range of transportation options, support accessible housing, use Smart Cities data applications, and initiate other community improvements. The grant amount depends on project size. Learn more at AARP’s Community Challenge homepage.