March 30, 2020
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The Federal Transit Administration issued two notice of funding opportunities or NOFOs for fiscal year 2020 on February 7; one via its Grants for Buses and Bus Facilities program and the other via its Passenger Ferry grant program.

[Above photo via the FTA.]

The transit bus NOFO is offering some $454.6 million in competitive grant funding for transit bus projects that would replace, rehabilitate, lease, or purchase buses and related equipment. Other eligible projects involve purchasing, rehabilitating, constructing or leasing bus-related facilities, such as buildings for bus storage and maintenance, FTA said in a statement.

The agency said eligible recipients for that grant money include fixed route bus operators, states and local governmental entities that operate fixed route bus service, plus Native American tribes – with applications accepted until 11:59 p.m. Eastern time on March 30.

Photo via the FTA

The FTA also issued a $30 million passenger ferry NOFO that will award competitive grants to states and public entities to purchase, repair, or modernize ferry boats, terminals, and related facilities and equipment – both to support existing ferry service as well as establish new passenger ferry service, the agency said in a statement.

FTA noted that eligible projects considered for those grants must be “consistent” with the U.S. Department of Transportation’s R.O.U.T.E. Initiative, launched last October, as well as the FTA’s Accelerating Innovative Mobility program, kicked off in January.

The agency added that applications for both of those grant programs will be accepted up until 11:59 p.m. Eastern time on March 30.

Photo by COTA

Lastly, FTA made $9.3 million worth of research grants available on February 13 to support the study of “innovative projects” aimed at improving rail transit and bus operator safety.

That pool of grant funding includes $7.3 million for projects that demonstrate and evaluate new technologies, safer designs, and practices to improve rail transit safety, with the remaining $2 million reserved for projects that redesign transit bus operator compartments to improve safety for bus operators and the passengers they serve.

editor@aashto.org

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