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Rural Transit News

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FTA invites comments on proposed changes to Joint Development Guidance

Posted April 19, 2019

FTA has placed in the Federal Register docket and on its website proposed changes to its Joint Development Guidance (Circular (7050.1A).  The changes would increase flexibility for transit agencies to pursue joint development projects, resulting in more value capture opportunities that help create value for both transit systems and surrounding communities. The guidance also would streamline FTA’s regulations and approval process. FTA seeks public comment on the proposed changes to its joint development process. Submit comments by June 3, 2019.

FTA seeks comments on proposed changes to NTD Reporting

Posted April 9, 2019

FTA’s National Transit Database (NTD) was established by Congress to be the nation's primary source for information and statistics on the transit systems of the United States. Recipients and beneficiaries of FTA grants under the Urbanized Area Formula Program (49 U.S.C. 5307) or Rural Area Formula Program (49 U.S.C. 5311) are required by law to report to the NTD. Based on feedback from NTD stakeholders and the transit industry, FTA is proposing to make reporting changes and clarifications to NTD reporting requirements. FTA seeks comment on these proposed changes and clarifications: 
  • New types of service
  • Changes to forms A-30, A-20, D-10 and FFA-10
  • Changes to safety event reporting
  • Clarification to requirements for reporting service information 
  • Clarification of terms 
  • Requirement for separate mode reporting 
  • Clarification to service survey standards
  • Clarification to reporting of miles in asset inventories 
  • Clarification of rural financial data reporting requirements

The Federal Register Notice for these proposed changes was published Tuesday, April 9, 2019 and is open for public comment through June 10, 2019. Changes will be made effective in September 2019.


Applications due May 3 for CTAA Rural and Tribal Technical Assistance

Posted March 29, 2019

The Community Transportation Association of America (CTAA) is accepting applications for planning assistance under the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural and Tribal Technical Assistance Programs. These programs provide planning assistance, at no cost, to rural and tribal communities to help establish new transit services, expand, enhance or improve existing services, or build transit facilities. The assistance is provided directly by CTAA staff. Applications are due by May 3, 2019.


FTA Seeks to Put Brakes on Human Trafficking, Offers $4 Million in Funding Opportunities

Posted March 29, 2019 - Updated April 19, 2019

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s (USDOT) Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has launched a new Human Trafficking Awareness and Public Safety Initiative. The initiative includes two Notices of Funding Opportunity (NOFOs) totaling $4 million to prevent human trafficking and other crimes that may occur on buses, trains, and other forms of public transportation.  Each NOFO offers $2 million in competitive funding and the application submission deadline for both is May 28, 2019.

  • The goal of the Innovations in Transit Public Safety NOFO is to develop projects that assist transit agencies with identifying and adopting specific measures to address public safety in transit systems, including crime prevention, human trafficking, and operator assault.  Eligible applicants for this program include state and local governmental entities; providers of public transportation; nonprofit organizations; or a consortium of entities, including a provider of public transportation, that will share costs, risks, and rewards of early deployment and demonstration of innovation. Applicants must be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) database. 
  • The Crime Prevention and Public Safety Awareness NOFO has the goal of developing and disseminating materials supporting public safety awareness campaigns for transit systems, including crime prevention, human trafficking, and operator assault. Eligibility for this program is limited to national nonprofit organizations.

The FTA Human Trafficking Awareness and Public Safety Initiative builds upon the USDOT's work with transportation stakeholders across all modes of transportation to prevent human trafficking.  

FTA hosted two webinars on these initiatives which can be streamed through the links on this web page (scroll down to bottom half of the page).


NADTC invites photo contest submissions by April 26 

Posted March 29, 2019

The National Aging and Disability Transportation Center announced its announce its third annual photo contest, seeking photos that illustrate NADTC's mission to increase the availability and accessibility of community transportation options for older adults and people with disabilities.  Such photos could include people of color using transportation; youth and young adults with disabilities; caregivers or family providing support to an individual using transportation; tribal transportation; rural landscape transportation; service animals assisting their owners as they ride or get ready to ride transportation; transportation riders using technology that supports transportation access or accessible mobility; good customer service or travel training; vehicle operator assistance; and transit dispatchers.  The contest is open to individuals who are transportation users or advocates, and organizations that provide, fund or are involved in (e.g., plan, advocate for, promote) community transportation and serve older adults and/or people with disabilities, including state or local government agencies, as well as nonprofit and for-profit organizations. All entries must be received by 11:59 p.m. EDT on April 26, 2019.


Proposals due May 14 for FTA Low-No grants 

Posted March 21, 2019

The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) is accepting project proposals for FY 2019 funding under the Low or No Emission Program (Low-No) Program.  The Low-No Program supports the transition of the nation’s transit fleet to the lowest polluting and most energy efficient transit vehicles. Low-No funding funds purchase or lease of zero-emission and low-emission transit buses, including acquisition, construction, and leasing of required supporting facilities.  Designated recipient of FTA grants, states, local governmental authorities and Indian tribes are eligible to apply.  The application deadline is May 14, 2019.  FTA is hosting a webinar on Thursday, April 11.  Section 5311 subrecipients should contact their state department of transportation for information on applying through the state.


FTA posts updated Implementation Guidelines for Drug & Alcohol Regulations in Public Transportation

Posted March 4, 2019

The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has posted updated guidelines to provide transit employers with the knowledge and resources needed to develop, implement, and manage a drug and alcohol testing program to comply with FTA and U.S. Department of Transportation regulations.  FTA Report No. 0127, Implementation Guidelines for Drug and Alcohol Regulations in Public Transportation provides employers with updated guidelines to assess their level of compliance, validate policies and procedures, and identify areas that require modification.  This guidance was last revised in 2009.



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Posted May 2, 2018

New Resources

Updated April 19, 2019

New from the National RTAP


New from the  National Aging and Disability Transportation Center (NADTC)

Blount County, TN, Community Action Agency SMiles program is featured in NADTC's Volunteer Transportation Programs Topic Spotlight.  In this spotlight document, NADTC looks at volunteer transportation as a viable alternative for older adults and people with disabilities, examines funding, community support and collaboration, and the measurement structures of programs in Colorado, California, and Virginia, as well as Tennessee.

In December 2018, the NADTC launches its Every Ride Counts campaign, which is designed to support local communities’ efforts to promote the availability and accessibility of transportation options for older adults, people with disabilities and caregivers. 


New from the National Center on Mobility Management (NCMM)


New from the Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP)