T4America Blog

News, press releases and other updates

Posts Tagged "FTA"

Greener Fleets: How federal dollars can supply the demand for clean transit

Electric buses line up in a brightly lit warehouse with an American flag in the background

The Low and No Emission Vehicles (Low No) program saw a big increase in funding in America’s historic infrastructure law, but an outdated and arbitrary requirement is pushing transit agencies toward buses that still pollute. Here’s how Congress and the Federal Transit Administration can avoid locking in emissions for years to come.

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Stop funding transit like it’s 1982, Congress

Congress has suggested that they may focus on infrastructure in an upcoming stimulus bill. It’s not entirely clear what Congress will do—or if spending on infrastructure is the right way to stimulate the economy right now—but if Congress does want to pass an infrastructure package, they should stop spending money like it’s 1982. 

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Congrats USDOT, for a job poorly done

Congress required USDOT to spend its 2018 transit funds by the end of this year, and USDOT was poised to fail. But at the last minute, Congress bailed them out by easing the requirement. As the deadline approaches, USDOT is still sitting on hundreds of millions of dollars in grants that it refuses to award, unnecessarily delaying critical new transit projects.

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House oversight hearing on transit grants left unanswered questions

The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee held an oversight hearing on Tuesday, July 16, to question the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) about its ongoing failure to release billions of congressionally-appropriated funds for local transit construction projects in a timely fashion. We still have questions.  While Acting FTA Administrator K. Jane Williams provided some answers to […]

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House committee grills USDOT on transit funding delays

Bird's eye view of construction on a wide road in Los Angeles.

The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee held an oversight hearing to question the Federal Transit Administration about its ongoing failure to release billions of congressionally-appropriated funds for local transit projects in a timely fashion through the transit Capital Investment Grant program.

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The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee is holding an oversight hearing on USDOT’s failure to release transit grants

Chairman Peter DeFazio (D-OR) of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee speaking at a hearing.

Transportation for America urges the House of Representatives to turn up the heat on USDOT for failing to release funding for transit grants during an oversight hearing on Tuesday, July 16.

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If verbal gymnastics was an Olympic sport, USDOT would take a medal

A deceptive announcement by USDOT two weeks ago resulted in mistaken headlines across the country giving credit to USDOT and the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) for “awarding” funding to a number of transit projects. A closer read reveals that USDOT didn’t actually distribute or award a single dime to advance new transit projects.

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BUILDing a better competitive grant program, in 5 steps

Under President Trump, USDOT has hijacked the TIGER/BUILD competitive grant program, taking it far from its intended function. After a decade of experience with the program there are a number of simple steps that lawmakers could take to get it back on track and even improve it.

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Government shutdown previewed a future without federal transit funding

With federal employees at the Federal Transit Administration furloughed during the recent record-length shutdown, transit funding wasn’t being distributed and grant/loan programs ground to a halt. New projects were further delayed and transit providers were faced with hard choices about service cuts, showing the vital importance of federal funding for transit.

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Cities eager to receive transit dollars from USDOT are receiving letters instead

Instead of approving projects and providing the money cities have applied for, USDOT is “allowing” cities to move ahead with construction on transit capital projects and incur costs that might one day be reimbursed by USDOT.

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Cities left in the dark by an agency that once partnered with them to build new transit

Many local transit project sponsors are in the dark about the status of their applications for federal transit funds, left to wonder why the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has not granted funding to their projects. But these cities have remained publicly quiet about it for fear of harming their chances of eventually receiving funding, taking the pressure off the administration to fund and support transit projects.

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With the 2018 fiscal year over, how much money has USDOT obligated to transit projects?

The 2018 fiscal year closed yesterday, wrapping up a year in which USDOT received more than $1.4 billion from Congress to invest in new transit construction and improvement projects across the country. With another infusion of cash coming (eventually) for FY 2019, it’s time for a look at how much USDOT still has on hand from 2018—as well as the unspent funds from FY 2017.

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T4America joins a parade of letters to USDOT urging them to do their job and get transit projects moving

In a parade of letters, T4America joined a chorus of elected representatives going on the record to urge the US Department of Transportation to do their job required by the law and award funds to expeditiously advance [transit] projects, communicate more clearly with local communities about the status of their transit projects, and recognize that a bipartisan majority in Congress has twice rejected their wishes to eliminate the transit capital construction program.

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USDOT has become the biggest obstacle in the way of delivering transit projects on time and on budget

Our updated Stuck in the Station resource shows how USDOT was already slow-rolling transit funding well before Congress gave them another $1.4 billion 157+ days ago to build or expand transit systems across the country.

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Trump administration has effectively halted the pipeline of new transit projects

Last March, Congress provided the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) with about $1.4 billion to help build and expand transit systems across the country. 142 days later and counting, FTA has obligated almost none of these funds to new transit projects. Our resource—Stuck in the Station—will continue tracking exactly how long FTA has been declining to do their job, how much money has been committed, and which communities are paying a hefty price in avoidable delays.

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U.S. Senate passes transportation appropriations bill with robust funding for transit, rail programs

press release

The US Senate again rejected the Trump administration’s proposal to eliminate or severely cut vital transportation programs that local communities rely on by adopting its FY19 Transportation Housing and Urban Development (THUD) appropriations bill. In perhaps their strongest rebuke of the president’s disdain for transit, the bill language specifically requests that USDOT manage the BUILD program (formerly TIGER) as it did during the Obama administration.

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This is the podcast for transit lovers

Cities across the country have been turning to transit-oriented development (TOD) as a way to build communities with greater opportunity for all of their residents. A new podcast from our Smart Growth America colleagues explores some great TOD projects around the country and the lessons that others have learned.

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Pilot program to support smart planning around new transit lines will benefit 21 different cities

How can communities make the best use of land around transit lines and stops, efficiently locate jobs and housing near new transit stations, and boost ridership (increasing the amount of money gained back at the farebox along the way)? 21 communities today received a total of $19.5 million in federal grants from a new pilot program intended to do exactly that.

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Helping interested communities make better use of land around transit lines and stops

A new pilot program from the Federal Transit Administration will help communities make better use of land around transit lines and stops. For those interested in applying, T4America recently pulled together several experts in a session to help them understand how to best take advantage.

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New grant program to support smart development around transit lines is open for business

A program created in the 2012 transportation law to help communities plan for transit-oriented development is open for business — and T4America is ready to help your community win some of that grant funding.

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