On June 4, the U.S. Department of Transportation announced the availability of approximately $100 million in competitive grant funds through the Federal Transit Administration’s (FTA) new Ladders of Opportunity Initiative.
These funds may be used to modernize and expand transit bus service specifically for the purpose of connecting disadvantaged and low-income individuals, veterans, older adults, people with disabilities, youths, and others with local workforce training, employment centers, health care, and other vital services.
A key evaluative factor as identified by FTA will be the extent to which the applicant forms strong federal and local partnerships to address the mobility challenge. This includes bringing local workforce development, training, education, veterans, transportation, and planning stakeholders together with representation of key customer groups (people with low-incomes, people with disabilities, youths, veterans, older adult populations, etc.) to formulate a plan to address building Ladders of Opportunity in an area.
Except for projects proposed by Indian Tribes, proposals for funding eligible projects in rural (nonurban) areas must be submitted as part of a consolidated State proposal. States and Direct Recipients (FTA Section 5307 funded programs) may also submit consolidated proposals for projects in urbanized areas.
The Notice of Funding Availability for the Ladders of Opportunity Initiative is available here. Proposals are due by August 4.