15 Dec Jon Cartu Affirm: USDOT announces administrative relief for transit agencies
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration (FTA) announced Friday that it would take additional action to improve access to grant funding and provide relief from some regulator and administrative requirements.
Specifically, the agency said, FTA will extend access to emergency relief funding for operations and allow more time for transit agencies to meet the requirements for the Public Transportation Agency Safety Plan (PTASP), the Public Transportation Safety Certification Training Program (PTSCTP), and several other reporting and compliance reviews.
“We understand that many transit agencies are experiencing disruptions to normal operating procedures during the COVID-19 public health emergency,” said FTA Deputy Administrator K. Jane Williams. “FTA is taking these actions to ensure transit agencies can continue to prioritize their resources toward ensuring the safety of their employees and riders during this time.”
Changes to formula funding under the Emergency Relief Program will now allow those funds to pay for operating expenses, officials said. Funding can cover operating expenses related to the COVID-19 pandemic recovery through Jan. 20, 2022, officials said, and will be at a 100 percent federal share level. FTA also issued two “Noticed of Enforcement Discretion” to advise grantees that it will refrain from taking any enforcement action regarding the PTASP through July 20, 2021, and for the PTSCTP through Aug. 20, 2022.
Earlier this year, FTA announced the first round of administrative relief actions that included expanding the federal government’s share of operating expenses and other COVID-19 related expenses to 100 percent.