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Frequently Asked Questions

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Answer:

FTA does not have a mechanism to facilitate partnering.  But we encourage all applicants, and public and private partners to reach out to each other to form teams for this competition.

Answer:

An Early Development Agreement (EDA) is a document that is developed jointly between the project applicant and FTA. The EDA describes the parameters for implementing PIPP project waiver or modification requests. The EDA will identify the specific roles of all parties, define procedures, and establish timeframes and other conditions under which the project will be administered.

Answer:

No, under MAP-21, given the blending of the two programs, eligible activities for this program include projects that were funded under both the SAFETEA-LU section 5310 and section 5317 programs. In addition to the blending , one new type of eligible project was included under MAP-21. See (B) below.

Specifically, section 5310 now authorizes grants for: (A) public transportation projects planned, designed, and carried out to meet the special needs of seniors and individuals with disabilities when public transportation is insufficient, inappropriate, or unavailable; (B) public transportation projects that improve access to fixed route service and decrease reliance by individuals with disabilities on complementary paratransit; (C) public transportation projects that exceed the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Action of 1990; and (D) alternatives to public transportation that assist seniors and individuals with disabilities with transportation.

Answer:

Yes, but the waiver or modification requests must be limited to FTA requirements.

Answer:

Workforce development includes activities related to employment or education with a direct linkage to the capital project.  Examples include developing apprenticeships, on-the-job training, and instructional training for public transportation maintenance and operations occupations.  Refer to FTA’s website for additional information.

Answer:

Yes, you may apply to IMI. However, applicants with another pending application should clearly disclose in the application that the applicant is seeking funding for the proposed project from another grant program. In the event the project is selected by the other grant program, the applicant should notify FTA and withdraw the application given the selection and duplication of applications. FTA will not award funding from two sources for the same scope of work. Additionally, DOT funds from another source cannot be used to support the local match requirement for IMI projects.

Answer:

Yes. A report is required one year after the completion of construction of a PIPP project. For projects that involve a private entity in the operations or maintenance of the project, a second report is required two years after the project begins revenue operations. Project sponsors will be responsible for submitting an independently prepared report that summarizes lessons learned from implementation of approved waiver or modification requests and from the PIPP process. These reports will evaluate the success of the process, its overall impact on the project, and recommend whether the waivers or modifications should be made routine through statutory or regulatory changes. The report should include an explanation of how the changes improved the delivery of the project.

Answer:

No. School buses are not eligible.

Answer:

No. There is no requirement for projects that go beyond the requirements of the ADA to be new.

Answer:

Yes. MAP-21 requires that at least 55 percent of the grantee’s section 5310 apportionment be used for traditional 5310 projects: capital public transportation projects planned, designed, and carried out to meet the special needs of seniors and individuals with disabilities when public transportation is insufficient, inappropriate, or unavailable. Thus, the most that could be spent on operating assistance is 45 percent, but this is a maximum and not a minimum. Note: Acquisition of public transportation service is considered a capital expense under the program.

Answer:

Please visit FTA’s Private Sector Participation website.

For any additional questions:

  • For program matters, contact Tom Yedinak, Private Sector Liaison, Office of Budget and Policy, (202) 366-5137, Tom.Yedinak@dot.gov 
  • For legal matters, contact Bonnie Graves, Attorney-Advisor, Office of Chief Counsel, (202) 366-4011 or Bonnie.Graves@dot.gov
Answer:

Yes. Mobility management is defined as an eligible capital expense under Section 5302, Definitions. Section 5310 will continue to list Mobility Management and coordination programs among public transportation providers and other human service agencies providing mobility management as an eligible capital expense.

Answer:

Workforce development match for CAA and ADA projects is still 80% federal, 20% local.

Answer:

Yes, as defined as replacement of a vehicle’s propulsion system, including replacing a propulsion system with a propulsion system of a different type (e.g., replacing a diesel engine with an electric battery propulsion system). Rolling stock repowering is permitted for buses that have met at least 40 percent of their useful life; in which case, it must be designed to permit the bus to meet its useful life requirements. Rolling stock repowering is permitted as part of a rebuild; in which case, it must extend the useful life by at least 4 years.

Answer:

In order for a Mobility Management project to be an eligible “traditional” 5310 project and be considered for the 55 percent threshold, it must be : 1) be a project planned, designed, and carried out to meet the special needs of seniors and individuals with disabilities when public transportation is insufficient, unavailable, or inappropriate; 2) carried out by and eligible subrecipient and; 3) included in a locally developed coordinated transit human-services transportation plan.

Answer:

The Section 5310 program circular treats travel training as a component of mobility management, which is considered a capital expense and is eligible for up to 80 percent Federal match.

Answer:

Administrative costs must be directly related to implementing or overseeing a project.  For examples of eligible administrative costs, refer to 2 CFR Part 225, Appendix B to Part 225 - Selected Items of Cost.

Answer:

Yes. Remanufactured vehicles are vehicles that have undergone substantial structural, mechanical or electrical rebuilding, restoration or updating by a third party and then are sold or leased to a transit agency.

If an applicant includes remanufactured vehicles in the application, whether as a partnership with a remanufacturer or through a proposed competitive procurement, the application must address how the project will meet the remanufactured vehicle requirements identified in FTA Circular C.5010.1E --Award Management Requirements. This information should be addressed as a part of the project implementation plan and includes the following:

  • Procurement. The recipient must identify in their application and procurement their intent to purchase previously-owned and/or remanufactured vehicles.  As part of the bid or proposal the recipient must obtain certification and documentation ascertaining that applicable Bus Testing and Buy America requirements have been met by the original owner or remanufacturer.
  • Useful Life. The grant application and procurement of a previously-owned vehicle must identify the applicable useful life for the vehicle.
  • Bus Testing. The original vehicles must have met the Bus Testing Requirements in place at the time of acquisition by the original owner. 
  • Buy America. The original vehicles must have met the Buy America requirements in place at the time of acquisition by the original owner.  Remanufactured vehicles must meet the applicable Buy America requirements for rolling stock for all new components and subcomponents added or replaced on the vehicle. 
  • DBE Requirements. When a remanufacturer responds to a solicitation for new, or remanufactured vehicles, with a vehicle that has post-production alterations or retro-fitting to provide a “like new” vehicle, the remanufacturer is considered a transit vehicle manufacturer and must comply with the DOT DBE regulations.
Answer:

Yes. “Revenue service” means carrying passengers. Fare-free transit is included in revenue service. However, the service must be public transportation and open to all.

Answer:

Before receiving a grant the designated recipient must certify that: 1) the projects selected by the recipient are included in a locally developed, coordinated public transit-human services transportation plan; 2) the plan was developed and approved through a process that included participation by seniors, individuals with disabilities, representatives of public, private, and nonprofit transportation and human services providers and other members of the pubic; and 3) to the maximum extent feasible, the services funded will be coordinated with transportation services assisted by other Federal departments and agencies, including any transportation activities carried out by a recipient of a grant from the Department of Health and Human Services. Please also review in detail FTA C 9070.1G page V-1 through V-4.

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