The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) on April 13 announced that $14 billion is being invested in states and transit agencies across the U.S. to help improve public transportation, meeting local goals, such as upgrading stations and tracks, transitioning to next-generation buses, planning and designing new transit corridors, ad providing specialized service for seniors and riders with disabilities.
As part of its annual support to transit systems nationwide, the FTA published details in the Federal Register about the formula funding that helps communities maintain and operate the trains, buses and ferries that provide more than half a million transit trips every month. This funding, FTA says, “represents the largest-ever annual investment in American public transportation.”
According to the FTA, formula funding, which is established from formulas set by Congress based on population totals and transit ridership data, makes up more than two-thirds of the annual $21 billion transit program and provides the “backbone of transit agency budgets and allows them to maintain and expand service.”
At least 28 million people in the U.S. are transit-dependent and rely on trains, buses and ferries to get to jobs, school, community services and to see friends and family, FTA said. Others, the Administration adds, choose transit to leave their cars behind and reduce their carbon footprint.
Each year, more than 65% of the funding distributed by FTA to transit agencies comes from congressionally assigned formulas. This year’s transit formula funding, FTA says, represents a 28% increase over previous funding levels before the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law was passed.
“This funding will open more doors to Americans than ever before,” said FTA Administrator Nuria Fernandez. “Transit formula funding provides a lifeline for communities, and this record level of support will help create jobs, provide mobility to more people and address the climate crisis.”