To help implement President Obama's plan for an "America Built to Last," the Department of Transportation (DOT) announced it will be doling out $826.5 million in federal grants this year to repair and upgrade public transit buses and facilities nationwide.
"An American economy that's built to last must be built on a solid foundation, and when we have buses, transit facilities, and other equipment that's in disrepair, we simply cannot afford to ignore them," Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said in a press release. "The President knows that transportation projects like those we'll fund from today's announcement will help provide businesses and families with the safest, fastest, most efficient way to connect with opportunity."
Breaking down how your $826.5 will be spent, $650 million will go to actually repair and modernize vehicles and transit facilities. Another $125 million will be use to do things DOT says will improve your "quality of life through expanded transportation choices," like new routes, less congestion and new services to help economically disadvantaged populations, including senior citizens and people with disabilities. Finally, $51.5 million will help city transit systems comply with federal air quality standards increase their use of sustainable alternative fuels.
The funds, authorized under the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century, may be distributed to selected localities as early as July 2012.
"Reliable and desirable transit systems enable hard-working American families to keep billions of dollars in their wallets rather than hand them over at the gas pump," said Federal Transit Administrator Peter Rogoff in a press release. "These investments will ensure that transit remains a dependable option and advance President Obama's goal for an America Built to Last."