Tribal Transit Mobility

The purpose of the Tribal Transit Mobility Grant program is to provide for the transportation needs of tribal communities.

The Legislature created this program as part of the Move Ahead Washington transportation funding package. Tribal Transit Mobility Grant funding is identified under the spending summary at up to $10 million per biennium for the next 16 years.

Tribal transit funds

Tribal Transit Mobility Grant funds are part of the Consolidated Grant program. WSDOT is conducting a second call for projects for the 2023-2025 biennium.

WSDOT anticipates that approximately $4.6 million will be available for this application cycle.

WSDOT will submit a list of recommended projects for funding to the Legislature by September 1, 2023.

Eligible applicants

Federally recognized tribes.

Eligible projects

Grants for federally recognized tribes may be for transit-related purposes.

New applicants may only propose two-year projects. Applicants that have already received WSDOT grant funding may propose two- or four-year projects. Examples of eligible project types include:


Projects that purchase assets such as vehicles, equipment, and bus shelters. Large construction projects and ferry vessel purchases are not eligible.


Projects such as feasibility studies, coordination, or other planning activities that address the needs of applicants and the communities they serve. Examples may include but are not limited to transit feasibility studies, service planning, capital asset assessment, and zero-emission fleet transition planning.

Operations and maintenance

Projects directly related to system operation such as operating assistance for public transportation services, operating assistance for paratransit/special needs transportation services, and feeder-bus service for the intercity network. Building and vehicle maintenance costs are eligible operating expenses. This may also include training related to new transportation technologies and other transportation-related opportunities.

Mobility management

Projects focused on information services that help providers and passengers coordinate and understand available options. Mobility management also includes short-range planning, management activities, or activities for improving coordination among public transportation providers and other transportation services. 

Match requirements

Applicants must provide matching funds for each project. Required match is determined by project type.

  • Ten percent of total project costs: Sustain current operations or mobility management projects previously funded by a Consolidated grant.
  • Five percent of total projects costs: Capital projects, new operations, mobility management, or planning projects; and expanding operations or mobility management projects funded by a Consolidated grant.

Evaluation criteria

WSDOT grants analysts will review submitted applications for completeness and eligibility before the applications are forwarded for evaluation.

WSDOT will convene a panel of subject-matter experts to evaluate and rank each application based on the extent that the proposed project:

  • Establishes, preserves, or improves public transportation services.
  • Addresses a recognized need within a community and reflects a community-led process of coordination and input.
  • Defines specific performance measures the applicant will use to determine the project’s success.
  • Leverages funds from other sources and documents local commitment to support and implement the project.
  • Connects to other transportation systems and/or modes.
  • Appears to be feasible as described.
  • Describes sufficient applicant experience managing transportation projects and grant awards.
  • Describes sufficient financial capability and resources by the applicant to implement and carry out the project either within two (July 1, 2023-June 30, 2025) or four (July 1, 2023-June 30, 2027) years, depending on the length and scope of the proposed project.
  • Contributes to the state’s effort to maintain the number of public transportation vehicles within their minimum useful life.

Important dates

June 15, 2023: WSDOT posts notice of funding opportunity.

July 1, 2023: 2023-2025 biennium begins.

July 5, 2023: Application available in the online Grants Management System (GMS)

10 a.m. July 11, 2023: Informational webinar for prospective applicants.

3 p.m. July 31, 2023: Applications due in GMS.

August 2023: Evaluation panel reviews and scores applications. WSDOT develops recommended funding list.

Sept. 1, 2023: WSDOT submits recommended funding list to Transportation Committee and Office of Financial Management.

September 2023: WSDOT notifies applicants of grant funding.

Sign up for grant updates

To stay informed about WSDOT public transportation grants, you can register in GovDelivery.


The table below shows 15 new Tribal Transit Mobility projects funded for $4.2 million and awarded for the 2023-2025 biennium.



Project title


Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation Yakima Extended weekend fare-free service $108,227
Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation Yakima Purchase two ADA-equipped vehicles for rural services $257,931
Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation Benton, Franklin Hermiston to Tri-Cities route study $87,400
Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation Walla Walla Whistler expansion operations and maintenance $406,238
Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation Walla Walla Whistler expansion bus purchase $551,000
Cowlitz Indian Tribe Clark, Cowlitz, Lewis Transit program operations for the second fiscal year of the 2023-2025 biennium $341,800
Cowlitz Indian Tribe Clark, Cowlitz, Lewis Electric ADA van purchase $142,500
Jamestown S'Klallam Tribe Clallam Purchase and install bus shelters, bike lockers, and bike racks $283,955
Lummi Indian Business Council Whatcom Replace two transit buses $256,500
Makah Tribal Council Clallam Replace one cutaway bus $171,000
Nisqually Indian Tribe Thurston Purchase three, 10-passenger, electric, ADA-accessible transit vans to provide rural mobility services $242,250
Samish Nation Island, San Juan, Skagit, Whatcom Elder's transportation project for demand-response service $114,699
Samish Nation Island, San Juan, Skagit, Whatcom Purchase of one, 12-passenger, ADA-accessible bus and one, 7-passenger, ADA-accessible van $261,250
Snoqualmie Indian Tribe King Fund operating costs for Snoqualmie Valley Transit to serve Snoqualmie Tribal members and other members of the community $539,446
Spokane Tribe of Indians Stevens Moccasin Express continued operations $450,000


Slow down on ice and snow.

It's easier to skid or lose control traveling at higher speeds. Give yourself more time to stop.

Carry chains, practice installing them.

Winter conditions could mean chains are required on your route. Practice putting them on your vehicle ahead of time.

Pack your winter car kit.

Carry extra supplies like warm clothing, ice scraper and brush, jumper cables and other emergency items.