Federal Transit Administration Programs

The Federal Transit Administration provides funds to support public transportation throughout the state of Washington. WSDOT's Public Transportation Division administers some of these federal funds, which are largely provided to local transportation service providers. Following are high level descriptions of these federal funding sources:

5303, 5304 and 5305 Metropolitan & Statewide Planning and Nonmetropolitan Transportation Planning. Provides funding and procedural requirements for multimodal transportation planning in metropolitan areas and states. 

5307 Urbanized Area Formula Funding. Makes federal resources available to urbanized areas, and to governors for transit capital and operating assistance in urbanized areas and for transportation-related planning. The programs includes:

5307(h) Passenger Ferry Grant Program. Competitive funding for projects that support passenger ferry systems in urbanized areas.  

5309 Capital Investment Grants. Funds major transit capital investments. The program was recently changed exclusively to fixed-guideway by the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act.

5310 Enhanced Mobility of Seniors & Individuals with Disabilities. Provides formula funding to states for the purpose of assisting primarily private nonprofit groups in meeting the transportation needs of older adults and people with disabilities when transportation services provided are unavailable, insufficient, or inappropriate for meeting these needs.

5311 Formula Grants for Rural Areas. Provides capital, planning, and operating assistance to states to support public transportation in rural areas with populations of less than 50,000, where many residents often rely on public transit to reach their destinations. The program includes:

5311(f) Intercity Bus Program. In most cases, each state must spend no less than 15 percent of its annual 5311 apportionment for the development and support of intercity bus transportation.

5311(b)(3) Rural Transportation Assistance Program. A source of funding to assist in the design and implementation of training and technical assistance projects and other support services tailored to meet the needs of transit operators in non-urbanized areas.

5311(c)(2)(B) Tribal Transit Formula Grants. A source of funding for federally recognized Indian tribes to provide public transportation services on and around Indian reservations or tribal land in rural areas.

5337 State of Good Repair Grants. Provides capital assistance for maintenance, replacement, and rehabilitation projects of high-intensity fixed guideway and bus systems to help transit agencies maintain assets in a state of good repair. Additionally, grants are eligible for developing and implementing transit asset management plans.

5339 Bus & Bus Facilities Infrastructure Investment Program. Makes federal resources available to states and direct-recipients to replace, rehabilitate and purchase buses and related equipment; and construct bus-related facilities, including technological changes or innovations to modify low- or noemission vehicles or facilities. The program includes:

5339(a) Grants for Buses and Bus Facilities Formula Program. The formula allocation of 5339.

5339(b) Bus and Bus Facilities Discretionary Program. A competitive program that provides funds to direct recipients, including states and tribes, to improve the condition of bus fleets and mobility options in rural and urban areas; as well as expand access to employment, educational and healthcare facilities.

5339(c) Low or No Emission Vehicle Program. A competitive program that provides funding to state and local governmental authorities for the purchase or lease of zero-emission and low-emission transit buses as well as acquisition, construction,
and leasing of required supporting facilities.

Other federal programs that provide public transportation funding

These programs are not administered by the Federal Transit Administration nor WSDOT's Public Transportation Division.

Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program. Funds transportation projects or programs that will contribute to the attainment or maintenance of the national ambient air quality standards for ozone, carbon monoxide, and particulate

Medicaid. Medicaid is a federal program that pays for the basic health services, including nonemergency medical transportation, of people with low incomes, as well as for long-term care for seniors and people with disabilities. States administer their Medicaid programs, establishing eligibility standards, benefits packages, payment rates and rules consistent with federal requirements. The Washington State Health Care Authority administers the state’s Medicaid program as Apple Health.

Tribal Transportation Program. Provides access to basic community services to enhance the quality of life in Indian country.

For more information about WSDOT Public Transportation Division's role in these federal funding programs, contact Evan Olsen, evan.olsen@wsdot.wa.gov or 360-705-6929.