The City of Amarillo is slated to receive just under $4 million from federal and state funding sources for use within the transit program.
City council members recently approved a resolution authorizing the city manager to execute and file an application with the Federal Transit Administration for fiscal year 2018-19 in the amount of $3,362,659 for capital and operating expenses and $513,705 with TxDot for operating expenses associated with the Amarillo City Transit program of projects.
Officials also conducted a public hearing regarding the federal allocation, enabling residents to provide comment and express any concerns related to the operation of the Amarillo transit system and its proposed program of projects. Amarillo Transit Director Marita Wellage-Riley said the resolution acknowledges acceptance of the FTA funding allotment.
“That is an increase of 2.6 percent over our federal allocation from last year,” she said. “It requires a match, and the funds are used for our Fixed Route service and Paratransit, preventive maintenance on our ACT vehicles, the purchase of new capital items and vehicles we would request. This is what has been allocated to us based on the total amount of funds.”
Wellage-Riley said the federal funds have a match component while the state funding is based on the city’s population, miles and service of operation.
“Our federal grant request requires a match of 80-20 on the preventive maintenance and capital items and 50-50 on the operating items,” she said. “It’s available to us for five years. The TxDot grant is 100 percent funding and there is no match for that.”
Officials said Fixed Route service is provided to the public with eight fixed routes circulating throughout the city on a set schedule, noting buses are fully accessible to persons with disabilities. Meanwhile, Paratransit service is reserved for persons who are unable to navigate an accessible fixed route bus and system, officials said, referencing the service is dedicated to certified clients only.