Washington, DC – Today, U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer and U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand announced $2,040,000 in federal funding for the Broome County Department of Public Transportation (BC Transit). The funding was allocated through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Federal Transit Administration (FTA). This funding will allow BC Transit to purchase new hybrid electric buses. These new buses will replace older diesel model buses and reduce emissions and maintenance expenses to make the BC Transit system more reliable and efficient.
“BC Transit’s service is a lifeline for Broome County residents and this new vital funding will allow them to purchase new fuel efficient, hybrid buses that will save bus riders money and help the environment all at the same time,” said Senator Schumer. “I fought to help create this funding stream because investment in transportation infrastructure is critical for residents and businesses. I will continue to work to ensure that the BC Transit and other transit agencies across New York have the funding they need to modernize their fleets so commuters can have a safer, faster and more efficient ride.”
“These federal funds will allow the Broome Country Department of Public Transportation to invest in new, cleaner-running public buses,” said Senator Gillibrand. “This is a major investment for Broome Country that will help strengthen our transportation infrastructure, making service more efficient for commuters while reducing air pollution.”
“We have many residents in Broome County who rely on BC Transit daily. I cannot thank Senator Gillibrand and Senator Schumer enough for making this important investment in Broome County. This funding will allow BC Transit to buy new hybrid, electric buses which will replace older models in our aging fleet. This investment in BC Transit will not only benefit our residents but improve our ridership and boost our economy.” said Jason Garnar, Broome County Executive.
This funding is awarded through the Bus and Bus Facilities Program and is administered by DOT’s Federal Transit Administration. The Bus and Bus Facilities Program provides funding to transit agencies though formula allocations and competitive grants, which can be used to update and purchase buses and build bus-related facilities, and make technological innovations to modify low or no emission vehicles or facilities. More information about this FTA bus program can be accessed on their grant website.
Schumer has long advocated for BC Transit and other transit agencies across New York State. In 2016 Schumer announced the inclusion of a new bus program in the transportation bill which created a vital funding stream for BC and other transit systems in the state. Specifically, the 5-year federal transportation bill, the FAST (Fixing America’s Surface Transportation) Act, provided a total of over $16.3 billion in direct infrastructure spending to NY State over the next five years. In particular, the FAST Act created a new discretionary program that municipalities like Broome County can apply to, allowing them to access funds for replacing aging bus fleets. Schumer made funding this program a priority, following countless meetings with New York State transportation leaders who had urgent bus funding needs. Schumer said his efforts to help create this new bus program, helped Broome County and other transit agencies in New York shoulder the cost of maintain aging fleets in recent years.