[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 34 (Monday, February 22, 2016)]
[Pages 8818-8819]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-03539]



Federal Transit Administration

Fiscal Year 2014-2015 Public Transportation on Indian 
Reservations Program Project Selections

AGENCY: Federal Transit Administration (FTA), U.S. Department of 
Transportation (DOT).

ACTION: Tribal Transit Program Announcement of Project Selections.


SUMMARY: The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) announces the 
selection of projects with Fiscal Year (FY) 2014 and FY 2015 
appropriations for the Public Transportation on Indian Reservations 
Program Tribal Transit Program (TTP), as authorized by Section 5311 (j) 
of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21), 
Public Law 112-14 (July 2012). On December 9, 2014 FTA published a 
Federal Register Notice (79 FR 236) announcing the availability of 
Federal funding for the program. MAP-21 authorized approximately $5 
million annually for federally recognized Indian Tribes or Alaska 
Native villages, groups, or communities as identified by the Bureau of 
Indian Affairs (BIA) in the U.S. Department of the Interior for public 
transportation. FTA is allocating a total of approximately $10 million 
to selected projects in this notice since we are including FY 2015 
funding described in the December 2014 Notice of Funding Availability 
(NOFA). The TTP supports many types of projects including: Operating 
costs to enable tribes to start or continue transit services; capital 
to enable tribal investment in new or replacement equipment; and 
funding for tribal transit planning activities for public 
transportation services on and around Indian reservations. TTP services 
link tribal citizens to employment, food, healthcare, school, social 
services, recreation/leisure, and other key community connections. FTA 
funds may only be used for eligible purposes defined under 49 U.S.C 
5311 and described in the FTA Circular 9040.1G and consistent with the 
specific eligibility and priorities established in the December 2014 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Successful applicants should contact 
the appropriate FTA Regional office for information regarding applying 
for the funds or program-specific information. A list of Regional 
offices, along with a list of tribal liaisons can be found at 
www.fta.dot.gov. Unsuccessful applicants may contact [Eacute]lan 
Flippin, Office of Program Management at (202) 366-3800, email: 
[email protected] to arrange a proposal debriefing within 30 days of 
this announcement. In the event the contact information provided by 
your tribe in the application has changed, please contact your regional 
tribal liaison with the current information in order to expedite the 
grant award process. A TDD is available at 1-800-877-8339 (TDD/FIRS).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Approximately $10 million is available for 
FY 2014 and FY 2015 under the TTP. A total of 79 applications were 
received from 64 tribes in 20 states requesting $19.5 million, 
indicating significant demand for funds for public transportation 
projects. Project proposals were evaluated based on each applicant's 
responsiveness to the program evaluation criteria outlined in FTA's 
December 2014 NOFA. The FTA also took into consideration the current 
status of previously funded applicants. This included evaluating 
available prior year discretionary and formula balances; geographic 
balance and diversity, including regional balance based on tribal 
population; and support of the Ladders of Opportunity initiative. As a 
result, FTA is funding a total of 65 projects for 55 tribes in 18 
states. The projects selected in Table 1 provide funding for transit 
planning studies, capital and operating requests for existing, start-up 
expansion and replacement services. Funds must be used only for the 
specific purposes identified in Table 1. Allocations may be less than 
what the applicant requested and were capped at $300,000 to provide 
funding to all highly recommended and recommended proposals, however, 
planning projects were capped at $25,000. Recommended projects received 
the scalable amount provided by the applicant. Operating assistance for 
existing services was funded at one year. Tribes selected for 
competitive discretionary funding should work with their FTA regional 
office to finalize the grant application in FTA's Transit Award 
Management System (TrAMs) for the projects identified in the attached 
table to quickly obligate funds. In cases where the allocation amount 
is less than the proposer's requested amount, tribes should work with 
the regional office to ensure the funds are obligated for eligible 
aspects of the projects, and for the specific purpose intended as 
reflected in Table 1. A discretionary project identification number has 
been assigned to each project for tracking purposes, and must be used 
in the TrAMs application. For more information about TrAMs, please 
visit http://www.fta.dot.gov/16260_15769.html. The post award reporting 
requirements include submission of the Federal Financial Report (FFR) 
and Milestone Progress Report in TrAMs, and National Transit Database 
(NTD) reporting as appropriate (see FTA Circular 9040.1G).
    Tribes must continue to report to the NTD to be eligible for 
formula apportionment funds. To be considered in the FY 2016 formula 
apportionments, tribes should have submitted their reports to the NTD 
no later than August 31, 2015; voluntary reporting to the NTD is also 
encouraged. Additionally, to be considered for the FY 2017 formula 
apportionment funds, tribes need to submit their reports to the NTD no 
later than June 30, 2016. For tribes who have not reported before, 
please contact the NTD Operations Center in advance to get a reporting 
account for the NTD on-line data collection system. The Operation 
Center can be reached Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m.-7:00 p.m. (ET), by email 
[email protected] or by phone 1-888-252-0936. Tribes must comply with all 
applicable Federal statutes, regulations, executive orders, FTA 
circulars, and other Federal requirements in carrying out the project 
supported by the FTA grant. To assist tribes with understanding these 
requirements, FTA has conducted approximately nine Tribal Transit 
Technical Assistance Workshops, and expects to offer several workshops 
in FY 2016. FTA has also expanded its technical assistance to tribes 
receiving funds under this program. In FY15, FTA implemented the Tribal 

[[Page 8819]]

Technical Assistance Assessments initiative. Through these assessments, 
FTA collaborates with tribal transit leaders to review processes and 
identify areas in need of improvement and then assist with solutions to 
address these needs. FTA completed fifteen assessments in FY15, and 
expects to do a similar number in FY16. These assessments include 
discussions of compliance areas pursuant to the Master Agreement, a 
site visit, promising practices reviews, and technical assistance from 
FTA and its contractors. These workshops and assessments have received 
exemplary feedback From Tribal Transit Leaders, and have provided FTA 
with invaluable opportunities to learn more about Tribal transit 
leaders' perspectives, and honor the sovereignty of tribal nations. FTA 
will post information about upcoming workshops to its Web site and 
disseminate information about the reviews through its Regional offices. 
A list of Tribal Liaisons can be found on FTA's Web site at http://www.fta.dot.gov/13094_15845.html.
    Funds allocated in this announcement must be obligated in a grant 
by September 30, 2018. Tribes selected for competitive discretionary 
funding should work with their FTA regional tribal liaison to finalize 
the grant application in FTA's TrAMs. FTA plans to publish a notice of 
funding availability NOFA soliciting proposals for FY 2016 
discretionary funds in the coming months.
    The NOFA will establish and outline specific eligibility for 

Therese W. McMillan,
Acting Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2016-03539 Filed 2-19-16; 8:45 am]