[Federal Register Volume 87, Number 183 (Thursday, September 22, 2022)]
[Pages 57971-57977]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2022-20511]

[[Page 57971]]



Federal Transit Administration

FY 2022 Competitive Funding Opportunity: Advanced Driver 
Assistance Systems (ADAS) for Transit Buses Demonstration and Automated 
Transit Bus Maintenance and Yard Operations Demonstration

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

ACTION: Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO).


SUMMARY: The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) announces the 
opportunity to apply for funding for transit bus automation 
demonstration projects under the Public Transportation Innovation 
Program. FTA is exploring the use of driving automation technologies in 
bus transit operations as described in the Strategic Transit Automation 
Research (STAR) Plan. As part of this research agenda, FTA is funding a 
number of demonstrations in real-world settings. These projects will 
create a testbed for study of technical issues, user acceptance, 
operational and maintenance costs, workforce training and transition, 
and institutional issues, and will further assess the needs for 
standards development.

DATES: Complete applications must be submitted electronically through 
the GRANTS.GOV ``APPLY'' function by 11:59 p.m. Eastern time on 
November 21, 2022.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Steve Mortensen, Senior ITS Engineer, 
202-493-0459, or [email protected].


Table of Contents

A. Program Description
B. Federal Award Information
C. Eligibility Information
D. Application and Submission Information
E. Application Review Information
F. Federal Award Administration Information
G. Federal Awarding Agency Contacts
H. Other Information

A. Program Description

    This Notice (Federal Assistance Listing: 20.530) seeks to fund 
demonstrations in two areas under the Public Transportation Innovation 
Program (49 U.S.C. 5312): (1) Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) 
for Transit Buses and (2) Automated Transit Bus Maintenance and Yard 
Operations--identified as demonstrations #1 and #3 respectively in the 
STAR Plan (available at https://www.transit.dot.gov/research-innovation/strategic-transit-automation-research-plan). These 
demonstrations address one of the primary goals of the STAR Plan, which 
is to demonstrate transit bus automation technologies in real-world 
settings. The demonstrations will help establish the feasibility of 
ADAS and Automated Transit Bus Maintenance and Yard Operations use 
cases and improve understanding of the impacts. A total of up to $6.5 
million is available for demonstration projects:
    1. $5 million for ADAS for Transit Buses; and
    2. $1.5 million for an initial phase of Automated Transit Bus 
Maintenance and Yard Operations and, subject to availability, 
additional funding may be provided to implement a second phase of the 
Automated Transit Bus Maintenance and Yard Operations Demonstration.

1. Program Overview

    Automation capabilities have grown rapidly in recent years and have 
changed the dialogue around all aspects of the surface transportation 
system. Transit bus automation could deliver many potential benefits, 
but transit agencies need additional research and practical information 
to make informed deployment decisions. To support the development and 
deployment of automated bus transit services and to advance transit 
readiness for automation and help move the transit industry forward, 
FTA developed the STAR Plan to outline FTA's research agenda on transit 
bus automation technologies. FTA's efforts aim to help determine the 
potential benefits and costs of transit bus automation, and to provide 
transit agencies with the resources, guidance, and tools they need to 
make informed deployment decisions. See FTA's Transit Automation 
Research website for more information (https://www.transit.dot.gov/automation-research).
    The demonstrations align with the Department's Innovation 
Principles and Strategic Goals: Safety, Economic Strength and Global 
Competitiveness, Equity, Climate and Sustainability, Transformation, 
and Organizational Excellence. ADAS has the potential to increase 
safety, provide a more accessible service, and/or improve driving and 
operational performance in terms of fuel economy, network efficiency, 
or other metrics. Automated maintenance and yard operations have the 
potential to increase efficiency in transit agency facilities and 
improve safety of operations within the yard for the transit agency 
    ADAS can assist bus operators, reduce collisions, and increase 
safety, including safety for vulnerable road users, and has the 
potential to provide a more accessible service (e.g., precision 
docking) and improve driving and operational performance in terms of 
fuel economy and network efficiency (e.g., smooth acceleration and 
deceleration, platooning, narrow lane/shoulder operations). Automated 
maintenance and yard operations can increase efficiency in transit 
agency maintenance and yard facilities (e.g., precision movement of 
fueling, service bays, and bus washing; automated parking and recall) 
and improve safety of operations within these facilities for the 
transit agency workforce (e.g., bus disinfection, injury reduction).

2. Research Scope

    Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) for Transit Buses 
Demonstration: FTA is seeking innovative projects to demonstrate 
market-ready or near market-ready ADAS technologies for use in revenue 
service to assess technology readiness and effectiveness, address 
technical issues, identify benefits and costs, and measure impacts. 
Demonstrations should be conducted with technologies and vehicles that 
are currently on the market and can be adapted or retrofitted to the 
purpose relatively quickly. Use cases may include smooth acceleration 
and deceleration; automatic emergency braking and pedestrian collision 
avoidance; curb avoidance; precision docking; narrow lane/shoulder 
operations; and platooning. Eligible activities include applicable 
systems engineering activities leading to the demonstration of ADAS use 
cases, such as requirements, architecture, and design development; 
equipment installation and integration; and pre-demonstration testing. 
Workforce engagement, training, and skills development activities 
related to the demonstration are also eligible. Projects will consist 
of a minimum 12-month operational demonstration in revenue service. 
Eligible projects must propose to demonstrate at least one ADAS use 
    Automation for Maintenance and Yard Operations Demonstration: FTA 
is seeking innovative projects to execute the first phase and, if 
funding becomes available, the second phase of Automation for 
Maintenance and Yard Operations demonstrations. Demonstrations should 
be conducted with vehicles that are broadly representative of those 
currently comprising the agency's fleet in terms of size and passenger 
capacity. Use cases

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may include precision movement for fueling/recharging, maintenance, 
disinfection, and/or bus wash; and automated parking and recall. 
Eligible activities include applicable systems engineering activities 
leading to the proof-of-concept demonstration, such as requirements, 
architecture, and design development; equipment installation and 
integration; and testing. Workforce engagement, training, and skills 
development activities related to the demonstration are also eligible.
    Phase 1 will result in one or more concepts of operations and 
limited proof of concept demonstrations, which must be conducted within 
12 months of project award. Phase 2 is envisioned to result in a 
longer-term (12-24 month) operational demonstration on a transit 
property and additional functionality (for example, expanding the 
number of equipped vehicles, locations within the yard, or expanded 
automation of functions). Applicants should identify the proposed 
location and duration of the Phase 1 proof-of-concept test, noting that 
an active bus yard is preferred, but offsite facilities and test tracks 
will be considered. Phase 2, if funded, should be located in an active 
bus yard. The Automation for Maintenance and Yard Operations 
Demonstration will assist the transit industry in assessing technology 
readiness and effectiveness, addressing technical issues, identifying 
benefits and costs, and measuring impacts of automated operations in 
transit agency bus yards and maintenance facilities.
    Details of the demonstrations will vary according to the applicants 
and projects selected, but all proposed projects should address a broad 
range of factors related to transit, such as:

 System performance, capabilities, limitations, and 
 Transit operations and maintenance
 Service quality
 Safety and security, including cybersecurity
 Human factors, including operator training and human-machine 
 Transit agency staff experience and acceptance
 Passenger experience, comfort, acceptance, and willingness to 
use, including passengers with disabilities
 Perceptions and acceptance by other road users, such as 
bicyclists and pedestrians
 Communication and equipment needs and costs
 Overall cost-effectiveness
 Input from labor

    Applicants are encouraged to elaborate on these factors and to 
identify and discuss any additional factors as appropriate in their 
application under this NOFO.
    The awardees of both demonstrations will be required to produce a 
report for publication at the end of the project, documenting the 
project approach, results, lessons learned, conclusions and potential 
next steps, and include training materials produced by the project. The 
awardees of both demonstrations will also be required to work with an 
FTA-selected independent evaluator to evaluate the respective projects.

3. Alignment With Policy Priorities

    These demonstrations are closely aligned with US DOT's Strategic 
Goals and Innovation Principles. Examples include the following:
     Improve Safety--ADAS technologies can include lane-
keeping, automatic emergency braking, pedestrian avoidance systems, and 
other collision avoidance capabilities; and automated maintenance and 
yard operations could reduce the number of conflicts between vehicles 
and maintenance staff, pedestrians, fixed objects, or other vehicles. 
Both demonstrations will help show the possible safety implications of 
these technologies.
     Serve Equity--ADAS includes precision docking 
technologies, which can make boarding and alighting easier and faster 
for all passengers, but particularly those with mobility challenges. 
Additionally, other ADAS technologies can help increase throughput, 
resulting in faster trips and improved reliability--generally, 
improvements in transit service have positive implications for equity 
     Reduce Climate Impacts--Certain automated vehicle 
technologies may have the potential to improve efficiency in ways that 
reduce overall fuel consumption, which accordingly result in a 
reduction in emissions. These demonstrations can provide valuable data 
to help quantify the possible fuel savings and emission reduction.
     Promote American Competitiveness and Economic 
Development--The transit industry benefits from Federal investment in 
new technologies, supporting domestic manufacturing as well as economic 
development through improvements to safety and mobility.
     Support Workers and Workforce--Safety improvements from 
ADAS could enhance operator safety. Automation of maintenance and yard 
operations can streamline the start and end of operator shifts, 
increasing safety and reducing the workload on operators. The 
participation of labor representatives in project design and 
implementation will enhance project learning with respect to safety and 
workforce impacts.

B. Federal Award Information

    Federal public transportation law (49 U.S.C. 5312) authorizes FTA's 
Public Transportation Innovation Program. Through this program, FTA may 
support research, development, demonstration, and deployment projects, 
and evaluation of research and technology of national significance to 
public transportation that the Secretary determines will improve public 
transportation service. FTA anticipates competitively selecting up to 
three projects for each demonstration for a total of up to $6.5 million 
of FTA Public Transportation Innovation Program demonstration funds.
    An applicant whose proposal is selected for funding will receive a 
cooperative agreement with FTA. FTA will have substantial involvement 
in the administration of the cooperative agreement. FTA's role includes 
the right to participate in decisions to redirect and reprioritize 
project activities, goals, and deliverables.
    FTA may, at its discretion, provide additional funds for selections 
made under this announcement or for additional meritorious 
applications. FTA may cap the amount a single recipient or State may 
receive as part of the selection process. Due to funding limitations, 
applicants that are selected for funding may receive less than the 
amount requested. Only applications from eligible recipients for 
eligible activities will be considered for funding.
    Projects under this competition are for demonstration projects, 
including documentation and evaluation efforts and, as such, FTA 
Circular 6100.1E, ``Research, Technical Assistance and Training Program 
Guidance'' (available at https://www.fta.dot.gov/regulations-and-guidance/fta-circulars/research-technical-assistance-and-training-program), guidance will apply in administering the program.

C. Eligibility Information

1. Eligible Applicants

    Eligible applicants under this Notice include the following:
     Public transit agencies;
     State/local government entities;
     Metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs);
     Federally recognized Indian tribes; and
     Institutions of higher education, particularly those with 
Minority Serving Institution status.

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    Applications must clearly identify the eligible applicant and all 
project partners on the project team. Eligible project partners under 
this program may include, but are not limited to:
     Bus manufacturers;
     Technology system suppliers, developers, and integrators;
     Operators of transportation services, such as employee 
shuttle services, airport connector services, university transportation 
systems, or parking and tolling authorities;
     State or local government entities;
     Labor unions and other workforce representatives; and
     Other organizations, including consultants, research 
consortia, and not-for-profit industry organizations.
    In the application, eligible applicants are encouraged to identify 
one or more project partners with a substantial interest and 
involvement in the project activities or objectives to participate in 
the implementation of the project.
    If an application that involves such a partnership is selected for 
funding, the competitive selection process will be deemed to satisfy 
the requirement for a competitive procurement under 49 U.S.C. 5325(a) 
for the named entities. Applicants are advised that any changes from 
the proposed partnership after selection will require FTA's written 
approval, must be consistent with the scope of the approved project, 
and may require competitive procurement unless an exception applies.
    To be considered eligible, applicants must be able to demonstrate 
the requisite legal, financial, and technical capabilities to receive 
and administer Federal funds under this program.

2. Cost Sharing or Matching

    The maximum Federal share of project costs under this program is 
limited to 80 percent. Applicants may seek a lower Federal 
contribution. The applicant must provide the non-Federal share of the 
net project cost in cash, or in-kind, and must document in its 
application the source of the non-Federal match. Eligible sources of 
non-Federal match are detailed in FTA Circular 6100.1E.

3. Eligible Projects

    Eligible activities for the ADAS for Transit Buses Demonstration 
include applicable systems engineering activities leading to the 
demonstration of ADAS use cases, such as requirements, architecture, 
and design development; equipment installation and integration; and 
pre-demonstration testing. Workforce engagement, training, and skills 
development activities related to the demonstration are also eligible. 
Projects will consist of a minimum 12-month operational demonstration 
in revenue service. Eligible projects must propose to demonstrate at 
least one ADAS use case.
    Eligible activities for the Automation for Maintenance and Yard 
Operations Demonstration include applicable systems engineering 
activities leading to the proof-of-concept demonstration, such as 
requirements, architecture, and design development; equipment 
installation and integration; and testing. Workforce engagement, 
training, and skills development activities related to the 
demonstration are also eligible.
    Projects will not include the demonstration, deployment, or 
evaluation of a vehicle that is in revenue service unless the project 
makes significant technological advancements in the vehicle.

D. Application and Submission Information

1. Address To Request Application

    Applications must be submitted electronically through GRANTS.GOV. 
General information for submitting applications through GRANTS.GOV can 
be found at http://www.transit.dot.gov/howtoapply along with specific 
instructions for the forms and attachments required for submission. A 
complete proposal submission consists of two forms and an attachment. 
Forms are a standard form 424 (SF-424), ``Application for Federal 
Assistance,'' which can be downloaded from GRANTS.GOV and the 
supplemental form for the FY22 Advanced Driver Assistance Systems 
(ADAS) for Transit Buses Demonstration and Automated Transit Bus 
Maintenance and Yard Operations Demonstration, which can be downloaded 
from the FTA website at https://www.transit.dot.gov/notices-funding/fiscal-year-2022-advanced-driver-assistance-systems-adas-transit-buses. 
The funding opportunity ID is FTA-2022-015-TRI-STAR. The attachment 
shall provide the project approach and proposed scope of work.

2. Content and Form of Application Submission

    A completed application consists of the SF-424, the supplemental 
form, and the project approach and proposed scope of work attachment. 
The application must include responses to all sections of the SF-424 
Application for Federal Assistance and the supplemental form, unless 
indicated as optional. The supplemental form and required project 
approach and proposed scope of work attachment must be added to the 
``Attachments'' section of the SF-424. The project approach and 
proposed scope of work attachment, limited to 15 pages, should be a 
short project proposal that describes the following:
     Project background;
     Technical information including proposed impact and 
     Project approach including major tasks and milestones/
deliverables, overall workflow and timeline, roles and 
responsibilities, anticipated project risks and mitigation strategies, 
knowledge transfer activities, and proposed costs/budget; and the
     Team organizational capacity and staff experience.
    FTA will accept only one supplemental form and project approach and 
proposed scope of work attachment per SF-424 submission. Applicants may 
also attach additional supporting information and other materials or 
information relevant to the demonstration such as letters of support 
from key stakeholders, which are not subject to the 15-page limit of 
the project approach and proposed scope of work attachment.
    Any supporting documentation must be described and referenced by 
file name in the appropriate response section of the supplemental form, 
or it may not be reviewed. The information on the supplemental form 
will be used to determine applicant and project eligibility for the 
    Information such as applicant name, Federal amount requested, and 
local match amount may be requested on both the SF-424 and supplemental 
form. Applicants must fill in all fields unless stated otherwise on the 
forms. If information is copied into the supplemental form from another 
source, applicants should verify that pasted text is fully captured on 
the supplemental form and has not been truncated by the character 
limits built into the form. Applicants should use both the ``Check 
Package for Errors'' and the ``Validate Form'' validation buttons on 
both forms to check all required fields on the forms and ensure that 
the Federal and local amounts specified are consistent.
    The SF-424 Application for Federal Assistance and the supplemental 
form will prompt applicants for the required information, including:
    1. Applicant name.
    2. Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) number.
    3. Key contact information (including name, address, email address, 
and phone).
    4. Congressional district(s) where project will take place.
    5. Project information (including title, and an executive summary).

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    6. A description of the project and how it will (a) design, test, 
and evaluate the relevant technologies and their practical application; 
and (b) document results and share lessons learned in a format suitable 
for publication.
    7. Information on any project partners, their role, and anticipated 
    8. A description of the technical, legal, and financial capacity of 
the applicant and partners.
    9. A detailed project budget, specifying Federal and local share 
when applicable.
    10. A detailed project timeline.
    Refer to Section E.1 for information on the application review 

3. Unique Entity Identifier and System for Award Management (SAM)

    Each applicant is required to: (1) be registered in SAM before 
submitting an application; (2) provide a valid unique entity identifier 
in its application; and (3) continue to maintain an active SAM 
registration with current information at all times during which the 
applicant has an active Federal award or an application or plan under 
consideration by FTA. FTA may not make an award until the applicant has 
complied with all applicable unique entity identifier and SAM 
requirements. If an applicant has not fully complied with the 
requirements by the time FTA is ready to make an award, FTA may 
determine that the applicant is not qualified to receive an award and 
use that determination as a basis for making a Federal award to another 
applicant. These requirements do not apply if the applicant has an 
exception approved by FTA or the U.S. Office of Management and Budget 
under 2 CFR 25.110(c) or (d). SAM registration takes approximately 3-5 
business days, but FTA recommends allowing ample time, up to several 
weeks, for completion of all steps. For additional information on 
obtaining a unique entity identifier, please visit https://www.sam.gov/.

4. Submission Dates and Times

    Project applications must be submitted electronically through 
GRANTS.GOV by 11:59 p.m. Eastern time on November 21, 2022. GRANTS.GOV 
attaches a time stamp to each application at the time of submission. 
Applications submitted after the deadline will only be considered if 
lateness was due to extraordinary circumstances not under the 
applicant's control. Mail and fax submissions will not be accepted.
    FTA urges applicants to submit applications at least 72 hours prior 
to the due date to allow time to receive the validation messages and to 
correct any problems that may have caused a rejection notification. 
GRANTS.GOV scheduled maintenance and outage times are announced on the 
GRANTS.GOV website. Deadlines will not be extended due to scheduled 
website maintenance.
    Within 48 hours after submitting an electronic application, the 
applicant should receive an email message from GRANTS.GOV with 
confirmation of successful transmission to GRANTS.GOV. If a notice of 
failed validation or incomplete materials is received, the applicant 
must address the reason for the failed validation, as described in the 
email notice, and resubmit before the submission deadline. If making a 
resubmission for any reason, include all original attachments 
regardless of which attachments were updated and check the box on the 
supplemental form indicating this is a resubmission.
    Applicants are encouraged to begin the process of registration on 
the GRANTS.GOV site well in advance of the submission deadline. 
Registration is a multi-step process, which may take several weeks to 
complete before an application can be submitted. Registered applicants 
may still be required to take steps to keep their registration up to 
date before submissions can be made successfully: (1) registration in 
SAM is renewed annually, and (2) persons making submissions on behalf 
of the Authorized Organization Representative (AOR) must be authorized 
in GRANTS.GOV by the AOR to make submission.

5. Funding Restrictions

    Refer to Section C.3., Eligible Projects, for information on 
activities that are allowable. Allowable direct and indirect expenses 
must be consistent with the Governmentwide Uniform Administrative 
Requirements and Cost Principles (2 CFR part 200) and FTA Circular 
    Funds available under this NOFO cannot be used to reimburse 
applicants for otherwise eligible expenses incurred prior to FTA 
issuing pre-award authority for selected projects.

6. Other Submission Requirements

    Applicants are encouraged to identify scaled funding options in 
case funding is not available to fund a project at the full requested 
amount. If an applicant indicates that a project is scalable, the 
applicant must provide an appropriate minimum funding amount that will 
fund an eligible project that achieves the objectives of the program 
and meets all relevant program requirements. The applicant must provide 
a clear explanation of how the project budget would be affected by a 
reduced award. FTA may award a lesser amount regardless of whether a 
scalable option is provided.
    All applications must be submitted via the GRANTS.GOV website. FTA 
does not accept applications on paper, by fax machine, email, or other 
means. For information on application submission requirements, please 
see Section D.1., Address to Request Application.

E. Application Review Information

1. Criteria

    Projects will be evaluated on the project approach and proposed 
scope of work attachment and responses provided in the supplemental 
form. Additional information may be provided to support the responses; 
however, any additional documentation must be directly referenced on 
the supplemental form, including the file name where the additional 
information can be found. FTA will evaluate applications based on the 
criteria described below.
a. Project Impact and Outcomes
    FTA seeks projects that increase the transit community's knowledge 
about the feasibility, effectiveness, benefits, and costs of driving 
automation technologies for transit buses. Strong applications will 
present a clear plan for how these factors will be identified and 
measured. Under this criterion, FTA will prioritize projects that 
demonstrate a clear understanding and presentation of the technology to 
be demonstrated, its maturity today, the expected maturity at the 
conclusion of the project, and potential impacts on the workforce as a 
result of technology implementation. Projects that address transit 
applications that are generalizable across agencies and geographies and 
that are scalable to wider and expanded use will be given priority for 
funding. This includes an emphasis on commonly available commercial 
products rather than custom-built solutions, wherever possible, as well 
as consideration of the project's applicability to other locations and 
types of transit buses and service models.
b. Project Approach
    Applications should present a realistic and detailed description of 
the overall project workflow and the content of each task or step 
mentioned in the workflow, including any major dependencies and 
milestones/deliverables. Applicants should clearly

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describe how they plan to engage the workforce, develop and administer 
needed training, and assess the effectiveness of that training. They 
should clearly delineate project roles and responsibilities and present 
information on potential project risks and how the risks will be 
mitigated. Applicants should include a proposed list of milestones and/
or deliverables and timelines and describe how these deliverables will 
be shared with peers and the public. At a minimum, the final report 
will be published and posted on the FTA website, but applicants are 
encouraged to identify potential conferences, journals, etc. which may 
be appropriate. The project budget should be supported by documentation 
that allows FTA to assess the source and credibility of the estimates. 
The source of local matching funds should be clearly identified and any 
potential restrictions or limitations of those funds should be 
discussed. FTA may consider projects that will provide more than the 
minimum 20 percent local match more favorably, as this allows FTA to 
leverage its limited funding to support a greater number of projects.
c. Organizational Capacity and Staff Experience
    The applicant should discuss successful completion of similar or 
relevant projects. Additionally, the application should note the staff 
who will be involved in the project, their qualifications, and how the 
applicant will ensure they will have enough time to devote to the 
d. Technical, Legal, and Financial Capacity
    Applicant must demonstrate the financial and organizational 
capacity and managerial experience to successfully oversee and 
implement this project. FTA may review relevant oversight assessments 
and records to determine whether there are any outstanding legal, 
technical, or financial issues with the applicant that would affect the 
outcome of the proposed project. Applicants with outstanding legal, 
technical, or financial compliance issues from an FTA compliance review 
or Federal Transit Administration grant-related Single Audit finding 
must explain how corrective actions will mitigate negative impacts on 
the proposed project.
    For applications that include named project partners, FTA will also 
consider the technical, legal, and financial capacity of the proposed 

2. Review and Selection Process

    A technical evaluation committee will evaluate applications based 
on the evaluation criteria. Members of the technical evaluation 
committee may request additional information from applicants, if 
necessary. Based on the review of the technical evaluation committee, 
the FTA Administrator will determine the final selection for program 
    After applying the evaluation criteria, in support of the 
President's January 20, 2021, Executive Order 13900 on Protecting 
Public Health and the Environment and Restoring Science to Tackle the 
Climate Crisis, the selecting official will consider applications that 
may provide other air quality benefits as part of the application 
review. Applicants should identify any nonattainment or maintenance 
areas under the Clean Air Act in the proposed service area. 
Nonattainment or maintenance areas should be limited to the following 
applicable National Ambient Air Quality Standards criteria pollutants: 
carbon monoxide, ozone, and particulate matter 2.5 and 10. The U.S. 
Environmental Protection Agency's Green Book (available at https://www.epa.gov/green-book) is a publicly available resource for 
nonattainment and maintenance area data. This consideration will 
further the goals of the Executive Order, including the goal to 
prioritize environment justice (EJ), and historically disadvantaged 
    In support of Executive Order 14008, Tackling the Climate Crisis at 
Home and Abroad, FTA will give priority consideration to applications 
that create significant community benefits relating to the environment, 
including those projects that address greenhouse gas emissions and 
climate change impacts. FTA encourages applicants to demonstrate 
whether they have considered climate change and environmental justice 
in terms of the transportation planning process or anticipated design 
components with outcomes that address climate change (e.g., resilience 
or adaptation measures). The application should describe what specific 
climate change or environmental justice activities have been 
incorporated, including whether a project supports a Climate Action 
Plan, whether an equitable development plan has been prepared, and 
whether tools such as EPA's EJSCREEN have been applied in project 
planning. The application should also describe specific and direct ways 
the project will mitigate or reduce climate change impacts including 
any components that reduce emissions, promote energy efficiency, 
incorporate electrification or low emission or zero emission vehicle 
infrastructure, increase resiliency, or recycle or redevelop existing 
    In addition, FTA will consider benefits to EJ communities when 
reviewing applications received under this program. Applicants should 
identify any EJ populations located within the proposed service area 
and describe anticipated benefits to that population(s) should the 
applicant receive a grant under this program. A formal EJ analysis that 
is typically included in transportation planning or environmental 
reviews is not requested. Among the factors, in determining the 
allocation of program funds FTA may consider geographic diversity, 
diversity in the size of the grantees receiving funding, or the 
applicant's receipt of other competitive awards. Respectively, FTA will 
evaluate the proposals to determine the extent that the proposed 
project will address affordable housing needs, provide equitable 
housing choices for environmental justice populations, and avoid 
displacement of low-income households.
    In support of Executive Order 14008, and consistent with OMB's 
Interim Guidance for the Justice40 Initiative, Historically 
Disadvantaged Communities include (a) certain qualifying census tracts, 
(b) any Tribal land, or (c) any territory or possession of the United 
States. DOT is providing a mapping tool to assist applicants in 
identifying whether a project is located in a Historically 
Disadvantaged Community: (https://usdot.maps.arcgis.com/apps/dashboards/d6f90dfcc8b44525b04c7ce748a3674a). Use of this map tool is 
optional; applicants may provide an image of the map tool outputs, or 
alternatively, consistent with OMB's Interim Guidance, applicants can 
supply quantitative, demographic data of their ridership demonstrating 
the percentage of their ridership that meets the criteria described in 
Executive Order 14008 for disadvantage. Examples of Disadvantaged 
Communities that an applicant could address using geographic or 
demographic information include low income, high and/or persistent 
poverty, high unemployment and underemployment, racial and ethnic 
residential segregation, linguistic isolation, or high housing cost 
burden and substandard housing. Additionally, in support of the 
Justice40 Initiative, the applicant also should provide evidence of 
strategies that the applicant has used in the planning process to seek 
out and

[[Page 57976]]

consider the needs of those traditionally disadvantaged and underserved 
by existing transportation systems. For technical assistance using the 
mapping tool, please contact [email protected].

3. Integrity and Performance Review

    Prior to making an award, FTA is required to review and consider 
any information about the applicant that is in the Federal Awardee 
Performance and Integrity Information System (FAPIIS), accessible 
through SAM. An applicant may review and comment on any information 
about itself that a Federal awarding agency previously entered. FTA 
will consider any comments by the applicant, in addition to the other 
information in the designated integrity and performance system, in 
making a judgment about the applicant's and proposed partners' 
integrity, business ethics, and record of performance under Federal 
awards when completing the review of risk posed by applicants as 
described in the Office of Management and Budget's Uniform Requirements 
for Federal Awards (2 CFR 200.206).

F. Federal Award Administration Information

1. Federal Award Notices

    FTA will announce the final project selections on the FTA website. 
Due to funding limitations, applicants that are selected for funding 
may receive less than the amount originally requested. In those cases, 
applicants must be able to demonstrate that the proposed projects are 
still viable and can be completed with the amount awarded.

2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements

a. Pre-Award Authority
    At the time the project selections are announced, FTA may extend 
pre-award authority for the selected projects. There is no blanket pre-
award authority for these projects before announcement. FTA will issue 
specific guidance to recipients regarding pre-award authority at the 
time of selection. FTA does not provide pre-award authority for 
competitive funds until projects are selected, and even then, there are 
Federal requirements that must be met before costs are incurred. For 
more information about FTA's policy on pre-award authority, please see 
the most recent Apportionments, Allocations and Program Information 
Notice at https://www.transit.dot.gov/regulations/federal-register-documents/2022-09143.
    Pre-award authority is subject to FTA approval and is only 
available for costs incurred after the announcement of project 
selections on FTA's website. A request for pre-award authority must be 
submitted to FTA and approved in writing in advance of any costs being 
b. Cooperative Agreement Requirements
    If selected, awardees will apply for a cooperative agreement 
through TrAMS and adhere to the customary FTA grant requirements of 49 
U.S.C. 5312, Public Transportation Innovation, including those of FTA 
Circular 6100.1E. Successful applicants must be prepared to submit a 
complete statement of work and application in TrAMS within 45 days of 
notification of award, and should include any goals, targets, and 
indicators in the TrAMS application Executive Summary. Technical 
assistance regarding these requirements will be available from the 
appointed FTA project manager who will be identified upon project 
c. Safety Requirements
    Applicants must comply with applicable safety requirements, 
including those administered by the National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration (NHTSA) and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration 
(FMCSA). Specifically, the proposed project must comply with applicable 
Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) and Federal Motor 
Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR). If the vehicles do not comply, the 
application should either (1) show that the vehicles and their proposed 
operations are within the scope of an exemption or waiver that has 
already been granted by NHTSA, FMCSA, or both agencies, or (2) directly 
address whether the project will require exemptions or waivers from the 
FMVSS, FMCSR, or any other regulation and, if the project will require 
exemptions or waivers, present a plan for obtaining them.
d. Made in America
    All capital procurements must meet FTA's Buy America requirements 
(49 U.S.C. 5323(j) and 49 CFR part 661) and the Build America, Buy 
America Act's domestic preference requirements for infrastructure 
projects (Sec. Sec.  70901-70927 of the Infrastructure Investment and 
Jobs Act, Pub. L. 117-58), which together require that all iron, steel, 
manufactured goods, and construction materials be produced in the 
United States, and set minimum domestic content and final assembly 
requirements for rolling stock. The U.S. Department of Transportation 
issued a temporary public interest waiver for construction materials 
for a period of 180 days beginning on May 14, 2022 and expiring on 
November 10, 2022.
    Any proposal that will require a waiver of any domestic preference 
standard must identify the items for which a waiver will be sought in 
the application. Applicants should not proceed with the expectation 
that waivers will be granted.
e. Disadvantaged Business Enterprises
    Recipients receiving planning, capital, or operating assistance 
that will award prime contracts exceeding $250,000 in FTA funds in a 
Federal fiscal year must comply with the U.S. Department of 
Transportation's Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) program 
regulations (49 CFR part 26). Applicants should expect to include any 
funds awarded, excluding those to be used for vehicle procurements, in 
setting their overall DBE goal.
f. Standard Assurances
    If an applicant receives an award, the applicant must assure that 
it will comply with all applicable Federal statutes, regulations, 
executive orders, directives, FTA circulars, and other Federal 
administrative requirements in carrying out any project supported by 
the FTA award. The applicant acknowledges that it will be under a 
continuing obligation to comply with the terms and conditions of the 
agreement issued for its project with FTA. The applicant understands 
that Federal laws, regulations, policies, and administrative practices 
might be modified from time to time and may affect the implementation 
of the project. The most recent Federal requirements will apply to the 
project unless FTA issues a written determination otherwise. The 
applicant must submit the most recent FTA Certifications and Assurances 
before receiving an award if it does not have current certifications on 
g. External Communications
    Recipients must communicate with their FTA project manager prior to 
engaging in any external communications regarding their project. This 
includes any work developing news or magazine stories with media 
organizations, including print, video, online, or otherwise. 
Additionally, the FTA project manager must be notified if project 
information, including results and metrics, will be shared during a 
webinar or other presentation open to the public produced either by the 
recipient itself or another organization. Recipients should consult 
with their FTA project manager at the beginning of their agreement to 
discuss and plan any

[[Page 57977]]

external communications about their project.
h. Data Access and Data Sharing
    FTA seeks to improve public transportation for America's 
communities by sharing digital data or source code collected or 
developed through its research with the public. This allows research 
organizations, transit agencies, and other stakeholders to learn from 
and expand upon the insights developed from FTA-funded research. An 
award made pursuant to this NOFO will be subject to the latest version 
of FTA's Master Agreement (available at https://www.transit.dot.gov/funding/grantee-resources/sample-fta-agreements/fta-grant-agreements), 
including Section 17 Patent Rights and Section 18 Rights in Data and 
    All work conducted under this award must follow the Department data 
policies outlined in the DOT Public Access Plan at: https://ntl.bts.gov/public-access/how-comply, including the development and 
approval of a Data Management Plan (DMP). Recipients are required to 
include these obligations in any sub-awards or other related funding 
    A DMP is a document that describes how recipients plan to handle 
digital datasets, software, or code generated over the course of a 
research project pursuant to Federal and Departmental requirements. A 
DMP must be provided as a condition of receiving FTA funds under the 
Section 5312 Research Program and should adequately identify: (1) the 
data to be collected, (2) how the data will further the goals of this 
effort, (3) how the data will be made accessible, and (4) how the data 
will be stored. DMPs can be updated over time if the scope of the 
project or the type of data that will be collected changes. FTA staff 
is available to assist recipients with complying with public data 
access requirements.
    FTA expects recipients to remove confidential business information 
(CBI) and Personally Identifiable Information (PII) before providing 
public access to project data. Recipients must ensure the appropriate 
data are accessible to FTA or the public for a minimum of five years 
after the award period of performance expires.
    Recipients must make available to the Department copies of all work 
developed in performance of a project funded under this announcement, 
including but not limited to software and data. Data rights shall be in 
accordance with 2 CFR 200.315, Intangible property.
i. Independent Evaluation
    Projects funded under this announcement will be subject to 
evaluation by an independent evaluator selected by FTA. Recipients will 
be required to coordinate with the independent evaluator to assist in 
developing an evaluation plan and collecting, storing and managing data 
required to fulfill that evaluation plan.
j. Software Provisions
    Any standards, guidance, tools or software developed as a part of 
this solicitation will be subject to provisions of FTA's Master 
Agreement and evaluated for the potential to be shared for use by 
public transportation agencies.

3. Reporting

    Post-award reporting requirements include the electronic submission 
of Federal Financial Reports and Milestone Progress Reports in TrAMS. 
Documentation is required for payment. Additional progress reporting to 
the FTA project manager may be required. The recipient may be expected 
to participate in events or peer networks related to the goals and 
objectives of the program.
    The Federal Financial Accountability and Transparency Act (FFATA) 
requires data entry at the FFATA Sub Award Reporting System (http://www.FSRS.gov) for all sub-awards and sub-contracts issued for $30,000 
or more, as well as addressing executive compensation for both award 
recipients and sub-award organizations.
    As part of completing the annual certifications and assurances 
required of FTA grant recipients, a successful applicant must report on 
the suspension or debarment status of itself and its principals.
    If the award recipient's active grants, cooperative agreements, and 
procurement contracts from all Federal awarding agencies exceeds 
$10,000,000 for any period of time during the period of performance of 
an award made pursuant to this Notice, the recipient must comply with 
the Recipient Integrity and Performance Matters reporting requirements 
described in Appendix XII to 2 CFR part 200.
    Note that vehicle demonstration projects are not considered regular 
and continuing, and so data on ridership and vehicle operations for 
demonstration projects are not reported to the National Transit 
Database (NTD). The cost of the project may be reportable as a 
reconciling item by full reporters. Recipients should consult their NTD 
Validation Analyst on proper reporting of demonstration projects.

G. Federal Awarding Agency Contacts

    For further information concerning this notice, please contact 
Steve Mortensen in the FTA Office of Research, Demonstration and 
Innovation, by phone at 202-493-0459, or by email at 
[email protected]. A TDD is available for individuals who are 
deaf or hard of hearing at 800-877-8339. In addition, FTA will post 
answers to questions and requests for clarifications on FTA's website 
at https://www.transit.dot.gov/grant-programs/advanced-driver-assistance-systems-adas-transit-buses-demonstration-and-automated. To 
ensure applicants receive accurate information about eligibility, 
applicants are encouraged to contact FTA directly, rather than through 
intermediaries or third parties, with questions. FTA staff may also 
conduct briefings on the competitive grants selection and award process 
upon request.
    For issues with GRANTS.GOV, please contact GRANTS.GOV by phone at 
1-800-518-4726 or by email at [email protected].

H. Other Information

    This program is not subject to Executive Order 12372, 
``Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs.''

Nuria I. Fernandez,
[FR Doc. 2022-20511 Filed 9-21-22; 8:45 am]