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Wednesday, April 29, 2015
By +Scott Leffler 
scott.leffler@eastniagarapost.com


Rob Ortt
ALBANY — New York state secured an additional $47.5 million in federal transit grant funds to enhance the mobility of senior citizens and people with disabilities, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Tuesday.

This funding is available to programs run by non-profit groups, local governments and other agencies that meet the unique needs of transit-dependent populations beyond the services provided by traditional sources of public transportation, as well as paratransit services in connection with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

“This $47 million will provide essential services to people with unique transportation needs, and ultimately improve their quality of life,” Gov. Cuomo said. “By supporting programs that offer transit alternatives to the elderly and people with disabilities, we are enhancing mobility and making a difference in the lives of New Yorkers across the state. I encourage all eligible organizations to apply for this funding today.”

The funding is administered by the New York State Department of Transportation on behalf of the Federal Transit Administration’s Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities Program.

State Sen. Rob Ortt is encouraging the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority (NFTA) to apply for a portion of the grant to help keep fixed bus routes and Paratransit services from being cut.  

This push follows Ortt's concerns about a bus route, and subsequently its Paratransit line, that’s in jeopardy of being discontinued.

Ortt, chairman of the Senate Committee on Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities, said, “I fought for the NFTA in Albany, and was able to help secure a total of $6.4 million, so that people with disabilities or impairments, who rely heavily on the Paratransit service, wouldn’t have to worry about how they would get to their next doctor’s appointment if their route were to be cut. Unfortunately, the money set aside in the budget wasn’t enough to avoid disruption, but upon eligibility, this transit funding program could be the solution to the NFTA’s problems.”



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