NBC Montana: Montana receives $30 million in transportation funding

by NBC Montana Staff

MISSOULA, Mont. – Montana’s rural and urban public transportation will receive $30 million this year, according to Senator Jon Tester’s office.

This will add $19 million more to the $11 million partial-year transit funding the state received earlier this year.

Funding may be allocated to urban and rural transit systems, transit for seniors and people with disabilities, and buses and bus facilities.

The following was sent in a press release from Senator Jon Tester’s office:

As a part of the bipartisan infrastructure law, U.S. Senator Jon Tester today announced that he secured more than $30 million for Montana rural and urban public transit.

Earlier this year, Tester announced $11 million in partial-year transit funding for Montana-this new figure represents the total amount for Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22) designated for Montana public transportation in the infrastructure package.

“Efficient and affordable public transportation networks are an important driver of our state’s economy,” said Tester. “Thousands of Montanans rely on public transportation each day for work, school, or medical appointments, and investing in this critical infrastructure will keep Montanans connected and create good-paying jobs across the Treasure State.”

The funding secured by Tester can be used for transit systems in urban and rural areas, buses and bus facilities, and transit designed for seniors and people with disabilities. Funding will be distributed through the Federal Transit Administration to the Montana Department of Transportation, Tribal nations, and urban areas via formula-based grant programs.

A general breakdown of FY22 grant funding for public transit is below:

Rural areas apportionment – $14,591,137
Urbanized area formula funds – $7,615,674
Bus and bus facilities – $4,455,900
Public transit on Indian reservations – $2,307,451
Enhanced mobility for seniors – $1,397,482
Metropolitan & statewide planning – $768,810
Tester worked across the aisle for months to negotiate his bipartisan package with a group of five Republicans, four Democrats, and the White House, and he was the only member of Montana’s congressional delegation to vote for it.

Tester’s law is projected to create more than 800,000 American jobs and lower costs for businesses by making targeted investments that will strengthen our nation without raising taxes on working families.

Tester secured significant wins for Montana in the legislation, including $2.82 billion for Montana’s roads, highways and bridges; $2.5 billion to complete all authorized Indian water rights settlements; $1 billion to complete all authorized rural water projects through the Bureau of Reclamation; $65 billion to deploy broadband to areas across the country that lack internet access and make online connectivity affordable; and $3.37 billion to reduce wildfire risk nationwide, among others.

Tester also worked to ensure that all iron, steel, and construction materials used for these projects must be made in America.

A full list of Montana provisions in Tester’s bipartisan infrastructure law can be found HERE.