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GRANT PROCESS TO BEGIN FOR ACCESSIBLE VEHICLES SERVING SENIORS AND PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES

NEWARK, NJ, November 2, 2001--NJ TRANSIT will be applying for funding from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to purchase fully accessible vans and minibuses for the transportation of senior citizens and people with disabilities. Under the fiscal year 2002 FTA Section 5310 Grant Program, NJ TRANSIT is designated to coordinate and review all organization applications and submit a consolidated statewide application to the federal government.

"NJ TRANSIT remains dedicated to senior citizens and people with disabilities," said NJ TRANSIT Board Chairman and State Transportation Commissioner James Weinstein. "The FTA program allows the Corporation to purchase more accessible vehicles for use throughout the state of New Jersey."

"These vehicles will allow a variety of organizations to better aid senior citizens and customers with disabilities in need of transportation," said NJ TRANSIT Executive Director Jeffery A. Warsh. "New Jersey wants to be responsive to all residents and this grant process gives us the opportunity to do so."

The federal grant process is comprised of four steps. First, an agency and/or organization requests and completes an application. Second, NJ TRANSIT reviews the applications received. Based upon established criteria, a number of the applications are selected for inclusion in the federal grant. The third step is the federal review and grant approval process. Finally, after receiving the federal grant approval, NJ TRANSIT advertises for the vehicles. Once the vehicles are delivered, NJ TRANSIT will enter into a no-fee agreement with the approved applicants.

The process is open to all eligible private non-profit agencies and pre-certified public bodies. Organizations interested in applying or to find out more about the program, request an application in writing to:

NJ TRANSIT

Office of Service Contracts

Local Programs Support

One Penn Plaza East -- 7th Floor

Newark, NJ 07105-2246

Attn: Section 5310 Program

Requests for an application can also be faxed to 973-491-7367. Applications will be made available after November 20th and must be completed and returned to NJ TRANSIT by January 11, 2002.

Prospective applicants should be aware that insurance, fuel and maintenance costs are the responsibility of the applicant. In some cases a Commercial Drivers License (CDL) will be required to operate these vehicles. All vehicles purchased are equipped with diesel engines and lifts in order to accommodate mobility devices and diesel engines. The federal government also requires that operators with a CDL participate in a certified drug and alcohol-testing program.

Since 1981, NJ TRANSIT has purchased over 750 vehicles for organizations serving seniors and persons with disabilities throughout the State of New Jersey. It is anticipated that available funding for fiscal year 2002 will allow NJ TRANSIT to purchase approximately 45 new vans and minibuses.

NJ TRANSIT is the nation's largest statewide public transportation system providing bus, rail and light rail services for 383,900 daily commuters on 240 bus routes, two light rail lines and 12 commuter rail lines. It is the third largest transit system in the country with 163 rail stations, 26 light rail stations and more than 17,000 bus stops linking major points in New Jersey, New York and Philadelphia.

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