Metro Magazine

SEP-OCT 2014

Magazine serving the bus and rail transit & motorcoach operations since 1904

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Page 85 of 143 /// (800) 387-4800 Espar... Because Off-the-Rack Just Isn't Good Enough Hydronic M-12 42,000 BTU Hydronic D5 17,000 BTU Hydronic LII 122,000 BTU Contact an Espar Tailor Near You And Get Your Fleet Measured for New Heaters Sales Rep Espar Climate Systems a member of the Eberspächer group of companies 82 < m ETRO m AGAZINE SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2014 dollars traditionally awarded annually to state and local transportation providers, and ensure that taxpayers' transportation dollars are wisely spent. Te Administra- tion has been committed to streamlining and consolidating core programs to im- prove efciency and become even more responsive to local transportation pri- orities — while saving money along the way. Specifcally, we recognize it is vitally important to strike the right balance be- tween good stewardship and the need to advance capital transportation projects in a reasonable timeframe. We have nev- er lost sight of the fact that the New Starts program brings taxpayer dollars back to communities to improve the quality of life in neighborhood after neighborhood, and all along Main Street. We must be re- sponsible stewards of those dollars. That is why, in recent years, FTA has taken additional steps to improve the New Starts program's accountability, to streamline its administration, and to al- locate resources to projects that truly make a difference. MAP-21 places new emphasis on improving the efciency of grant program operations through con- solidation of some programs; streamlin- ing some grant processes; and renewing focus on improved public transportation access, operating conditions and safety. We've also streamlined some aspects of the vitally important environmental re- view process for capital transit projects seeking federal funds, to help accelerate the development and delivery of capital transportation projects. HOW SHOULD OUR NATION ADDRESS THE 'TRANSPORTATION INFRASTRUCTURE DEFICIT'? We ne e d bipar tisan supp or t for a long-term transportation funding bill in this country. We can't keep kicking the can down the road with short-term funding extensions that really are just a Band-Aid on our infrastructure defcit. Without long-term, predictable fund- ing from the federal government, local leaders may lose the confdence needed to pursue a bigger vision, and instead, turn to less ambitious projects that fill immediate needs, without adequate- ly preparing for the challenges and op- portunities of growth. Many states — like Wyoming, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Virginia—have begun to take action with voter-approved referendums and other legislative action to direct more taxpayer dollars to transportation proj- ects because they simply cannot wait for Congress to bring more resources to the table. WHAT STEPS HAS FTA TAKEN TO OPERATE MORE EFFICIENTLY AND HELP COMMUNITIES BUILD PROJECTS IN LESS TIME? To preserve the integrity of the New Starts program — FTA's flagship capital investment grant program — as its im- pact grows around the nation, we have worked diligently to improve its capaci- ty to oversee and manage the billions of Q&A: THERESE MCMILLAN

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