Oregon’s U.S. Senators announced the grant this morning. Both Wyden and Merkely stressed how important public transit is for essential workers.
“Transit continues to support essential workers and provide access to vital services as our communities are dealing with the coronavirus crisis,” said Merkely. The county’s grant award totals $2,300,237 and will be distributed by the Federal Transit Administration.
“These federal resources heading to Josephine County will help support those quality-of-life issues, and I will keep battling to ensure Oregonians have solid access to mass transit throughout our state that is safe during the pandemic and afterwards,” said Wyden.
The department is funded through a payroll tax. Scott Chancey, the transit manager says because of this, the money will help in a big way.
“We do expect to see a reduction on those funds obviously since its based on payroll and unemployment went through the roof,” said Chancey.
According to the US Senators, the money will support operating, administrative and preventative maintenance costs to help the department through the pandemic. Chancey says it will also help them recoup funds lost as well.