FTA: $220 million available for ferry grants

Written by Nick Blenkey
Pete Buttigieg on RAISE grants

U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg: “In the years ahead, these vessels will delive “After decades of underinvestment, the condition of America’s infrastructure is now finally getting better instead of worse.”

Back in January, the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) announced the award of more than $384.4 million in federal funding for ferries programs. Today, the agency set the process for the next round of ferry grants in motion, announcing the availability of $220 million to support and modernize passenger ferry service in rural and urban communities across the U.S.

Across the country, there are approximately three million ferry riders each month, notes FTA.

“For many Americans, ferries are the best way get to work, go to school, or reach a hospital, particularly in island communities and Alaska native villages,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “Everyone ought to have access to affordable, reliable transportation options, and thanks to President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, we are taking an important step to improve ferry service across the country.”

Two ferry grant programs are included in the Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) released today: the Passenger Ferry Program and the Ferry Service for Rural Communities Program.

The Passenger Ferry Program supports capital projects to buy, replace, or modernize passenger ferries, terminals, and related equipment. For Fiscal Year (FY) 2023, $50.1 million is available, of which $5 million is set aside specifically for low- or zero-emission ferries and related facilities/equipment.

The Ferry Service for Rural Communities Program is a competitive grant program created by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to ensure essential ferry service in rural communities. The program provides capital, planning, and operating assistance to support or expand ferry services in rural areas. For Fiscal Year 2023, $170 million is available.

Instructions for applying and eligibility information can be found on FTA’s website and in GRANTS.GOV for Passenger Ferry and Ferry Service for Rural Communities. Complete proposals must be submitted electronically through GRANTS.GOV by July 17, 2023.

FTA will host a webinar (passcode 870207) on Wednesday, May 31, at 2:30 p.m. ET to discuss the requirements for funding, application eligibility and criteria, and the submission process. Participants will learn more about the Passenger Ferry and Ferry Service for Rural Communities programs and how to apply. The webinar will include an opportunity to ask questions.

  • Download the Notice of Funding Opportunity HERE
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