Star Metro to Receive $3.7 Million in COVID Relief Funds

Star Metro to Receive $3.7 Million in COVID Relief Funds

At the City Commission meeting on April 7th, 2021, elected officials will look to approve the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021 (CRRSAA) from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to aid public transportation in Tallahassee.

The CRRSAA was signed on December 27th, 2020 to support the transit industry during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Act directs recipients to make payroll and operational needs first priority unless it is expressed to the FTA that there were no layoffs or furloughs that occurred because of the pandemic.

Approval of the Act would consist of allocations of two separate apportionments that represent Sections 5307 and 5310 of the CRRSAA: $3,776,435 and $32,931, respectively. Sections 5307 and 5310 provide authorization and direction for StarMetro staff to disburse the funding for operating expenses and capital assistance as well as execute all documentation related to expending the funds.

According to the Commission, operating expenses that are eligible under the CRRSAA include maintaining transit services, lost revenue, purchase of personal protective equipment and supplies, as well as paying for administrative leave for transit personnel due to COVID.

As far as capital expenses, the funds from the Act can be used to upgrade or purchase hardware and software used to support transit services along with customer and emergency communication technology that could range from buses to mobile phone apps.

The allocation receipts and expenditures of the grant generally aligns the FY 2020-2024 Strategic Plan that includes Objective 4E that is intended to “ensure public transit is accessible, efficient, and equitable” as well as Objective 3D-2 that states that the City will increase its yearly grant awards by 5%. Approval has no fiscal impact meaning the Act is 100% federally funded and does not require the City to match expenses made by the FTA and the CRRSAA.

6 Responses to "Star Metro to Receive $3.7 Million in COVID Relief Funds"

  1. Casey – Maybe you don’t comprehend what reporters are supposed to do. Let me give you some of the pertinent questions that should have been answered in your story:
    How much of the money is going toward maintaining transit service?
    How much of the money is going toward filling the financial gap resulting from lower ridership due to the pandemic?
    How much money is being spent on the cost of the administrative leave that was granted to employees?
    Additionally saying that money “can” be spent on the purchase of hardware and software is not the same as reporting how much of that money will actually be spent on those items. Readers don’t need to know what “can” be done with their money – they need to know what it actually will be spent on.
    Please go beyond rehashing press releases and provide actual details regarding the use of these important public resources.
    Hopefully you will learn how to provide reports that go beyond just skimming the surface.
    Be well –

    BadFedRes

  2. The misuse of tax dollars allocated for the China Bio-Weapon Scamdemic “relief” is rampant. The city’s bus system is not now, nor has ever been, a self supporting operation. In fact, most municipal transportation systems are heavily subsidized by we taxpayers. So, the reality is… that which does not require “relief” should not get “relief”.

    And to be quite clear, “… capital expenses, the funds from the Act can be used to upgrade or purchase hardware and software used to support transit services along with customer and emergency communication technology that could range from buses to mobile phone apps.” are in NO WAY considered “relief”

    BTW: Has anyone yet to ask for the records and accounting of the $80+ million in our tax dollars that Leon County revived to help with (insert wink here) rental and utility payment assistance?

  3. Hey TR Staff, now would be a good time to do a follow up Story (or a Circle Back Story…..LOL) on the Electric Busses and how they are doing and holding up and IF they are still in service, if they are cost effective and how they compare to the Electric Busses that they had many Years before these.

  4. Casey Owens – Why is this story written in such a ponderous and uninformative way?
    Has the Commission decided how they are going to spend the money? You never tell us. If the Commission hasn’t decided how they will spend the money – you should tell us when they will make that decision. Don’t just quote boilerplate regulations that don’t say anything specific.
    You need a good editor.

    BadFedRes

    1. From the story:

      The when: “At the City Commission meeting on April 7th, 2021, elected officials will look to approve the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021”

      The amount: “$3,776,435 and $32,931, respectively.”

      How the money will be spent: “According to the Commission, operating expenses that are eligible under the CRRSAA include maintaining transit services, lost revenue, purchase of personal protective equipment and supplies, as well as paying for administrative leave for transit personnel due to COVID. As far as capital expenses, the funds from the Act can be used to upgrade or purchase hardware and software used to support transit services along with customer and emergency communication technology that could range from buses to mobile phone apps.”

  5. I’ve been wondering lately if the Biden/Harris administration has developed a more advanced and more effective method of getting a larger % of the relief funds and infrastructure porkules spending back into the coffers of The Democratic National Committee or are they still going with the old school method of thinking – and relying on the leftist unions to donate a large share back to the DNC?
    Hmmmm…maybe Reese Goad knows the answer. Maybe Reese Goad will get invited and agree to come on Preston’s Morning Show to share some of his awesome knowledge of the inner workings of governing in the leftist way. That would be great.

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