For informational/historical purposes only.

The Ohio Department of Transportation

Internet News Release

January 14, 2005

Ohio Announces Funding for 2005 Specialized Transportation Program

(Columbus) -Ohio Department of Transportation Director Gordon Proctor today announced applications for the departments Specialized Transportation Program are now available and will be accepted beginning February 1, 2005.  The program provides federal funding for the purchase of vehicles by private, non-profit agencies or state-approved coordination projects to meet the special transportation needs of the elderly and persons with disabilities.

"This funding helps to expand the ability of individuals to travel to many places that would otherwise be inaccessible," said Proctor. "Public transportation often provides a lifeline to needed services such as health care, employment, public services, education, shopping and recreation as well as enhancing the quality of life."

The federal funds provide 80 percent of the cost of capital items with the remaining 20 percent to be provided by the applicant from non-federal sources.  Eligible equipment includes vehicles ranging from standard minivans to lift-equipped small buses as listed in the Vehicle and Catalog Selection Guide published by ODOT.

People who are elderly and people with disabilities are the primary beneficiaries of the transportation services provided with accessible vehicles purchased through this program, said Marianne Freed, administrator, Office of Transit. These vehicles help to promote independent living.

A statewide informational meeting on the program and application process will be held at the ODOT Auditorium, 1980 West Broad Street, Columbus, Ohio on February 16, 2005 from 9:30 a.m. to noon. Agencies requesting or operating wheelchair equipped vehicles will be required to meet Ohios new ambulette licensing requirements.  A special presentation will be made at the meeting to discuss this new requirement.

In urban areas, the local Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) will also be holding informational meetings on the Specialized Transportation Program.  Dates and times of these meetings may be obtained from ODOTs Web site or by contacting the MPO directly.