Assemblywoman Annie Rabbitt (R,C,I-Greenwood Lake) would like all area not-for-profits who work with the elderly or individuals with disabilities to be aware that the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) is now accepting 5310 grant applications. This grant program provides 80 percent of the cost of vehicles used by not-for-profits in the service of transporting seniors and disabled individuals.
“Between the economic recession and proposed funding cuts in the state budget, not-for-profits are struggling to stay afloat. This program, funded with federal transit aid, is a valuable resource to help not-for-profits during these tough times. I encourage all organizations to apply for this competitive grant program early,” said the Assemblywoman, referring to such proposed budget cuts as $2 million for in-home services for the elderly and $1 million for community services for the elderly.
Not-for-profits that serve the elderly or individuals with disabilities, as well as public bodies who are serving the same constituency in rural areas, are eligible to apply for 5310 grants. Applications are due by May 4, 2010 and due to limited funds, awardees are chosen on a competitive basis. According to the NYSDOT, who administers the grants, certain factors will play key roles in determining grant awardees. Such factors include:
- the general mobility limitations and level of need of transportation services in the area;
- the ability of the applicant to operate, maintain and finance their transportation service;
- the extent to which project vehicles proposed for funding are included and made part of a locally-developed, coordinated public transit/human services transportation plan (as required by the Federal Transit Administration);
- the actual vehicle usage for transporting elderly individuals and individuals with disabilities;
- evaluation and written findings of local, regional and state review agencies; and
- performance of current grantees in meeting grant requirements and the condition and status of existing vehicles.
Despite the competition for the 5310 grant, the Assemblywoman would like not-for-profits to not be deterred from applying and is encouraging any interested organizations to attend one of the NYSDOT’s 5310 grant workshops for more information and assistance. Regional workshops will be held across the state throughout the month of March. The closest workshops for not-for-profits in the 97th Assembly District will be held as follows:
- New Paltz: March 11, 2010 from 10 am to 2 pm at U/C BOCES located at 175 Route 32 North in New Paltz; and
- White Plains: March 22, 2010 from 1 pm to 3 pm at Westchester County Center located at 198 Central Avenue in White Plains.
For more information about the workshops or grants, or to obtain a helpful brochure or grant application, please visit the NYSDOT’s website at www.nysdot.grant.gov/public-transportation and follow the links for “Federal Transit Funding Programs” and “Section 5310 Elderly & Disabled Program.” You also may contact the NYSDOT by calling the Section 5310 Program Office at 518-457-8335 or by writing to NYSDOT, Public Transportation Bureau, Section 5310 Grant Program, 50 Wolf Road, POD 54, Albany, NY 12232.