Nearly $2 billion going to California public transit
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~ In a major move to support public transportation in California, Governor Gavin Newsom has announced the approval of over $1.9 billion in funding. The California State Transportation Agency (CalSTA) has approved this first wave of funding from the transit recovery package in the 2023-24 state budget.

This funding, which comes as part of Senate Bill 125, will be distributed among regional transportation planning agencies over the course of multiple years. The total amount of $5.1 billion will provide flexibility for agencies to use the funds for transit operations or capital improvements. The 22 agencies receiving this funding will receive varying amounts based on their regional population.

Governor Newsom emphasized the importance of this funding as a lifeline for transit agencies across the state and a step towards achieving California's ambitious climate goals. He also highlighted the inclusion of accountability measures to ensure long-term stability for these agencies.

California Transportation Secretary Toks Omishakin echoed Governor Newsom's sentiments, stating that this commitment to public transit is unwavering and that there is still more funding to come, including for zero-emission equipment and operations.

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The transit recovery package also includes measures to help stabilize and improve transit systems in the long term. CalSTA has formed a Transit Transformation Task Force to develop policy recommendations for increasing ridership, improving the transit experience, and addressing operational needs.

In addition to today's announcement, CalSTA has also put out a call for projects for over $900 million in funding through the Transit and Intercity Rail Capital Program (TIRCP). Project applications are due by July 23rd with an award announcement expected in October. This follows last year's allocation of nearly $3.5 billion in state funding for expanding transit and passenger rail services throughout California.

As California continues to face extreme weather conditions, Governor Newsom is urging residents to take precautions and stay safe during this dangerous heatwave. He also announced that California firefighters will be deployed to assist in staffing a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Incident Support Team in Texas as Tropical Storm Beryl approaches.

Furthermore, California has secured a Fire Management Assistance Grant (FMAG) from FEMA to support the response to the French Fire in Mariposa County. This assistance will ensure that vital resources are available to suppress the fire and protect communities.

With these recent developments, it is clear that California is committed to investing in and improving its public transportation system for the benefit of its residents and the environment.

Filed Under: Government, State

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