Public hearing for transportation funding grant application Wednesday

Mississippi State University is considering applying to the Mississippi Department of Transportation, Public Transportation Division, for assistance through its Rural Area Program to provide public transportation services within the City of Starkville, Oktibbeha County, Mississippi. Funding is available to state agencies, local public bodies and agencies thereof, non-profit organizations, operators of public transportation services in locations other than urbanized Area, and, under special circumstances, private operators of public transportation on a competitive basis to undertake eligible transportation activities.

The goals of the Rural Area Program are: to enhance the access of people in non-urbanized Area to health care, shopping, education, employment, public services and recreation; to assist in the maintenance, development, improvement, and use of public transportation systems in rural and small urban Area; to encourage and facilitate the most efficient use of all Federal funds used to provide passenger transportation in non-urbanized Area through the coordination of programs and services; and to provide for the participation of private transportation providers in non-urbanized transportation to the maximum extent feasible.

The purposes for which these funds can be used are capital purchases that include such items as support vehicles, communication equipment, wheelchair lifts, etc.; administrative costs that include such items as salaries, office supplies, insurance, etc.; and operating expenses that include such items as driver's wages, fuel, oil, etc.

More specific details regarding eligible activities, program requirements and the program criteria will be provided at a public hearing that will be held on the campus of Mississippi State University, Colvard Student Union, Salon M of Foster Ballroom, on Feb. 27, 2013, at 6 p.m.

The purpose of this hearing will be to obtain citizen input into the development of the application.

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