Racine only City in WI to receive award from FTA Low or No Emission Vehicle Program

Racine – Today, the City of Racine received notice that it has been awarded $3,183,723 from the Federal Transit Authority’s (FTA) Low or No Emission Vehicle Program (“Low-No Program”) to buy electric buses. Racine is the only city in the state to receive an allocation, and 1 of only 41 other transit jurisdictions nationwide to receive this funding. In November of 2018, the City received $6,190,906.00 from the Volkswagen Transit Capital Assistance Grant Program which funded 6 electric buses and the related infrastructure. The FTA grant will increase that capacity from 6 electric buses to 9.

“As a City, we want to be a leader on moving from outdated, and carbon heavy diesel buses, to new carbon friendly electric buses. As Mayor, I am committed to lowering the City’s carbon footprint, but this also makes good fiscal sense for the City. The awards from both the FTA and from the VW program help the City avoid capital borrowing and, in the long-term, electric buses yield substantial savings on gas costs,” said Mayor Cory Mason. 

“The electric buses will replace buses that are 16 years old and have 500,000 miles on them.” said Michael Maierle, Transit and Parking Manager for the City of Racine.  “The new buses will run 100% cleaner, four times more efficiently, and our riders and neighbors will enjoy the quieter ride.”

“Electrifying the City’s bus fleet is not just about buses – it’s about our building and parking infrastructure, too.”  said Cara Pratt, Sustainability and Conservation Coordinator for the City of Racine. “We are working to identify opportunities to ensure that the charging of our buses is also powered by alternative energy.”

In January of this year, the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) announced the availability of $130 million of Fiscal Year 2020 funds for the purchase or lease of low or no emission vehicles. Proposals were due on March 17, 2020.

According to the FTA, the main purpose of the Low-No Program is to support the transition of the nation’s transit fleet to the lowest polluting and most energy efficient transit vehicles. The Low-No Program provides funding to state and local governmental authorities for the purchase or lease of zero-emission and low-emission transit buses, including acquisition, construction, and leasing of required supporting facilities. Additional information about the “Low or No Emission Vehicle Program” can be found HERE.

Additional information related to which other entities were funded in fiscal year 2020 can be found HERE.

The press release about put out by the FTA can be found HERE.

About the City of Racine

With a population of 78,000, RacineWisconsin is the fifth largest municipality in the state of Wisconsin.  It is home to manufacturing businesses that enjoy world-wide reputations, SC Johnson, CNH Industrial, Twin Disc, Modine, and In-Sink-Erator among them.  Racine is also home to diverse cultures, a thriving downtown, and world-class beaches along the shores of Lake Michigan.

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