Hawai‘i Secures $8 Million in CARES Act Funds for Kaua‘i and Hawai‘i Island Transportation

June 30, 2020, 10:00 AM HST · Updated June 30, 10:00 AM
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Today, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (HI-02) announced that the Federal Transit Administration awarded $8,906,600 in CARES Act funds to the Hawai‘i Department of Transportation through its Rural Area Formula fund.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on our local economy and crippled many public services. These federal funds will help make sure that the public transportation that people depend on will continue to be available for those who need it most and be safe to use,” said Rep. Tulsi Gabbard.

HDOT is receiving the grant on behalf of two sub-recipients: Kaua‘i County Transportation Agency and County of Hawai‘i Mass Transit Agency. These agencies will use the funds for operational expenses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and will help cover salaries, fuel, vehicle maintenance, and cleaning and disinfection supplies.

The FTA’s Section 5311 Formula Grants for Rural Areas program provides capital, planning and operating assistance to states to support public transportation in rural areas with populations of less than 50,000, where many residents often rely on public transit to reach their destinations. The program also provides funding for state and national training and technical assistance through the Rural Transportation Assistance Program.

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Funds from this program may be used for planning, capital, operating, job access and reverse commute projects, and the acquisition of public transportation services.

Earlier this month, the FTA awarded over $7 million through the CARES Act to the Hawai‘i Department of Transportation on behalf of MauiBus through its Section 5307 Urbanized Area Formula fund.

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act was the third COVID-19 emergency assistance bill passed by Congress. The bill included direct cash payments to Americans, assistance for those who are out of work due to the outbreak, funding for small businesses, hospitals, and health care workers, and state as well as local governments. The bill’s funding for state and local governments included at least $1.2 billion for Hawai‘i.

$974,948 Daniel K Inouye International to Acquire Aircraft Rescue & Fire Fighting Vehicle

U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao announced today that the Trump Administration will award nearly $800 million in airport safety and infrastructure grants through the Federal Aviation Administration to 46 states, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the Marshall Islands.

“This nearly $800 million Federal investment in airport infrastructure will strengthen safety, improve travel, generate jobs and provide many economic benefits for local communities,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao. 

The total includes $689 million from the Airport Improvement Program and $104.4 million in Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act grants to equal a 100 percent Federal share.

In Hawaiʻi, $974,948 was secured for the Daniel K Inouye International to acquire an Aircraft Rescue & Fire Fighting Vehicle.

“These 383 grants will allow airport sponsors to either begin or complete construction projects that will maintain the safety and efficiency of our national airport system,” said FAA Administrator Stephen M. Dickson.

These grants will be used for a variety of critical infrastructure and safety projects. Some of the projects include purchasing aircraft rescue and firefighting equipment, constructing runways and taxiways, repairing runways and taxiways, installing aircraft lighting and signage, conducting airport master plan studies, and installing airport perimeter fencing.

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