NEWARK – The North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority (NJTPA) endorsed two dozen shuttle services and community mobility programs to receive federal grant funding through the Job Access and Reverse Commute (JARC) and New Freedom programs at the May 9 Board of Trustees meeting.
JARC supports services that link low-income workers with job centers, such as shuttles, vanpools, new bus routes, connections to mass transit and guaranteed ride home programs. Fourteen existing services were selected for continued JARC funding, along with one new service. NJ Transit’s #62 bus line, a 24-hour service that runs between downtown Newark and Newark Liberty International Airport, will be extended to Elizabeth during the overnight hours.
The New Freedom program is designed to help enhance mobility options for travelers with disabilities. Five of the nine services are new, including public outreach programs in Hudson, Union and Morris counties designed to educate seniors and persons with disabilities about the public transportation options available to them. The two other new programs, proposed by Bergen County and the Transportation Management Association (TMA) Meadowlink, are intended to help connect riders with disabilities to job sites and training facilities.
The NJTPA has made $2.7 million in JARC and $2.2 million in New Freedom funding available to cover one year of funding requests for these services. The final allocations for each service will be determined subject to final approval by NJ Transit and successful demonstration by sponsors that they can meet local match requirements.
“These programs are enormously valuable to the communities they serve, and in many cases, their continuation hinges on the NJTPA’s support,” said NJTPA Chairman Daniel Sullivan, also a Union County Freeholder. “We’re going above and beyond to ensure those who face the greatest mobility obstacles are able to get to work each day and lead productive lives.”
The following services were endorsed in the Board’s resolution:
New Freedom Services
For more information about the JARC and New Freedom programs, visit www.njtpa.org.
The NJTPA is the metropolitan planning organization (MPO) for 13 northern New Jersey Counties. Under federal legislation, MPOs provide a forum where local officials, public transportation providers and state agency representatives can come together and cooperatively plan to meet the region’s current and future transportation needs. It establishes the region’s eligibility to receive federal tax dollars for transportation projects. The NJTPA Board consists of one local elected official from each of the 13 counties in the region (Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Hunterdon, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union and Warren), and the cities of Newark and Jersey City. The Board also includes a Governor’s Representative, the Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Transportation, the Executive Directors of NJ Transit and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and a Citizen’s Representative appointed by the Governor.