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Innovative Public Transportation Workforce Development Program (Ladders of Opportunity Initiative)

Grants to USA Transportation Agencies, Non-Profits, Others to Create Employment Opportunities for Low Income Workers

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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United States Department of Transportation, Federal Transit Administration

Deadline Date:

12/23/14 11:59 PM ET


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Grants to USA state and local transit agencies, non-profits, universities, and others for projects that will enable low income workers to find employment in the public transportation industry. Eligible projects provide skills training and other services needed to to find employment in the public transportation industry.

FTA is seeking projects that create a new nationally or regionally significant workforce development program, or augment or replicate a successful existing program that will have benefits for transit agencies or the transit industry. While either type of effort will be considered, programs or approaches with an existing track record of success are likely to receive significant consideration.

Priority areas:

• Targeting areas with high rates of unemployment;

• Helping persons in local communities to directly benefit from employment opportunities created by the construction and operation of new transit capital projects or other public transportation activities within their region;

• Providing career pathways that support the movement of targeted populations (e.g., new transit entrants and other underserved populations) from initial or short-term employment opportunities to sustainable careers;

• Helping to increase through outreach and training the employment of minorities, women, individuals with disabilities, veterans, low-income populations and other underserved populations in public transportation activities;

• Addressing gaps in areas with current or projected workforce shortages in fields related to public transportation;

• Pre-employment training/preparation/tracking; and/or

• Recruitment and hiring.

Projects must provide direct support to workforce development projects.

Capital expenses such as equipment purchases are not considered to be eligible costs unless they directly relate to the workforce development program being supported by FTA funds.

Acceptable costs can include, but are not limited to: Faculty/instructors, including salaries and fringe benefits, support staff, classroom space, books, materials and supplies, and transportation stipends for students.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 148532

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

$200,000 - $1,000,000.

Term of Contract:

Up to 24 months.


Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Urban and rural transit agencies
State departments of transportation (DOTs) providing public transportation services
Metropolitan Planning Organizations
Indian Tribes

Applicants may apply individually or in a consortium of eligible applicants. The consortium of eligible applicants must include a lead applicant as the primary recipient of federal funds.

To be eligible for funding under this NOFA, applicants must demonstrate that the proposed project is supported by the primary applicant in partnership with one or more external strategic partner(s) with a substantial interest and involvement in the project. An external partner must be an entity that has no direct relationship to the primary applicant. For example, the external partner may not be a department within the applicant’s organization.

If the primary applicant is not a transit agency or consortia of transit agencies, the external partners must include at least one transit agency as an external partner.

In addition to transit agencies, an external partner entity could include, but is not limited to:

a. Educational institutions, which include entities providing professional accreditation, degree, and/or certification programs, such as universities, community colleges, or trade schools, either non-profit or for profit.

b. Public workforce investment systems, such as local Workforce Investment Boards and their one-stop systems.

c. Labor organizations, such as labor unions and labor management organizations.

d. Non-profit organizations that support the mission of transit and transportation workforce development.

Individuals, for-profit entities other than for-profit educational institutions, and Federal agencies are not eligible to apply to this program.

Pre-Application Information:

There is a minimum 50 percent non-Federal cost share for all funds awarded.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Betty Jackson

Funding or Pin Number:


URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Alaska;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Connecticut;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Hawaii;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   Nevada;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York City;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   Washington;   West Virginia;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming

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