Reporting Edgar Linares
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – On Wednesday, a $1.18 million check from the Federal Transit Administration was delivered to the Minnesota Department of Transportation.
The funds come from $34 million in grants being devoted to projects across 30 states. The money is focused on creating a transportation referral system that will help improve transportation options and mobility for Minnesota’s veterans.
“There are a lot of services out there, but they’re not as well coordinated as they should be,” said FTA administrator Peter Rogoff. “As a result, the taxpayers are paying more money than they need to.”
The money will help expand the existing statewide “one call, one click” information center.
“Standing up these ‘one call, one click’ call centers will help all the communities in need,” said Rogoff.
The grant not only helps veterans and their families but also people with disabilities and older adults.
“That’s what this grant really represents, it’s trying to enhance the quality of life,” said MnDOT commissioner Tom Sorel.
The system will be developed in four phases. The first phase will build a 27-county transportation referral system in southwestern Minnesota. Phase two will build in the greater area of Minnesota, excluding the seven-county Twin City Metro area. Phase three will build in 14 counties in west central Minnesota and Phase four will build in seven counties in northeastern Minnesota.
MnDOT expects to have most of the areas active in the next three to four years.
NewsRadio 830 WCCO’s Susie Jones Reports