Program Guidance and Application Instructions for State Planning and Research Program Grants


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12-27-01

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Number C 8200.1
12-27-01
U.S. Department of Transportation

Federal Transit Administration

  1. PURPOSE. This circular provides program guidance and application instructions for applying for grants under the State Planning and Research Program (SPRP). This program is authorized under 49 U.S.C. §5313(b). The circular addresses the requirements that must be met in the application for Section 5313(b) research assistance and provides information about the basis for those requirements. This circular incorporates current statutory and programmatic requirements based on the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21), Public Law 105-178, enacted June 9, 1998, as amended by the TEA-21 Restoration Act, Public Law 105-206, enacted July 22, 1998.
  2. CODIFICATION OF FEDERAL TRANSIT LAWS. Since July 1994, the bulk of Federal transit law has been codified in chapter 53 of Title 49, United States Code. Upon codification, substantially all of the Federal Transit Act, as amended, was repealed as redundant.
  3. REFERENCES .
    1. Federal Transit Administration enabling legislation codified at 49 U.S.C. chapter 53.
    2. FTA website at Federal Transit Laws - 49 U.S.C. Chapter 53.
    3. Federal highway and surface transportation laws, Title 23, United States Code.
    4. Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991, Pub. L. No. 102-240, 105 Stat. 1914, Dec. 18, 1991 (codified as amended by Pub. L. 103-272, 108 Stat. 745, July 5, 1994, in scattered sections of 49 and 23 United States Code).
    5. Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21), Pub. L. No. 105-178, June 9, 1998, as amended by the TEA-21 Restoration Act, Pub.L. No. 105-206, June 22, 1998.
    6. Lobbying disclosure provisions of 31 U.S.C. § 1352.
    7. Clean Air Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §§ 7401 et seq. and scattered sections of 29 United States Code.
    8. Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, 42 U.S.C. §§ 12101 et seq.
    9. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, 29 U.S.C. § 794.
    10. National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §§ 4321 et seq.
    11. Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, 16 U.S.C. § 470f.
    12. Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988, 49 U.S.C. § 702
    13. U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development regulations, "Community Development Block Grants," 24 C.F.R. Part 570.
    14. U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations, "Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements to State and Local Governments," 49 C.F.R Part 18.
    15. U.S. DOT regulations, "New Restrictions on Lobbying," 49 C.F.R. Part 20.
    16. U.S. DOT regulations, "Participation by Minority Business Enterprise in Department of Transportation Programs," 49 C.F.R. Part 23.
    17. U.S. DOT regulations, "Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Handicap in Programs and Activities Receiving or Benefiting from Federal Financial Assistance," 49 C.F.R. Part 27.
    18. U.S. DOT regulations, "Governmentwide Debarment and Suspension (Nonprocurement) and Governmentwide Requirements for Drug-free Workplace (Grants)," 49 C.F.R. Part 29.
    19. U.S. DOT regulations, "Procedures for Transportation Workplace Drug Testing Programs," 49 C.F.R. Part 40.
    20. U.S. DOT regulations, "Seismic Safety," 49 C.F.R. Part 41.
    21. FTA regulations, "Capital Leases," 49 C.F.R. Part 639.
    22. FTA regulations, "Buy America Requirements, 49 C.F.R. Part 661.
    23. Joint Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)/FTA regulations, "Planning Assistance and Standards," 23 C.F.R. Part 450 and 49 C.F.R. Part 613 (specifically, Subpart B, "Statewide Transportation Planning," and Subpart C, "Metropolitan Transportation Planning and Programming"). Issued on September 22, 1999.
    24. Joint FHWA/FTA regulations, "Environmental Impact and Related Procedures," 23 C.F.R. Part 771. EPA regulations, "Determining Conformity of Federal Actions to State or Federal Implementation Plans," 40 C.F.R. Part 93.
    25. Department of Labor Guidelines, "DOL Guidelines, Section 5333(b), Federal Transit law," 29 C.F.R. Part 215.
    26. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-133, "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Non-Profit Organizations," dated 6-30-97.
    27. Executive Order 12898 on "Environmental Justice" dated February 11, 1994 [http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/index.html].
    28. Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 [http://www.usdoj.gov/crt/cor/coord/titlevistat.htm].
    29. FTA Circular 4220.1D, "Third Party Contracting Requirements," dated 4-15-96, Page Change 1, dated 8-4-98.
    30. FTA Circular 4702.1, "Title VI Program Guidelines for Federal Transit Administration Recipients," dated 5-26-88.
    31. FTA Circular 4704.1, "Equal Employment Opportunity Program Guidelines for Grant Recipients," dated 7-26-88.
    32. FTA Circular 5010.1C, "Grant Management Guidelines," dated 10-1-98.
    33. FTA Circular 8100.1B, "Program Guidance and Application Instructions for Metropolitan Planning Program Grants, dated 10-25-96.
    34. FTA Circular 9030.1C, "Urbanized Area Formula Program Grant Application Instructions," dated 10-1-98.
    35. FTA Circular 9040.1E, "Nonurbanized Area Formula Program Guidance and Grant Application Instructions," dated 10-1-98.
    36. FTA Circular 9400.1A, "Design and Art in Transit Projects," dated 6-9-95.
    37. FTA Circular 9500.1, "Intergovernmental Review of FTA Planning, Capital and Operating Programs and Activities," dated 3-30-84.
    38. FTA Notice "Policy Statements on Local Share Issues," 57 Fed. Reg., 30880 (1992).

Note: FTA Circulars can be found at: Circulars home

To the extent permitted by law, the FTA Administrator reserves the right to waive any provision of this circular.

 

Jennifer L. Dorn
Administrator

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Chapter I: Introduction and Background

  1. THE FEDERAL TRANSIT ADMINISTRATION. The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) is one of ten operating administrations within the U.S. Department of Transportation. Headquarters offices are located at 400 7th Street, S.W., Washington, D. C. 20590. FTA has 10 regional offices, each headed by a Regional Administrator. The regional offices form a local presence to provide assistance in the development of transit programs and projects, review of grant applications, and monitoring of grants awarded by FTA. State Planning and Research Program applications must be submitted to the appropriate FTA regional office.
  1. FEDERAL TRANSIT LAWS. For 30 years the legislation establishing and governing the FTA and its programs resided in the Federal Transit Act, as amended. Since July 1994, the bulk of Federal transit law has been codified at 49 U.S.C. Chapter 53. (Upon codification, substantially all of the Federal Transit Act, as amended, was repealed as redundant.) Section 5313(b) of Title 49, United States Code (cited as 49 U.S.C. § 5313(b)) establishes requirements for the State Planning and Research Program. See Chapter 53 of Title 49, United States Code.
  1. AUTHORIZING LEGISLATION. Authorizing legislation is substantive legislation enacted by Congress that sets up or continues the legal operation of a Federal program or agency. Congress amends FTA’s authorizing legislation every four to six years. FTA’s most recent authorizing legislation is the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21). TEA-21 was subsequently amended by the TEA-21 Restoration Act. TEA-21 authorizes FTA programs from Federal Fiscal Year 1998 through Federal Fiscal Year 2003.
  1. THE STATE PLANNING AND RESEARCH PROGRAM (49 U.S.C. § 5313(b)). The Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 (ISTEA) created a new Planning and Research Program that was subsequently carried over into TEA-21. Within this program is the State Planning and Research Program (SPRP) (§ 5313(b)). Prior to passage of the ISTEA, the FTA provided separate funding for research, development, and demonstration activities (§ 5312(a)); Metropolitan Planning (§ 5303); Training activities (§ 5312(c)); Research and Training in Urban Transportation Problems (§ 5312(b)); and Human Resource activities (§ 5322). SPRP now provides broad discretion to the States for the funding for all these activities. (Metropolitan Planning activities are also eligible under § 5303.)

    The governor of each State must designate a State recipient for its SPRP funds. This program provides for contracts, grants, and cooperative agreements to public and private sources for a wide range of eligible activities, including:

     

    1. Development, testing, and demonstration of new facilities, equipment, techniques, and methods;
    2. Studies relating to management, operations, capital requirements, and economic feasibility of transit projects;
    3. Research and investigation into the practical problems of public transportation;
    4. National and local programs designed to increase minority and female employment in public transportation activities;
    5. Preparation of Metropolitan and State Transportation Plans, Metropolitan and State Transportation Improvement Programs (TIPs and STIPs), and Management Systems which guide the use of Federal capital assistance resources; and
    6. Fellowships for persons working in the public transportation field.
  1. RELATIONSHIP TO SELECTED OTHER DOT PROGRAMS.
    1. FTA Programs. The following is a brief discussion of three FTA programs that also can be used to fund planning activities.
      1. Metropolitan Planning Program (49 U.S.C. § 5303(g)). The Metropolitan Planning Program (MPP) provides financial assistance through States to their Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) to aid in the preparation of plans and cost-effective Transportation Improvement Programs (TIPs) which guide the use of Federal capital assistance resources. The plans and programs reflect a variety of States and local objectives as well as national priorities. The MPP provides a means of drawing State and local attention to national purposes in addition to funding State and local needs. FTA Circular 8100.1B, "Program Guidance and Application Instructions for Metropolitan Planning Program Grants" provides detailed information specifically on this program.
      1. Urbanized Area Formula Program (49 U.S.C. § 5307). Funds for urbanized areas under 200,000 in population are made available to the Governor or the Governor's designee(s) for distribution. For urbanized areas over 200,000 in population, funds are available to a local designated recipient(s). One of the activities eligible for funding from this program is transportation planning for urbanized areas. The Federal match for planning assistance under this program is established by statute at 80 percent of the project cost.

        There are no Urbanized Area Formula funds specifically earmarked or set aside for transportation planning; rather, these funds may be used for planning at the discretion of the recipient(s) to supplement metropolitan planning resources where the MPP allocation is insufficient to carry out the full program the MPO and transit operator wish to pursue. Guidelines for applicants for the Urbanized Area Formula Program (formerly § 9) are available from FTA regional offices, (FTA Circular 9030.1C, "Urbanized Area Formula Program; Grant Application Instructions").
      1. Nonurbanized Area Formula Program (49 U.S.C. § 5311). This program provides funds to the State for public transportation projects in small urban and rural areas. Up to fifteen percent of these funds may be used for planning activities as well as States administration and technical assistance. Circular, FTA Circular 9040.IE "Nonurbanized Area Formula Program Guidance and Grant Application Instruction," gives more information on this program.
    1. Related FHWA Administered Programs. Following is a brief discussion of two flexible funds programs and two programs that are administered by FHWA. Information on these programs can be found on the FHWA website at http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/tea21/factsheets/index.htm.
      1. Surface Transportation Program (STP) (23 U.S.C. § 104(b)(3)). ISTEA established and TEA-21 continued the Surface Transportation Program as a source of flexible funding for both highway and transit projects. These funds may be used by FTA grantees for planning purposes in support of project development.
      1. Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program (CMAQ) (23 U.S.C. § 149). The Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program may also be used for either highway or transit projects, including planning activities undertaken in support of projects intended to meet air quality standards. Both the STP and CMAQ programs are administered by FHWA.
    1. FHWA Metropolitan Planning Program (PL) (23 U.S.C. § 134). Federal Highway's PL funds, like FTA's Metropolitan Planning Program funds, may be used for all transportation planning purposes in metropolitan areas.
    1. FHWA State Planning and Research Program (SP&R) (23 U.S.C. § 505). Federal Highway's SP&R program is a close counterpart to FTA's State Planning and Research program. SP&R funds may be used for Statewide planning, research, and for administrative expenses associated with the State's planning program.
  1. POOLED FUNDS. In order to promote transportation systems that maximize mobility and accessibility and minimize transportation impacts on the human and natural environment, States transportation planning agencies may, in cooperation with metropolitan planning organizations, choose to pool funds. These pooled funds can be used to fund research that is of mutual interest and benefit and addresses the transportation needs of areas with critical needs or that support a broader, more comprehensive, statewide need. National pooled fund studies are focused on solving problems of national significance, usually administered by either FTA or FHWA headquarters offices in cooperation with States and/or MPOs, that are funded by State and/or MPO contributions of FTA planning and research funds, with or without matching funds.

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Chapter II: State Planning and Research: Formula and Notification

  1. NOTIFICATION. SPRP apportionments to the States are published in the Federal Register annually, after the U.S. Department of Transportation Appropriations Act for the fiscal year has been signed. FTA usually publishes apportionments in October of each year.
  1. AUTHORIZATION. Amounts authorized for SPRP work are established by statutory formula in 49 U.S.C. § 5338(c). Under the formula established in ISTEA and subsequently in TEA-21, 17.28 percent of the total amount set aside for planning is for the SPRP.
  1. FORMULAS. FTA apportions SPRP assistance to the States (49 U.S.C. § 5313(b)(1)), based on the ratio equal to the population in each State's urbanized areas divided by the total population in urbanized areas in all the States, as shown by the latest available census prepared by the U.S. Bureau of the Census. However, a State must receive at least .5 percent of the amount annually apportioned.
  1. AVAILABILITY OF SPRP ASSISTANCE.
    1. Grant Awards. After FTA apportions the SPRP assistance appropriated, the SPRP assistance remains available to the State for obligation for three years after the Federal fiscal year for which that SPRP assistance was appropriated. Upon expiration of that time period, any SPRP assistance remaining unobligated or which FTA deobligates will lapse to the State. FTA reapportions any lapsed SPRP assistance among all the States in subsequent apportionments.
    1. Preaward Authority. Even if a State has not executed a grant agreement with FTA, the State may expend its own funds for SPRP work beginning on the date specified in the current Federal Register apportionment notification, and that work will remain eligible for FTA assistance until the SPRP assistance lapses. Only if work is eligible for SPRP assistance will FTA provide retroactive SPRP assistance to support that work. Beginning with FY 1998, blanket preaward authority was provided for SPRP assistance through the life of TEA-21, FY 2003. During this time period, costs may be incurred for eligible SPRP work and remain eligible for reimbursement when SPRP assistance is ultimately made available. This preaward authority expires with the lapsing of FY 2003 SPRP assistance.

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Chapter III: Application Instructions

  1. GENERAL. Following enactment of the annual U.S. DOT Appropriations Act, FTA apportions SPRP assistance to each State. Once an SPRP grant is awarded, the State can draw down SPRP assistance for costs incurred. Because the State is the recipient of SPRP assistance from FTA, the State submits its application and all supporting documentation directly to FTA. An entity seeking SPRP assistance through the State is responsible for providing sufficient documentation to the State to allow the State to make the necessary assurances to FTA and to submit an adequate SPRP application.

    The State is the recipient for all SPRP grants; most often, the State transportation department administers the State's SPRP grant. FTA does not mandate uniform procedures by which States must process subrecipient requests for assistance. A State may establish its own application procedures, provided that those procedures permit the State to provide SPRP assistance promptly to its subrecipient. SPRP applications are to be submitted electronically using FTA’s electronic award and management system, available on FTA’s website.

  2. STATE APPLICATION TO FTA.
    1. The State agency designated as the SPRP recipient must submit its application to the appropriate FTA Regional Office, with the signature of the individual authorized to apply for grants on behalf of the State agency. The State applicant submits the State's application using the FTA electronic award and management system.
    1. FTA encourages States to submit one combined application for both the MPP and SPRP annually. This will result in a single planning grant with a number in the ST-80-X### series that includes both Metropolitan and State planning activities.
    1. State (aggregate) Project Task Budget for Planning.
      1. Summarizes approved planning tasks and budgeted amounts from the UPWPs submitted by MPOs within the State as well as planning undertaken in areas of the State outside the urbanized areas. Tasks included in the State Project Task Budget should reflect SPRP-funded activities from metropolitan UPWPs for which assistance is being sought.
      1. Should include those planning activities undertaken in non-urbanized areas of the State and is the basis for an applicant incurring obligations and FTA making disbursements of project assistance. This budget should broadly identify tasks in order to minimize the need for post grant approval actions such as budget revisions and grant amendments.
      1. The sample Project Task Budget and task descriptions in Appendix C represent a uniform set of categories. The State must prepare the State (aggregate) Project Task Budget in a format similar to that of Appendix B. This may require aggregation of UPWP tasks for budget preparation.
    1. Project Budget. The funds for planning, research, and human resources will have individual scope codes and must be in separate budgets with the associated Activity Line Item Codes for the State’s application to FTA. (See Appendix B for samples) The chapters in the circular for activities other than planning, i.e., Human Resources and Research, provide the scope codes that are used in a project budget; Appendix B provides activity line item codes in sample budgets. The most current codes for all project scopes and activities can be viewed on the FTA website.
    1. Cost Allocation Plan/Indirect Cost Proposal.
      1. If indirect costs (overhead) are to be charged to the project, the State must provide a cost allocation plan or indirect cost proposal to support those indirect cost charges. Before FTA may reimburse the State for indirect charges, the plan or proposal must be provided and approved by the cognizant Federal agency assigned to the State (which is not FTA).
      2. The State must certify that the plan or proposal was prepared according to standards required by OMB Circular A-87, Revised, "Cost Principles for States and Local Governments" and should identify the indirect cost rate that will be used for the fiscal year. The rate may be later adjusted based on an audit.
      3. The State should notify FTA if the State intends to charge indirect costs to a project, but has not prepared a cost allocation plan/indirect cost proposal.
      4. Information on preparing the cost allocation plan or indirect cost proposal is contained in FTA Circular 5010.1C, "Grant Management Guidelines," and any changes that may be issued thereto. 
    1. Local Share.
      1. Unless an exception is made to the State's local share requirement, the State must make a commitment in the application to provide the entire 20 percent local share of the total project cost of its entire SPRP grant request.
      2. Each commitment must specify whether the local matching share consists of cash, in-kind services, or a combination of both.

    g. State Certifications and Assurances. Before FTA may provide SPRP assistance to the State, the FTA must have certifications and assurances that certain Federal requirements have been met or will be met by the State and local recipients. In this regard, the State applicant acts as an authorized representative of the local subrecipient. For this reason, the State applicant should first obtain sufficient documentation from all local subrecipients to support those certifications and assurances the State applicant must provide to FTA.

    FTA has consolidated the certifications and assurances for the applicant to submit annually. If FTA already has the State applicant's most current signed certifications and assurances and it has provided adequate certifications and assurances to qualify it for a SPRP grant, the State applicant need not submit separate certifications and assurances for SPRP assistance in that fiscal year. FTA certifications and assurances are published in the Federal Register, in conjunction with FTA's annual apportionments and are available on the FTA website.

    The current Federal Register notice and annual certifications and assurances can be accessed on the Internet by clicking here. They are also available to read, review, certify and copy on FTA's electronic award and management system. State applicants must submit their certifications and assurances electronically using FTA’s electronic award and management system. Federal Register Notices can also be accessed by clicking here.  First time applicants, such as a newly reorganized unit of State government, should contact the appropriate FTA regional office to arrange access to FTA’s electronic award and management system.

  1. ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF APPLICATION. FTA’s electronic award and management system will provide notification if the application has been successfully submitted. Because FTA cannot assign a grant number until it has determined that the application is complete, State applicants should also notify FTA that a submission has been made. (The website version of FTA’s electronic award and management system will automate the notification process).
  1. GRANT APPROVAL. When a grant application has been approved, FTA notifies the applicant electronically through the email system and via telephone.

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Chapter IV: State Planning

  1. REGULATORY BASIS. Since 1975, Federal regulatory requirements have been promulgated for State and metropolitan transportation planning. FTA published its first planning regulations, "Urban Transportation Planning," jointly with FHWA in 1975. Those regulations were simplified in August 1980, then revised and re-issued in June 1983. In October 1993, FTA and FHWA published new joint regulations, "Planning Assistance and Standards," 23 C.F.R. Part 450 and 49 C.F.R. Part 613 to reflect the changes in the Federal planning programs created by the enactment of the ISTEA. Within these regulations, Subpart C addresses metropolitan transportation planning and programming, and Subpart B addresses statewide transportation planning.

    The 1993 planning regulations elaborate on the following fundamental principles that are particularly relevant to State planning:

     

    1. Within each State, a statewide long-range transportation plan must be produced.
    1. Within each State, STIPs, including unmodified TIPs, must be produced.
    1. For projects to which the regulations apply, FTA and FHWA will provide financial assistance only to projects contained in the STIP approved by both FTA and FHWA. (Among other things, the STIP contains unmodified TIPs submitted by MPOs.)

    To meet all these and other planning and program requirements, the SPRP is a major source of Federal financial assistance to the States.

  1. ELIGIBLE PLANNING ACTIVITIES. Eligible work or activities include, but are not limited to:
    1. Studies relating to management, operations, capital requirements, innovative financing opportunities, security and economic feasibility of transit projects;
    1. Evaluation of previously funded projects;
    1. Similar work or activities preliminary to the construction of or improved operation of facilities and equipment including "livability" features such as improved pedestrian and bicycle access to the station and shops and community services in the station area, incorporating arts and artistic design in stations and surrounding areas, and other improvements that enhance the usability and community-friendliness of the transit system environment;
    1. Systems analysis;
    1. Development of a 20-year transportation plans;
    1. Development of STIPs;
    1. Corridor/systems planning studies;
    1. Analyses of social, economic, and environmental factors related to travel and transportation;
    1. Air quality planning, and conformity planning;
    1. Public involvement in the transit/transportation planning process;
    1. Multimodal facilities planning;
    1. Joint development planning; and
    1. Computer hardware and software needed to support planning work.
  1. FTA Review. In reviewing a State’s Work Program, FTA evaluates the following:
    1. Relevance of the proposed activities to develop and maintain an appropriate technical and policy level needed to implement the State’s 20-year transportation plan and STIP requirements;
    1. Eligibility of each task for FTA financial assistance; and
    1. As appropriate, inclusion of tasks reflecting Federal planning emphasis areas that are published annually in FTA’s Appropriation Apportionment Federal Register Notice.

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Chapter V: Metropolitan Planning Activities

  1. SUBRECIPIENT ELIGIBILITY. FTA apportions SPRP funds directly to the states. Eligible subrecipients of FTA monies through the States for metropolitan planning purposes are Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs.)
  1. ELIGIBLE GRANT ACTIVITIES. SPRP grants are available for direct labor or for contracts to undertake the balanced and comprehensive planning, engineering, design and evaluation of public transportation projects and for transportation planning studies involving modes in addition to transit when performed as part of the metropolitan transportation planning process. SPRP funds can also be used to cover the costs of administering planning grants including Metropolitan Planning grants.

    Metropolitan planning activities authorized under 49 U.S.C. § 5303 may be undertaken with SPRP funds. Eligible activities include, but are not limited to, studies relating to management, operations, capital requirements and economic feasibility; evaluation of previously funded projects; development of Transportation Plans, TIPs, etc. and other similar or related activities preliminary to and in preparation for the construction, acquisition or improved operation of public transportation systems, facilities and equipment. FTA Circular 8100.1B, "Program Guidance and Application Instructions for Metropolitan Planning Program Grants," provides more detailed information on FTA’s Metropolitan Planning Program.

    SPRP planning funds may be used to fund up to 20 percent of preliminary engineering (PE) and design for a facility. Preliminary engineering and design are eligible costs depending on the Section under which the facility is built. For example, if SPRP planning funds are being utilized for a project under § 5303, then up to 20 percent could be used. However, if a project is funded under § 5312(a), research, development and demonstration, the Federal share for PE and design could conceivably be more.

  2. FUNDING RATIO. The federal share for eligible planning activities is 80 percent. The remaining 20 percent cost must be provided locally or by the State in cash or in-kind contributions.
  1. BUDGET SCOPE AND ACTIVITY LINE ITEM CODES. The Scope Code for Metropolitan Planning is 442-00. A sample project budget scope with activity line item codes can be found in Appendix B. Line item codes remain the same for both Statewide and Metropolitan Planning. See Planning scope codes and activity line item codes

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Chapter VI: Training Activities

  1. SUBRECIPIENT ELIGIBILITY. For the purposes of 49 U.S.C. § 5312(c), States, local governmental authorities, and operators of mass transportation systems are eligible subrecipients for fellowships to train personnel employed in managerial, technical and professional positions in the mass transportation field.
  1. ELIGIBLE GRANT ACTIVITIES. A fellowship under this subsection may not be for more than one year of training in an institution that offers a program applicable to the mass transportation industry. The recipient shall select an individual on the basis of demonstrated ability and for the contribution the individual reasonably can be expected to make to an efficient mass transportation operation.
  1. FUNDING RATIO. An individual fellowship may not be more than the lesser of $24,000 or 75 percent of (A) tuition and other charges to the fellowship recipient; (B) additional costs incurred by the training institution and billed to the recipient; and (C) the regular salary of the fellowship recipient for the period of the fellowship to the extent the salary is actually paid or reimbursed by the recipient.
  1. NATIONAL TRANSIT INSTITUTE TRAINING. In addition to training activities under 49 U.S.C. § 5312(c), States and public mass transportation authorities are eligible for education and training funds under 49 U.S.C. § 5315(d), which allows use of not more than .5 percent of the amounts made available to carry out formula grants (49 U.S.C. § 5307) or capital investments (49 U.S.C. § 5309) to pay not more than 80 percent of the cost of tuition and direct educational expenses related to educating and training state and local transportation employees through grants and contracts with public and private agencies, other institutions, individuals and the National Transit Institute.
  1. BUDGET SCOPE AND ACTIVITY LINE ITEM CODES. The Scope Code for training is 441-30. See Scope codes and activity line item codes

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Chapter VII: Research and Training in Urban Transportation Problem Activities

  1. SUBRECIPIENT ELIGIBILITY. The SPRP may be used for research, development and demonstration activities for the purposes of 49 U.S.C. § 5312(c) and may be performed by any eligible subrecipient. University research and training activities for the purposes of 49 U.S.C. § 5312(b)(1) may be performed by nonprofit institutions of higher learning, with preference for those that bring together knowledge and expertise in the various social science and technical disciplines related to urban transportation problems.
  1. ELIGIBLE GRANT ACTIVITIES. Research, development and demonstration activities related to urban mass transportation for the purposes of 49 U.S.C. § 5312(a) must help reduce urban transportation needs, improve mass transportation service, or help mass transportation service meet the total urban transportation needs at a minimum cost. The State may allocate funds to the Transit Cooperative Research Program (49 U.S.C. § 5313(a)).

    University research and training activities for the purposes of 49 U.S.C. § 5312(b)(1) may be undertaken either:

     

        1. to conduct competent research investigations into the theoretical or practical problems of urban transportation (i.e., the design and use of urban mass transportation systems and urban roads and highways; the interrelationship between various modes of urban and interurban transportation; the role of transportation planning in overall urban planning; public preferences in transportation; the economic allocation of transportation resources; and the legal, financial, engineering, and esthetic aspects of urban transportation); or
        1. to train individuals to conduct further research or obtain employment in an organization that plans, builds, operates or manages an urban transportation system.
  1. FUNDING RATIO. The maximum percentage of Federal participation is 80 percent with a local share of 20 percent of the project cost required. However, projects of national importance or certain grants to universities my have a lower match requirement.
  1. BUDGET SCOPE AND ACTIVITY LINE ITEM CODES. The Scope Code for research and training is 441-60. A sample project budget scope with activity line item codes can be found in Appendix B. See Scope codes and activity line item codes

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Chapter VIII: Human Resource Activities

  1. ELIGIBLE GRANT ACTIVITIES. Eligible activities authorized by 49 U.S.C. § 5322 (formerly Section 20) include projects that address the human resource needs and conditions of the mass transportation industry. Human resource projects likely to be funded are those that fulfill the agency’s transportation human resource goals.

     

    1. Eligible projects include, but are not limited to:
      1. Employment training programs.
      1. Outreach programs that increase the number of minorities and women in job categories where such persons have traditionally been underutilized.
      1. Programs that increase the involvement of minority educational institutions in mass transit programs and activities.
    1. Examples of funded projects include:
      1. Transit agencies’ technical assistance programs to enhance the participation of disadvantaged business enterprises (DBE) in transit-related projects and other contracting opportunities.
      1. Career development/employment programs to increase the diversity of minorities and women in the workforce.
      1. Training programs for disadvantaged youths to obtain entry-level employment and training in skilled crafts.
      1. Implementation of transit projects for Native American tribes and organizations.
  1. SUBRECIPIENT ELIGIBILITY. Local governments, educational institutions, and nonprofit organizations.
  1. FUNDING RATIO. FTA encourages cost sharing on projects involving nonpublic applicants, as well as the provision of local matching funds by public bodies to the maximum extent feasible.
  1. BUDGET SCOPE AND ACTIVITY LINE ITEM CODES. The Scope Code for human resources is 441-20. A sample project budget scope with activity line item codes can be found in Appendix B. See Scope codes and activity line item codes

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Appendix A: Definitions

Although the terms set forth below may have different meanings for other programs FTA administers, definitions have been prepared explaining the meaning of the following terms used in the State Planning and Research Program (SPRP) application guidance contained in this circular:

      1. ACTIVITY - an item of cost in a work program associated with a specific study, portion of a study, or other eligible planning undertaking as identified in Appendix B.
      2. - an item of cost in a work program associated with a specific study, portion of a study, or other eligible planning undertaking as identified in .
      1. GRANTEE - only a State is a grantee, as defined below.
      2. - only a State is a grantee, as defined below.
      1. METROPOLITAN PLANNING ORGANIZATIONS (MPO) - the subrecipient of the State to which the State provides assistance for metropolitan planning.
      2. - the subrecipient of the State to which the State provides assistance for metropolitan planning.
      1. PROJECT - all the transportation and transportation-related planning work and other eligible activities as described in this circular within the State for the fiscal year in which FTA has awarded a planning grant.
      2. - all the transportation and transportation-related planning work and other eligible activities as described in this circular within the State for the fiscal year in which FTA has awarded a planning grant.
      1. PROJECT TASK BUDGET - the document submitted with a State's SPRP application to FTA for planning assistance. This document summarizes the aggregate costs of completing all planning activities in nonurbanized areas. If the application is also for funding for metropolitan planning, the metropolitan planning task budget will aggregate the planning activities from individual UPWPs submitted by MPOs within the State into a consolidated Metropolitan Project Task budget.
      2. - the document submitted with a State's SPRP application to FTA for planning assistance. This document summarizes the aggregate costs of completing all planning activities in nonurbanized areas. If the application is also for funding for metropolitan planning, the metropolitan planning task budget will aggregate the planning activities from individual UPWPs submitted by MPOs within the State into a consolidated Metropolitan Project Task budget.
      1. STATE - each of the fifty States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, all of which have at least one urbanized area.
      2. - each of the fifty States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, all of which have at least one urbanized area.
      1. SUBAGREEMENT - any mechanism, such as a subgrant or another instrument, employed by the State to award or transfer SPRP funds or MPP funds to individual subrecipients, for example MPOs.
      2. - any mechanism, such as a subgrant or another instrument, employed by the State to award or transfer SPRP funds or MPP funds to individual subrecipients, for example MPOs.
      1. SUBRECIPIENT - unless the context of the guidance requires otherwise, an entity receiving SPRP (and/or MPP) assistance directly from the State.
      2. - unless the context of the guidance requires otherwise, an entity receiving SPRP (and/or MPP) assistance directly from the State.
      1. TASK - for budgeting purposes using the format of Appendix B, the aggregate of all SPRP-funded planning activities for Research, Development and Demonstration activities (§ 5312(a)); Metropolitan Planning (§ 5301(a)); Training activities (§ 5312(c)); Research and Training in Urban Transportation Problems (§ 5312(b)); and Human Resource activities (§ 5322).
      2. - for budgeting purposes using the format of , the aggregate of all SPRP-funded planning activities for Research, Development and Demonstration activities (§ (a)); Metropolitan Planning (§ (a)); Training activities (§ (c)); Research and Training in Urban Transportation Problems (§ (b)); and Human Resource activities (§ ).
      1. ELECTRONIC APPLICATION AND MANAGEMENT SYSTEM – FTA has an electronic award and management system that, by Federal Fiscal Year 2002, is expected to be available on FTA’s website.
      2. FTA has an electronic award and management system that, by Federal Fiscal Year 2002, is expected to be available on FTA’s website.
      1. UNIFIED PLANNING WORK PROGRAM (UPWP) – a periodic statement of proposed work elements and estimated costs that documents the eligible metropolitan planning activities to be undertaken with FTA and FHWA assistance during the next one or two-year period by an MPO.
      2. a periodic statement of proposed work elements and estimated costs that documents the eligible metropolitan planning activities to be undertaken with FTA FHWA assistance during the next one or two-year period by an MPO.
      1. WORK ELEMENT - planning activity to be undertaken.
      2. - planning activity to be undertaken.
      1. WORK PROGRAM - a periodic statement of proposed work elements and estimated costs that documents the eligible statewide planning activities to be undertaken with SPRP assistance during the next one or two-year period by the State and/or its planning subrecipients.
      2. - a periodic statement of proposed work elements and estimated costs that documents the eligible statewide planning activities to be undertaken with SPRP assistance during the next one or two-year period by the State and/or its planning subrecipients.

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Appendix B: Sample Project Task Budgets

Sample task budgets are based on Activity Line Item Codes in place at the time of Circular publication.

STATEWIDE PLANNING

SCOPE CODE

DESCRIPTION

PROJECT BUDGET1

ALI
441-00 Statewide Planning
44.21.00 Program Support and Administration

$ 174,600

44.22.00 General Development and Comprehensive Planning

127,400

44.23.00 Long Range Transportation Planning (To include EIS)
44.23.01 System Level

113,000

44.23.02 Project Level

750,000

44.24.00 Short Range Transportation Planning

165,000

44.25.00 Transportation Improvement Program

20,000

44.26.00 Emphasis Areas
44.26.01 Transportation Equity & Public Involvement

84,000

44.26.02 Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS)
44.26.03 Preparing for the Year 2000 Census

16,000

44.27.00 Other Activities

_________

TOTAL

$1,450,000

1 FTA funds plus/state/local match.
Refer to Appendix C of this circular for Statewide Planning scope and line item codes. FTA's Electronic Award and Management System is available on FTA's website.

 


 

HUMAN RESOURCE PROGRAM

SCOPE CODE

DESCRIPTION

PROJECT BUDGET

ALI
441-20 Human Resource Program
2X.10.00 Personnel – Direct Labor

$ 50,000

2X.13.00 Stipends – Student

15,000

2X.14.00 Stipends – Administrative Staff & Teachers

15,000

2X.20.00 Travel

10,000

2X.50.0 Contractual Services

12,000

2X.40.00 Equipment

15,000

2X.49.00 Supplies (Expendable Items)

5,000

2X.70.00 Other Direct Project Related Costs

6,500

2X.71.00 General Administrative Costs:

3,000

2X.74.00 Conferences: Workshops/Seminars; SpeakersSpeakers, Honorariums; Meetings; Open House Other Direct Expenses

3,500

2X.74.00 Indirect Costs – Overhead
(*Denotes excluded activity line items)

1,500

TOTAL:

$136,500

FTA’s Electronic Award and Management System is available on FTA’s website.

 


TRAINING PROGRAM

SCOPE CODE

DESCRIPTION

PROJECT BUDGET

ALI

441-30 Training Program
50.10.00 Travel

$ 5,000

50.20.00 Tuition/fees

15,000

50.30.00 Housing/Meals

4,000

TOTAL

$ 24,000

FTA’s Electronic Award and Management System is available on FTA’s website.

 

RESEARCH PROGRAM

SCOPE CODE

DESCRIPTION

PROJECT BUDGET

ALI
441-60 Research & Development Program
55.10.00 Personnel – Direct Labor

$ 136,000

55.14.00 Managerial, Technical & Professional

50,000

55.40.00 Equipment

30,000

55.42.00 Material & Equipment Purchase Lease

50,000

55.43.00 Equipment Design or Manufacture

15,000

55.49.00 Supplies

30,000

55.20.00 Travel

10,000

55.50.00 Contractual

56,000

55.82.00 General & Administrative

50,000

55.74.00 Other Project Costs

75,000

TOTAL

$ 502,000

FTA’s Electronic Award and Management System is available on FTA’s website.

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Appendix C: Scope Codes & Activity Line Item Codes

Scope Codes Activity Line Item Codes*
441-00 Statewide Planning
44.22.00 General Development and Comprehensive Planning
44.23.00 Long Range Transportation Planning
44.23.01 System Level
44.23.02 Project Level
44.24.00 Short Range Transportation Planning
44.25.00 Transportation Improvement Program
44.26.00 Planning Emphasis Areas (published with Annual Apportionments), see planning scopes and ALIs for current Emphasis Areas & ALIs.
44.27.00 Other Activities
* The Metropolitan Planning Program and the State Planning and Research Program use the same ALI codes; only the scope code (5-digit code) changes. If the application will also include funding for Metropolitan Planning activities, the Metropolitan Planning scope code, 442-00, should be shown separately along with appropriate ALI codes.

The following Activity Line Item codes (ALI) are used for both Metropolitan and State Planning.

  1. Program Support and Administration (44.21.00)

    Include basic overhead, program support, and general administrative costs directly chargeable to the FTA project, i.e., direct program support, grant administration, interagency coordination, citizen participation, public information, local assistance, UPWP development, etc. (If direct program administrative and support costs are included in each individual work task, do not enter them a second time in this category.)

  2. General Development and Comprehensive Planning (44.22.00)

    Include only the costs of activities specifically emphasizing regional policy and system planning for non-transportation functional areas, including the development and maintenance of related data collection and analysis systems, demographic analysis and non-transportation modeling and forecasting activity, i.e., land use, housing, human services, environmental and natural resources, recreation and open space, public facilities and utilities, etc.

  3. Long Range Transportation Planning (LRTP) - Metropolitan & Statewide (44.23.00)
    1. Long Range Transportation Planning (LRTP) - System Level (44.23.01)

      Include only the costs of activities specifically emphasizing long range transportation system planning and analysis, i.e., long range travel forecasting and modeling including appropriate data base development and maintenance, system analysis, system planning, system plan development, reappraisal or revision, and all long range Transportation System Management (TSM) activities.

    2. Long Range Transportation Planning (LRTP) - Project Level (44.23.02)

    Include only the costs of activities specifically emphasizing long range project level planning and analysis, i.e., corridor and subarea studies, cost-effectiveness studies, feasibility and location studies, and the preparation of related draft environmental impact studies.

  1. Short Range Transportation Planning (SRTP) (44.24.00)

    Include only the cost of activities specifically emphasizing short range transportation system or project planning and analysis proposed in the next three to five years, i.e., management analyses of internal operations such as, management/administration, maintenance, personnel, and labor relations; service planning including appropriate data base development and maintenance; TDP preparation; financial management planning, including alternative fare box policies; all short range Transportation System Management (TSM) activities including vanpool/ridesharing, HOV's, parking management, etc.

  2. Transportation Improvement Program (44.25.00)

    Include only the costs of activities specifically emphasizing MTIP or STIP development and monitoring.

  3. Planning Emphasis Areas (44.26.00) For illustrative purposes, the Emphasis Areas described below are from the FY 2000 Apportionment Notice. The latest Apportionment Notice provides the current Emphasis Areas. See current ALIs for Emphasis Areas
    1. Transportation Equity & Public Involvement (44.26.01).

      Include only the cost to States and Metropolitan Planning Organizations to expand and document efforts to:
       

      1. Expand the focus of public involvement efforts, with special attempts to include the traditionally under-served and under-represented in the planning process; and
      1. Assess the distribution of benefits and adverse environmental impacts at both the plan and project level.
    1. Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) National Architecture (44.26.02).

      Include only the cost of FTA-funded activities to integrate ITS strategies in the planning process, e.g., development of ITS strategies and evaluation of effectiveness.

    2. Preparing for the Year 2000 Census (44.26.03). Include only the cost of activities for states and MPOs to make the transition to American Community Survey data through ancillary work activities, including:
      1. Aligning census geography with transportation analysis geography in their areas;
      1. Conducting origin/destination and home interview travel surveys; and
      1. Expanding travel monitoring programs to develop comprehensive areawide and corridor inventories.
  1. Other Activities (44.27.00).

Include only the cost of those activities whose primary emphasis is unrelated to the specific types of activities described above. Highway-related planning would be included here.

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Appendix D: Certifications and Assurances

As part of its streamlining effort, FTA annually compiles and publishes in the Federal Register a list of certifications and assurances that an applicant for a grant or cooperative agreement must submit in order to qualify for the various Federal financial assistance programs FTA administers. With this list, FTA also publishes a signature page with spaces for the applicant to select the certifications and assurances applicable to the various FTA programs for which it seeks Federal assistance. These certifications and assurances are published with FTA’s annual apportionments. Once published, the certifications and assurances remain valid until the list for the next fiscal year is published. Certifications and assurances, as well as fields for selecting applicable certifications and assurances, are available electronically through the "Cert’s and Assurances" tab page of FTA’s Electronic Award and Management System. Note that FTA Circular 9100.1B, "Standard Assurances," has been canceled. Thus, requirements of the latest published certifications and assurances supersede the requirements of outdated certifications and assurances within that circular.

An applicant's certifications and assurances will apply to any project for which it seeks FTA assistance within the applicable fiscal year. Thus, any certifications and assurances a State has made for a fiscal year will apply to its SPRP grant application submitted during that fiscal year. FTA encourages an applicant to select as many certifications and assurances as needed to qualify for any type of Federal assistance FTA provides. Even if the applicant does provide each certification and assurance required for any FTA program, the applicant will not be held responsible for complying with requirements not specifically applicable to the specific project to be undertaken. As discussed more fully below, an applicant will be responsible for obtaining each subrecipient's compliance with project requirements only the subrecipient can fill.

The State applicant then submits to FTA the list of certifications and assurances selected, properly signed electronically through FTA’s Electronic Award and Management System. Note that the State applicant is then responsible to FTA for both its own and its subrecipients' compliance with the requirements of the certifications and assurances applicable to the specific project, even though some of the requirements must be fulfilled by the subrecipient or another entity.

Consequently, FTA cautions the State to obtain appropriate certifications and assurances from an MPO or any other subrecipient before distributing SPRP assistance to that entity. At a minimum, a State should obtain from each entity seeking SPRP assistance:

  1. All certifications and assurances listed in Category I, and
  1. For awards exceeding $100,000, the lobbying certification in Category II. If the State seeks to use Urbanized Area Formula Program assistance for planning, the State must also provide all certifications and assurances required for that program.

To be valid, the certifications and assurances, must be "signed" ("pinned electronically") by the State's authorized representative and legal counsel, and then submitted through the FTA’s Electronic Award and Management System. This replaces the "Statement of Continued Validity" previously used to renew certifications and assurances made to FTA.

NOTE: FTA’s Electronic Award and Management System is available on FTA’s website.

FTA’s Electronic Award and Management System is available on FTA’s website.

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