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RULE §31.37Rural Transportation Assistance Program

(a) Purpose. The Rural Transportation Assistance Program (RTAP) will foster the development of state and local capacity to meet the training and technical assistance needs of rural public transportation systems.

(b) Objectives. The RTAP will develop training and training materials to improve the quality of information and technical assistance available to local transit operators, develop networks of transit professionals, and support the coordination of public, private, specialized, and human service transportation services.

(c) Eligible recipients. Private consultants, universities, nonprofit organizations, state transit associations, state agencies, and transit operators are eligible to receive RTAP funds.

(d) Program development and project selection. Budgetary requirements for the annual RTAP program of projects will be determined by the department. The department retains final approval for all RTAP projects. Projects will be selected as follows.

  (1) Research and statewide technical assistance projects may be competitively advertised and evaluated by department personnel. The department will establish evaluation criteria specific to each project to be funded under this paragraph.

  (2) Requests from individual transit operators for technical assistance funds will be reviewed and evaluated by the director, or the director's designee, based on the following criteria:

    (A) the demonstrated need for technical assistance, examples of which may include, but are not limited to, agency training plans and resolutions from local governments requesting feasibility studies;

    (B) the applicant's capability to benefit from technical assistance;

    (C) anticipated benefits of the project that can be replicated or used by other transit operators in the state;

    (D) evidence of local support for the proposal, if applicable, which includes, but is not limited to, resolutions by local governing bodies and endorsement letters from other organizations or individuals; and

    (E) the availability of funds.

(e) Local matching requirements. The department may require RTAP subrecipients to defray a portion of project expenses either through cash payments or in-kind donations if:

  (1) a match requirement will allow the department to extend RTAP benefits to a broader audience; or

  (2) the benefits of a project are limited to that RTAP subrecipient and cannot be replicated or used by other transit operators in the state.

Source Note: The provisions of this §31.37 adopted to be effective August 11, 1994, 19 TexReg 5876; amended to be effective February 15, 2001, 26 TexReg 1365; amended to be effective February 21, 2008, 33 TexReg 1380; amended to be effective November 21, 2013, 38 TexReg 8253

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