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Gov. Evers announces $5 million investment into rural transit

Investment to serve seniors and individuals with disabilities

Black River Industries (BRI) of Medford is one of 44 agencies across the state that will received transportation grants in 2023.

Gov. Tony Evers, together with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT), on Tuesday announced that 44 agencies that provide transportation services for seniors and individuals with disabilities in rural areas of Wisconsin will benefit from more than $5 million in state and federal funds in 2023.

BRI will receive a grant of $103,788, for the replacement of a handicapped accessible bus.

“Whether it’s getting to and from work, seeing family and loved ones, or visiting the doctor, every Wisconsinite— regardless of their age, ability, or ZIP code—should have access to reliable, affordable transportation,” said Gov. Evers. “For folks in our rural communities, we know that providing and having access to these essential services can often be a challenge. These grants will strengthen Wisconsin’s network of support, and we are grateful for the additional boost provided by the federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.”

“Thank you to all the agencies across the state who are working with us to improve our transportation services for seniors and those with disabilities,” said Wis-DOT Secretary Craig Thompson. “Good transportation infrastructure means everyone has opportunities for mobility.”

Enacted on Nov. 15, 2021, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) provided WisDOT with an increase of funds for the 5310 Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities Program for five years beginning in 2023.

A complete list of the grants, which total $5,097,376, can be found on the WisDOT Specialized Transportation website.

The 5310 Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities Program awards grants to local public bodies and private, non-profit agencies. Since it began in the 1970s, the program has helped fund the purchase of more than 2,200 vehicles in Wisconsin. The funding also supports agencies’ mobility management and operating assistance.

Under federal transportation law, the cities of Milwaukee, Madison, Appleton, and Green Bay administer the federal 5310 Program for their geographic areas. They coordinate with WisDOT to ensure the continuity of the application and project selection process.