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April 14, 2014

About Fast Mail

Fast Mail is a compilation from the Community Transportation Association of America (CTAA) of the latest news and updates from the Community Transportation industry that delivers timely information, resources, and announcements to our members, colleagues and friends. Please keep us posted on your latest news and developments by emailing your content to



Hundreds of Paratransit & Demand Response providers around the world use in-vehicle technology to keep tabs on their fleets. Many different options are available. However, for most transit agencies it’s a choice between Android tablets and rugged on-board computers. Check out the Infographic listing the distinct advantages of both options!

Around the Depot

New products, documents, upcoming events and training from CTAA's staff

  • Annual Membership Awards: Excellence in Motion
    We are seeking nominations for our 2014 annual membership awards. As a member you can nominate yourself or any other person or organization that is a member for the important work you or one of your colleagues are doing. The award categories are Rural Community Transportation System of the Year, Urban Community Transportation System of the Year, Community Transportation Manager of the Year and State Leadership Award. All awards are due by Noon (EST) on April 24, 2014.
  • CTAA's Important Insurance Partnership with Newtek
    CTAA members of all types can take advantage of an important new insurance partnership with Newtek. Offering the full slate of insurance options, the Newtek insurance partnership represents a vital new opportunity for all Association members to get the best coverage possible, at the lowest rates. Newtek promises quick response to all CTAA insurance queries and in coming editions of FastMail will offer assistance with better understanding the Affordable Care Act and other key community and public transportation insurance issues and concerns. In this age of constrained budgets, don't miss out on the savings Newtek might be able to bring to your organization.
  • Mobility Management Special Conference: Past, Present, Future
    The need for innovative transportation solutions to health care and job-related destinations has never been greater. CTAA's two-day conference (June 9-10) will explore creative responses implemented by mobility management practitioners to expanding options in these areas. Attendees will hear from leaders in the health care and job development fields, engage in discussions and small-group work to identify essential criteria of responsive health care and job access solutions, and through guided design activities, take steps toward charting new avenues for their community. Part of the conference will be devoted to strategies for conveying the value of mobility management activities to community leaders.
  • Tell Us Your Story: The Bus Capital Crisis
    To better tell the story of the bus capital crisis across the nation, CTAA has developed a special google map designed to highlight the impact of bus capital shortfalls on both agencies and states. We need your help to fill out this map and capture the true nature of this crisis. Just email Rich Sampson and share your state or system's challenges with limited bus capital funding.
  • EXPO 2014 Registration Now Open
    The annual Community Transportation EXPO is your chance to join colleagues from around the nation in a setting dedicated to fresh ideas, innovative products and services, networking and learning. The official site for the 2014 Twin Cities EXPO is now live, including registration. Check in regularly for updates on the nation's most important community and public transportation conference.
  • Rural Transportation Insurance
    Welcome to a targeted set of business and financial resources designed to help you acquire the software, hardware, financing, training and technical assistance you need to expand and enhance your transportation operation. Developed in concert with the RouteMatch, all the help and guidance you need is a simple click away. Like any aspect of the rural transportation business, there is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to meeting your insurance needs. CTAA - working with our insurance partner Newtek Insurance - understands that you have a diverse set of insurance needs, and offers an expansive choice of policies for rural transportation service providers. Whether you're a public entity, a not-for-profit corporation or a for-profit business, we have the ability to provide low-cost insurance from multiple highly rated insurance companies. That's why CTAA is working with Newtek, offering you direct access to a premier business insurance agency that can help you.


Porterville Transit System Installs New Technologies, Signage and Amenities to Improve Service

The Capitol Limited

News on federal transportation policy and developments from the Nation's Capital

  • Senators Outline Bipartisan Transportation Bill, but Others Will Have to Find a Way to Pay for it
    Source: Washington Post
    With a crisis looming for transportation funding this year, a bipartisan quartet of U.S. Senate leaders emerged Thursday to say they had outlined a long-term proposal to replace funding that expires Oct. 1. While the four senators - two Democrats and two Republicans - agreed on the principles that would serve as the bedrock for a new transportation bill, they left to others the critical question that has hamstrung transportation for several years: how to pay for it.

The Community Transportation Flyer

Updates from community and public transportation systems from across the country

  • More Rides On the Way for Kent County (Md.) Residents
    Source: Kent County News
    Delmarva Community Transit, a division of Delmarva Community Services Inc., has opened an office downtown to help assist local residents in using public transportation. The One Stop Office is at 315 High St., Suite 203 and is open from 1 to 4 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday. According to a news release, DCT staff will be available to answer questions regarding additional bus service hours, how to read a schedule, how to call a dispatcher to ask for information, how to locate bus stops and how to plan trips to the doctor, shopping, work and more. Staff members are collecting suggestions from local residents regarding how DCT can continue to grow and improve in Kent County, according to the news release.
  • Community Transit (Wash.) Proposes Fall Service Increase
    Source: Mill Creek Beacon
    Due to improving sales tax revenue, Community Transit is planning to add new bus service this fall; the first non-grant-funded service improvements since 2009. The proposal provides more mid-day service and better transit connections; restores an all-day, one-seat connection between Mukilteo and the Lynnwood Transit Center; addresses high demand between Lynnwood Transit Center and Edmonds Community College; and improves efficiency around the Alderwood mall area.
  • Montaño Transit Center Opens in Albuquerque (N.M.)
    Source: Progressive Railroading
    City officials and other dignitaries marked the opening of the Montaño Transit Center in Albuquerque, N.M., which will accommodate New Mexico Rail Runner Express and bus passengers. The facility will serve Albuquerque's growing North Valley and Montaño/Montgomery river-crossing corridor. The pueblo-revival-style rail platform and station cost $7.1 million, of which federal sources covered 78 percent of the total and local sources, 22 percent. New Mexico Rail Runner Express will make seven north and southbound stops at the transit center on weekdays, as well as four on Saturdays and three on Sundays.
  • Antelope Valley Transit Authority expands bus service to the Santa Clarita Valley (Calif.)
    Source: Santa Clarita Valley Signal
    The Antelope Valley Transit Authority is expanding its commuter bus line to include an additional stop in Santa Clarita, according to officials. Starting Monday, April 7, the North County Transporter, a commuter bus that provides service between the Palmdale Transportation Center and the Newhall Metrolink Station, also includes several stops at the McBean Regional Transit Center. The McBean stop will also provide an additional way for Santa Clarita Valley residents to visit or commute to work in the Antelope Valley, said Adrian Aguilar, transit manager for the city of Santa Clarita. The North County Transporter system was developed to work in conjunction with Metrolink rail services, according to Aguilar. "It's a service designed to complement the Metrolink service, so when there's no train running, there's a bus," Aguilar said.
  • Lamers Bus Lines' Wisconsin Intercity Service Grows
    Source: Post-Crescent
    Lamers Bus Lines is expanding its intercity bus service, which already includes routes from Green Bay to Madison and Milwaukee, with a Wisconsin Rapids to Madison-Milwaukee option. The company's route from Wausau to Milwaukee is the oldest, but it added several others in 2011. In addition to the Green Bay-Madison and Green Bay-Milwaukee routes, Lamers offers a Campus Connect route on Fridays and Sundays while schools are in session that includes University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, Appleton, UW-Oshkosh and UW-Madison.
  • Regional Pass Signals New Era of Regional Transit Cooperation in Kansas City
    Source: Olathe Edge
    Beginning April 1, a commuter can use a single pass on any of the four local transit services in the region. Kansas City Area Transportation Authority, Johnson County Transit, Unified Government Transit and the City of Independence all will accept The JO Standard Express Monthly Pass from Johnson County Transit. This multi-agency agreement is one of the first outcomes of the Regional Transit Coordinating Council. This universal pass acceptance is a precursor to a regional pass. A regional pass will be created following the regional fare study that is currently being conducted.
  • Senior Citizen Groups Voice Support for Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority (Mich.) Ballot Proposal Plan
    Source: Ann Arbor Journal
    The rising demand among at-risk older adults in Washtenaw County for door-to-door transportation service is helping fuel support to expand public transit. Many senior citizen groups and advocates are increasingly endorsing the Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority (AAATA) ballot proposal May 6 that would slightly raise property taxes to improve the transportation system. The Ypsilanti Towne Center senior adult high-rise housing facility, Ypsilanti Senior/Community Center and the Ann Arbor Community Center announced their support for the AAATA's plan.
  • Lancaster County (Neb.) Looking to Expand Rural Transit Program
    Source: Journal-Star
    The county's public rural transit manager wants to expand service to individual riders to five days a week rather than the two offered now. Carol Meyerhoff said new legislation has provided additional federal funds for the service, allowing the county to expand it at no cost. The Lancaster County Board will hold a public hearing April 15 on Meyerhoff's request. If the expansion is approved, the program will serve riders Monday through Friday. Meyerhoff expects the service to eventually employ two drivers, up from the one.
  • LANTA Aims to Start BRT Lines Between Allentown, Bethlehem and Easton (Pa.)
    Source: The Express-Times
    The Lehigh Valley's provider of intercity bus service plans two routes it is labeling as enhanced, with an eye on cutting travel times. LANTA hopes by next spring to begin implementing the routes, among the recommendations in a rapid transit study report. LANTA hopes to implement the first two phases within the next three years. In the initial phase, the first route would start as a local route, allowing LANTA to identify the high-demand stops and service areas. Then LANTA would add an express line that only hits the most used stops, O'Neil said.
  • Possible New McLennan County (Texas) Transit District Could Close Gaps in Service
    Source: Waco Tribune
    Local transit officials continue to urge McLennan County leaders to create a combined urban and rural transportation district, which would close the service gaps created by the 2010 U.S. Census Bureau maps and expand bus rides to the entire county. If the county created a combined transit district, Waco Transit System would manage all transportation in the county and receive the state money currently paid to the rural transit provider, Heart of Texas Council of Governments.
  • Shawnee Transit (Ill.) Breaks Ground on New Headquarters
    Source: WSIL TV
    A local transit service is celebrating a new construction project. The Shawnee Mass Transit District held a groundbreaking on Wednesday for their new headquarters in Vienna. The bus service provides transportation to people in Johnson, Union, Pulaski, Alexander and Massac Counties. The transit service was created more than a decade ago. The agency received a $2.2 million grant for a new headquarters in 2009. The state-of-the-art facility will feature space for offices and dispatch. There will also be a large garage to house an expanding fleet.
  • Follow Us on Twitter!
    For all the latest transit industry updates including local system highlights, federal and legislative news follow @CTMag1 and @RAILmag on twitter.


CTAA and Newtek

The Porter's Station

Technical assistance resources, documents and events, including webinars, conferences and training

  • Implementing One-Call/One-Click Services (from the National Center for Mobility Management) (PDF)
    NCMM is soliciting applications for an in-depth training on implementing one-call and/or one-click services for transportation information and potentially eligibility determination and scheduling. Five to seven communities will be selected to receive training through three teaching/discussion webinars (May 8, 15, and 21, 2014; 1:00–2:30 p.m. EDT; closed to trainees only; will be recorded) and one 2-hour, in-person workshop in St. Paul, Minnesota on June 12, 2014 (in conjunction with the Community Transportation Association of America EXPO; open workshop). The instructor for the one-call/one-click training will be Suzanne O'Neill of TransitPlus, developer of the original One-Call/One-Click Toolkit.
  • Now Live: FTA Section 5310 Online Dialogue On Monday, March 31, Easter Seals Project ACTION began an FTA National Online Dialogue designed to gather input on proposed Section 5310 (Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities) grant performance measures. The dialogue will run from March 31 to April 18. FTA will use the information to make decisions about future investment and policies related to Section 5310 providers.

The Whistle Stop

Commentary and analysis on developments in community and public transportation

  • A Critique of "Transit Utilization and Traffic Congestion: Is There a Connection?"
    Source: Victoria Transport Policy Institute
    A recent study, Transit Utilization and Traffic Congestion: Is There a Connection? (Rubin and Mansour 2013) found a positive correlation between public transit utilization (per capita transit trips and passenger-miles) and traffic congestion (measured using the Travel Time Index) among 74 U.S. cities. The authors claim this indicates that transit improvements are an ineffective solution to congestion problems. Their results have been widely publicized. These conclusions contrast with those of other studies which indicate that appropriate transit improvements do reduce traffic congestion. These discrepancies reflect differences in analysis methods and assumptions.
  • Public transit and Attracting Young Professionals
    Source: Milwaukee Business Journal
    It's a sign of the times that several surveys have picked up on: Young workers, accustomed to texting, playing games and reading on smartphones and tablets, would often prefer public transportation that lets them work or play as they travel, saving increasingly precious time and staying tuned in to a hyper-connected world.
  • Why Late-Night Transit Service in Boston, Everywhere Is Necessary
    Source: Boston Globe
    The first reason is the economy. If Boston is going to attract and retain the best young talent in America, we need to understand what they're looking for. They need a transit system that gets them around the city. The second reason is equity. Workers in the commercial third shift, at hospitals, or in hospitality need to get to work and they deserve public transportation. The third reason is safety and public health. If Mayor Walsh rightly seeks to extend Boston's night life, we need to make sure young adults get home safely.

The Information Station

Resources from CTAA

  • Webinar Playback: Non-Emergency Medical Transportation
    On March 27, the National Center for Mobility Management (NCMM) hosted "Non-Emergency Medical Transportation: Emerging Research and Trends." Two important studies were recently conducted evaluating emerging trends in the provision of non-emergency medical transportation, with a particular focus on the Medicaid program. In this Webinar, hosted by APTA's Marlene Connor, CTAA's Dale Marsico and Easter Seal's Mary Leary discussed, in-depth, the import of these vital studies and what each tells us about the future of both NEMT, and community and public transportation.
  • Ahead of the Curve: CTAA's Safety Training Programs Lead the Way
    For community and public transportation operators safety has always been the priority. Recent action by the Congress to include new transit safety requirements in the latest surface transportation law reinforces this industry-wide commitment. To help transit agencies further meet their system safety goals and come into compliance with the forthcoming federal transit guidelines, CTAA has launched the Community Transportation Safety and Security Accreditation (CTSSA) program.

PASS LogoPASS Training is Now Available Online!
The Community Transportation Association of America (CTAA) is excited to announce PASS Basic, the online alternative to its passenger assistance training. Simply by going to you can access the virtual classroom experience through six audio/visual modules which will prepare your drivers to attend the hands-on aspect of PASS training and attain full PASS driver certification.

  • Veterans Transportation Resources
    The National Resource Center for Human Service Transportation Coordination (NRC) has put together a list of resources for transportation (and other human services) issues from the perspective of veterans and military families.
  • Strengthening Inclusive Coordinated Transportation Partnerships to Promote Community Living
    The mission of this project, sponsored by the Department of Health and Human Services' Administration for Community Living is to demonstrate the value that inclusive processes can bring to transportation efforts. The Community Transportation Association of America, in partnership with Easter Seals, National Association of Area Agencies on Aging, and Westat, is developing, testing and demonstrating ways to empower people with disabilities and older adults to be actively involved in designing and implementing coordinated transportation systems.
  • Certified Safety and Security Officer Program
    Also, learn more about CTAA's safety training programs. The mission of this Certified Safety and Security Officer Program is to assist in improving the professional preparedness of public and community transportation officers, and to maximize their ability to provide safe and secure transit service.
  • The Competitive Edge: Making Community and Public Transit the Best Alternative for Medical Transportation: Today there is never-before-seen complexity in the non-emergency medical transportation field. Limited funding combined with growing patient loads has states seeking intermediaries that can control costs through competition. Community and public transportation providers must become efficient, safe, cost-effective and accountable to maintain these important medical transportation services. The Community Transportation Association, in response to requests from its members, is introducing a new initiative -- the Competitive Edge -- which will give community and public transit providers the tools, resources and benefits they need to make them central players in this new medical transportation environment.

Transportation to Work Toolkit The Transportation to Work Toolkit for the Business Community gives businesses the information they need now to assist their employees in achieving a timely, cost-efficient commute that promotes productivity and job satisfaction. Explore the toolkit's flyers, fact sheets, resources and examples of transportation initiatives undertaken by employers nationwide. Each approach is straightforward to launch and simple to manage.

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Richard Sampson
Communications Specialist
Community Transportation and RAIL Magazines
800.891.0590 x729