2019 Coordinated Public Transit-Human Services Transportation Plan for the Chattanooga-Hamilton County/North Georgia TPO area
The TPO Executive Board approved a major update to the coordinated plan on June 26, 2019. The TPO will continue to perform annual reviews of this plan leading up to the next major update.

What is the coordinated plan?

The Coordinated Public Transit/Human Services Transportation Plan (“coordinated plan”) for the Chattanooga-Hamilton County/North Georgia Transportation Planning Organization (TPO) is a transportation planning document that identifies the transportation needs of individuals with disabilities, seniors, and people with low incomes; provides strategies for meeting those needs; and prioritizes transportation services for funding and implementation through the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) Section 5310 Enhanced Mobility for Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities federal funding program. In a nutshell, this plan helps the TPO and area partners prioritize how the federal funding allocated to our area through the Section 5310 program can most effectively be distributed to meet the specific transportation needs of transportation disadvantaged populations.

The Chattanooga Area Regional Transportation Authority (CARTA) is the designated recipient of 5310 funding for the TPO area but is able to sub-allocate funding to eligible sub-recipients. The appendices of the coordinated plan (link above) include documentation about what it means to be a designated recipient as well as details about the designated recipient selection process.

What stakeholders are involved in this process?

The TPO convenes a committee of stakeholders from across the region that are involved in the Coordinated Plan update and review process and the Section 5310 project selection process. This committee, called the Human Services Transportation Committee, meets quarterly to engage in these discussions. Currently, the committee includes representatives from nearly two dozen distinct public, private, and nonprofit agencies in the TPO area as well as representatives of seniors and individuals with disabilities.

Anyone interested in joining the HST committee can reach out to the TPO for more details about the commitment involved. All committee meeting agendas and minutes are transcribed and available to the public upon request. New members are brought on to the committee annually at the Human Services Transportation Symposium, which is typically held in late spring. For more information, contact Caroline Daigle at cdaigle@chattanooga.gov or (423) 643-5947.

For information about available transportation services, you can call the Southeast Tennessee Area Agency on Aging and Disability hotline at 866-836-6678 or the Area Agency on Aging of Northwest Georgia (coordinated by the Northwest Georgia Regional Commission) hotline at 1-800-759-2963. The Coordinated Plan also contains tables and descriptions of currently available transportation services in the TPO region.

What is the annual Human Services Transportation Symposium?

In April 2017, the TPO hosted the first ever annual Human Services Transportation Symposium for the CHCNGA region. The purpose of the symposium was to improve coordination between public, human services, and for-profit transportation providers to better meet the transportation needs of senior, disabled, and low-income individuals. In particular, the symposium focused on improving coordination across jurisdictional boundaries, specifically between Tennessee and Georgia, Cleveland and Chattanooga, and urban and rural areas. The 2017 annual review of the coordinated plan was conducted as part of the symposium. Minutes and a list of individuals invited to the symposium are available in the appendix of the plan, which can be found here.

The second annual symposium was held in May 2018 as part of the 2019 update to the coordinated plan. This symposium had the same goal of facilitating coordination across agencies and organizations working to address the transportation needs of seniors, individuals with disabilities, and people with low incomes in the TPO area. Minutes from the 2018 symposium are included in the appendix of the 2019 coordinated plan update (link above).

What is the Section 5310 Call for Projects? How do I submit an application for 5310 funding?

The TPO, in coordination with the designated recipient, CARTA, holds calls for projects for Section 5310 funds. Any organization whose activities and programs qualify it as an eligible sub-recipient of 5310 funding is able to submit an application to request 5310 funding for eligible projects. Click here to review FTA guidelines about eligibility for this grant program.

See the links below for additional information about the call for projects:

Related links

FTA 5310 Circular

This document contains detailed information about the Section 5310 funding program and the type of projects/activities that are eligible to receive funding through this program. We recommend that any agency looking for funding opportunities to address the transportation needs of seniors, people with disabilities, and low-income individuals review this document for an overview of the federal grant program. TPO staff is available to help answer any questions from partner agencies or community organizations interested in this program.

CARTA Program Management Plan for 5310 Funding

As the designated recipient of 5310 funding for the TPO area, CARTA is required to develop a Program Management Plan to outline their plan for grant management. This document gives an overview of CARTA’s responsibilities as the designated recipient, which include notifying eligible local entities of funding availability, developing project selection processes, determining project eligibility, and ensuring that all sub-recipients comply with the requirements outlined in the federal grant.

2017 FTA Slideshow: Current Trends and Innovations in the 5310 Program

This is a slideshow presentation that the FTA presented via webinar at the 2017 annual symposium. It provides an overview and summary of current trends and innovations related to the 5310 funding program as well as Mobility on Demand programs. It can be a helpful resource for people looking to learn more about federal transit funding opportunities and ongoing initiatives.

If you have any additional inquiries about the Coordinated Plan, the Human Services Transportation Committee, or the Section 5310 program, please contact Caroline Daigle at cdaigle@chattanooga.gov or (423) 643-5947.