Published December 21, 2015
SAULT STE. MARIE, MICHIGAN — The Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians Tribal Transportation Program has been awarded a $300,000 competitive Federal Transit Administration (FTA) Tribal Transit Grant. The funding is aimed at building and strengthening partnerships throughout the tribe’s service area to meet the transportation needs of its most vulnerable members.
The grant will fund start-up and operating costs associated with the Sault Tribe Regional Transit Project to collaborate with current transportation providers on expanding routes and schedules, upgrading services with additional fixed routes and expanding schedules to ensure reliable and equitable transportation access throughout the tribe’s seven-county service area in Chippewa, Luce, Mackinac, Delta, Schoolcraft, Alger and Marquette counties. Current transit providers include Eastern Upper Peninsula Transit Authority, Marquette-Transit, Alger Country Transit Authority, Schoolcraft County Transit, Delta Area Transit Authority, Chippewa Luce Mackinac Community Action Agency, St. Ignace Transit Committee and Indian Trails.
Sault Ste. Marie Tribal Chairperson Aaron Payment
Sault Tribe Chairperson Aaron Payment expressed his appreciation.
“Helping our tribal members and other locals get to appointments, work, shopping and fulfilling other transportation needs improves the quality of life in our rural community,” he said. “I am grateful for the hard work and diligence of Wendy Hoffman, Sault Tribe transportation planner.”
Transit in the tribe’s seven-county service area consists of local and inter-city service. Six of the seven counties provide some form of local public transit services with the exception of Mackinac County with no transportation service. The tribe’s transit project will directly improve access to critical services such as health, education, employment and social services. The grant provides the opportunity for inter-agency collaboration, marketing, website development, point of contact services, and establishing a regional transit workgroup to build capacity and collaboration for supporting ongoing regional coordination among existing providers and Sault Tribe.