Steamship Authority to receive $8.4 million in federal coronavirus relief funds

Posted: April 29, 2021

FALMOUTH (April 29, 2021) – The Woods Hole, Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket Steamship Authority will receive $8,390,258 of additional coronavirus relief funding from the federal government after reaching an agreement with the Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority regarding disbursement of the funds.

The funding comes from the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA), and the amount was determined by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) urbanized area formula funding. The Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority (CCRTA) is the designated recipient for those funds for the local region.

In 2015, the Steamship Authority was approached by the CCRTA regarding eligibility to participate in the National Transit Database (NTD) program for possible funding opportunities from the FTA. With the assistance and guidance of the CCRTA, the Steamship Authority was accepted to participate in the NTD program. Since then, the Authority has tracked and submitted data related to its activities, both statistical and financial, to the NTD.

At its April 20, 2021, meeting the Authority Board authorized General Manager Robert B. Davis to execute a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the CCRTA regarding use of the funds. The MOU, which now has been signed by both parties, stipulates that the CCRTA will reimburse the Authority for up to 100% of the additional CRRSAA funding resulting from the Authority’s direct transportation reporting to the National Transit Database. The funds can be used to finance certain projects and services, including defined eligible operating expenses.

Unlike nearly every other public transit agency in the country, the Steamship Authority receives no annual state or federal subsidy and is funded nearly 100% through its fare box collections.

“The Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority has been outstanding partners with the Steamship Authority since our inclusion in the National Transit Database program, and this agreement is another example of that,” Davis said. “Being able to access these funds will be a valuable resource to the Authority as it faces continued uncertainty due to the effects of the coronavirus on travel demands. I am grateful to CCRTA Administrator Thomas Cahir and his staff for their invaluable and ongoing assistance.

“In addition, we wish to extend our graditude to the Commonwealth’s federal delegation, and in particular to U.S. Rep. William Keating, for their assistance in making these funds available,” Davis said.