NET Trans to continue service past June 30

Published 5:16 pm Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Citizens that utilize a service provided by the First Tennessee Human Resources Agency will not see any interruption moving forward.
Candace Gump, Deputy Director for Nets Trans, confirmed that transit services provided by the organization would not be impeded due to the organization recently being able to secure funding through the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT). The decision now means that residents in Elizabethton and Hampton, who are part of the Johnson City urbanized area, will not see any service disruption. NET Trans falls under the Johnson City Transit umbrella.
“We are thrilled to be able to continue this service for the future,” Gump said Tuesday afternoon.
Service can continue thanks in part to a new program implemented by TDOT that allows transportation between urbanized areas, titled “Critical Trips”.
The decision has been months in the making after an announcement by NET Trans in April indicated that service for urban-to-urban areas would have to cease due to funding shortfalls.
In the meantime, Sen. Rusty Crowe and Representatives Micah Van Huss, Timothy Hill and Bud Hulsey worked together with TDOT to secure stop-gap funding to allow services to go until June 30 until a decision was finalized.
During the March meeting of the Executive Board and Executive Staff of the Johnson City Metropolitan Transportation Planning Organization (MPTO) passed a resolution to allow First Tennessee Human Resources Agency Executive Director Jason Cody to apply to Federal Transit Admission (FTA) to become a direct recipient of federal funding to service the Johnson City urbanized area.
During March’s meeting, Carter County Mayor Leon Humphrey told the Elizabethton Star that the passage of the resolution was important to allow the entity to continue its service.
“It was critical that this resolution passed today,” he said. “Based on the information I have, TDOT has made clear that we have to make the application for the funding through FTA. The next steps will be, if or when funding is approved, is to come back to this board again to look at different appropriations, if any. As (TDOT rep) Liza (Joffrion) said today, this is an opportunity for us to not see any decreases. We’re hoping there may be additional funds so we can maintain the service we have now plus the possibility of increasing the service area.”
Along with TDOT funding, Gump added that the possibility of receiving is still on the table with TDOT already providing a letter to approve the FTA funding.
“We expect it to be a successful combination to allow us to continue the type of service the public desires,” she said about the funding possibilities.
Residents looking to inquiry about transportation can contact NET Trans at (423) 461-8233

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