Charlie Crist announces $19.6 million for PSTA electric infrastructure

sunrunner PSTA
PSTA expects the grant to fund about 14 electric buses and 14 new depot chargers.

Rep. Charlie Crist has announced that the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) has been granted $19.6 million from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to purchase additional electric buses and charging infrastructure.

The funding includes an $18.4 million grant from the FTA that PSTA expects to fund about 14 electric buses and 14 new depot chargers.

“As a region that is uniquely susceptible to the effects of climate change, I commend Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority for their commitment to providing and expanding public transportation that is clean, green, and efficient,” Crist said in a statement. “With this new federal investment, PSTA is doing their part to deliver the electric vehicles of the future, improve air quality, and expand public transportation. A win-win-win.”

Crist also secured an additional $1.2 million in Community Project Funding for PSTA in the government funding bill to support the purchase and installation of on-route chargers for electric buses.

“As PSTA continues toward its goal of a zero-emissions fleet by 2050, we are extremely grateful for Congressman Crist and the (Joe) Biden administration for recognizing and investing in clean infrastructure and alternative modes of transportation,” Pinellas County Commissioner Pat Gerard, chair of the PSTA Board of Directors, said in a statement. “Each step we take toward a sustainable future is helping fight climate change.”

The Department of Transportation has given $243 million in Fiscal Year 2021 for its Buses and Bus Facilities Program, from which the $18.4 million grant was awarded.

“This is truly a transformative investment in our clean infrastructure,” Brad Miller, Chief Executive Officer of PSTA, said in a statement. “Through this electric vehicle investment, we are ensuring that Pinellas County residents and visitors benefit from cleaner air as we move toward a more sustainable, carbon-free energy system. PSTA is proud of our reputation as an innovative agency, and this investment will symbolically and literally move us forward.”

Back in December, PSTA approved an $80 million expenditure spread over the next five years for 60 electric buses, advancing the transit agency’s effort to run on a green fleet by 2050.

Kelly Hayes

Kelly Hayes studied journalism and political science at the University of Florida. Kelly was born and raised in Tampa Bay. A recent graduate, she enjoys government and legal reporting. She has experience covering the Florida Legislature as well as local government, and is a proud Alligator alum. You can reach Kelly at [email protected]

One comment

  • Ron Ogden

    March 18, 2022 at 10:08 am

    Oh, brother! That’s $100 million in federal money in the last few weeks to fund that boondoggle PSTA–and by the way to help Beltway Dems keep south Pinellas safely blue. But all the taxpayer money in the world won’t put fannies into seats.

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