Federal Transit Administration
The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) is an agency within the United States Department of Transportation
United States Department of Transportation
The United States Department of Transportation is a federal Cabinet department of the United States government concerned with transportation. It was established by an act of Congress on October 15, 1966, and began operation on April 1, 1967...

 (DOT) that provides financial and technical assistance to local public transit systems. The FTA is one of ten modal
Modal may refer to:* Modal , a textile made from spun Beechwood cellulose fiber* Modal analysis, the study of the dynamic properties of structures under vibrational excitation...

 administrations within the DOT. Headed by an Administrator who is appointed by the President of the United States
President of the United States
The President of the United States of America is the head of state and head of government of the United States. The president leads the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces....

, the FTA functions through a Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C., formally the District of Columbia and commonly referred to as Washington, "the District", or simply D.C., is the capital of the United States. On July 16, 1790, the United States Congress approved the creation of a permanent national capital as permitted by the U.S. Constitution....

, headquarters office and ten regional offices which assist transit agencies in all states, the District of Columbia, and the territories. Until 1991, it was known as the Urban Mass Transportation Administration (UMTA).

Public transport
Public transport
Public transport is a shared passenger transportation service which is available for use by the general public, as distinct from modes such as taxicab, car pooling or hired buses which are not shared by strangers without private arrangement.Public transport modes include buses, trolleybuses, trams...

ation includes bus
A bus is a road vehicle designed to carry passengers. Buses can have a capacity as high as 300 passengers. The most common type of bus is the single-decker bus, with larger loads carried by double-decker buses and articulated buses, and smaller loads carried by midibuses and minibuses; coaches are...

es, subways
Rapid transit
A rapid transit, underground, subway, elevated railway, metro or metropolitan railway system is an electric passenger railway in an urban area with a high capacity and frequency, and grade separation from other traffic. Rapid transit systems are typically located either in underground tunnels or on...

, light rail
Light rail
Light rail or light rail transit is a form of urban rail public transportation that generally has a lower capacity and lower speed than heavy rail and metro systems, but higher capacity and higher speed than traditional street-running tram systems...

, commuter rail, monorail
A monorail is a rail-based transportation system based on a single rail, which acts as its sole support and its guideway. The term is also used variously to describe the beam of the system, or the vehicles traveling on such a beam or track...

, passenger ferry
A ferry is a form of transportation, usually a boat, but sometimes a ship, used to carry primarily passengers, and sometimes vehicles and cargo as well, across a body of water. Most ferries operate on regular, frequent, return services...

 boats, trolleys
A tram is a passenger rail vehicle which runs on tracks along public urban streets and also sometimes on separate rights of way. It may also run between cities and/or towns , and/or partially grade separated even in the cities...

, inclined railways, and people mover
People mover
A people mover or automated people mover is a fully automated, grade-separated mass transit system.The term is generally used only to describe systems serving relatively small areas such as airports, downtown districts or theme parks, but is sometimes applied to considerably more complex automated...

s. The federal government, through the FTA, provides financial assistance to develop new transit systems and improve, maintain, and operate existing systems. The FTA oversees grants to state and local transit providers, primarily through its ten regional offices. These grantees are responsible for managing their programs in accordance with federal requirements, and the FTA is responsible for ensuring that grantees follow federal mandates along with statutory and administrative requirements.


In 1962, President John F. Kennedy
John F. Kennedy
John Fitzgerald "Jack" Kennedy , often referred to by his initials JFK, was the 35th President of the United States, serving from 1961 until his assassination in 1963....

 sent a major transportation message to the U.S. Congress. It called for the establishment of a program of federal capital assistance for mass transportation. Said President Kennedy: "To conserve and enhance values in existing urban areas is essential. But at least as important are steps to promote economic efficiency and livability in areas of future development. Our national welfare therefore requires the provision of good urban transportation, with the properly balanced use of private vehicles and modern mass transport to help shape as well as serve urban growth."

President Lyndon Johnson signed the Urban Mass Transportation Act of 1964
Urban Mass Transportation Act of 1964
The Urban Mass Transportation Act of 1964 provided $375 million for large-scale urban public or private rail projects in the form of matching funds to cities and states. The Urban Mass Transportation Administration was created...

 into law, which passed the House by a vote of 212-to-129 and cleared the Senate 52-41, on July 9, 1964, creating the Urban Mass Transportation Administration. The agency was mandated to provide federal assistance for mass transit projects, including the initial $375 million in capital assistance over three years mandated by the act. In 1991, the agency was renamed the Federal Transit Administration.


The current FTA Administrator, since May 2009, is Peter M. Rogoff. Below is a list of past Administrators.

  • Paul L. Sitton, 1966–69
  • Carlos C. Villarreal, 1969–73
  • Frank C. Herringer, 1973–75
  • Robert E. Patricelli, 1975–77
  • Richard S. Page, 1977–79
  • Theodore C. Lutz, 1979–81
  • Arthur E. Teele
    Arthur Teele
    Arthur "Art" Teele was an American lawyer and politician who belonged to the Republican Party. Born into a wealthy black family in Florida, Teele received an excellent education and became a highly respected officer in the US Army and went on to a very successful career in private practice and...

    , 1981–83
  • Ralph L. Stanley, 1983–87
  • Alfred A. DelliBovi
    Alfred A. DelliBovi
    Alfred A. DelliBovi is an American banker and political figure who has been President of the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York since 1992.-Biography:...

    , 1987–89
  • Brian H. Clymer, 1989–93
  • Gordon J. Linton
    Gordon Linton
    Gordon J. Linton is a former Democratic member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives.From 1993–99, Linton was the head of the Federal Transit Administration, a position officially known as Administrator.-References:...

    , 1993–99
  • Nuria I. Fernandez (acting), 1999–2001
  • Jennifer L. Dorn, 2001–2006
  • James S. Simpson
    James Simpson (government official)
    James S. Simpson is commissioner of New Jersey's Department of Transportationand a former federal government official and moving company executive....

    , 2006–2008

Notable programs

External links

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