Anoka County is applying for federal funds via the Minnesota Department of Transportation to conduct a study of the transportation needs of seniors and people with disabilities.

The Anoka County Board June 26 approved a resolution authorizing and directing county staff to prepare a grant application to secure funding through the MnDOT Office of Transit.

The study, which would be done by a consultant, would have an estimated $150,000 price tag.

The county is requesting $120,000 in federal dollars with a local 20 percent share of $30,000 to come from the county tax levy or transportation tax funds.

According to the resolution, there is a need to study and evaluate transportation services in Anoka County to identify better efficiencies of existing services, current gaps and potential expansion.

It would also help identify barriers to transportation services for seniors and people with disabilities and provide transit mobility options.

The study will not only focus on existing transit services in the county available to seniors and people with disabilities, but also the needs of different county departments — for example the human services division, which works with seniors and those with disabilities on their transportation issues, said Joe McPherson, assistant county engineer.

According to Commissioner Scott Schulte, who chairs the Transportation Committee, the study will offer the county better ways of providing transportation where there are gaps, for example, through public-private partnerships.

“All options will be on the table,” Schulte said.



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