Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation

MERIT- Statewide Transit Grants Program


MERIT-Making Efficient and Responsible Investments in Transit- is the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation's (DRPT) statewide public transportation grants program.  This program provides financial assistance to support Public Transportation and Transportation Demand Management (TDM) services throughout the state and is designed to support DRPT's core mission:

"To facilitate and improve the mobility of the inhabitants of Virginia, and to promote the efficient transport of goods and people in a safe, reliable, and cost effective manner."  

The MERIT program consists of the following individually administered grant programs:

Fiscal Year 2021 (FY21) MERIT Program Application Guidance:

The FY 2021 DRPT Grant Application Guidance contains detailed information on the goals, eligibility requirements, eligible expenses, and application process for all DRPT administered grants programs.  The applications for all DRPT administered grant programs are available through the OLGA portal.

FY21 MERIT Application Process:

Key FY21 MERIT Application Dates:

  • November 2019: DRPT hosts a series of statewide grantee workshops in advance of the annual grant application period.

  • December 1, 2019: The FY21 grant application period opens.

  • February 3, 2020: Applications are due for all statewide and federal grant programs.

  • February-April 2020: DRPT evaluates applications.

  • April 2020: Applications are due for FTA Section 5303 funds.

  • April-May 2020: DRPT completes application evaluation and develops the draft Six-Year Improvement Program which contains funding for public transportation and commuter services programs and services. 

  • June 2020: The Commonwealth Transportation Board adopts the Six-Year Improvement Program, and DRPT notifies applicants of approved grants.

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