Tampa was awarded $234,281 from the Federal Transit Administration's (FTA) Innovative Transit Workforce Development Program to implement "Meeting Today's and Tomorrow's Job Needs in Mass Transit," a recruitment and training partnership between the Corporation to Develop Communities of Tampa Inc. (CDC of Tampa) and HART. This project will recruit, train and employ up to 30 people in the transit industry, including transit operations and maintenance workers.
"We are excited about the partnership which will help solve a skills training void in the community," stated Ernest Coney Jr., CEO of the CDC of Tampa. "The partnership will result in livable wage jobs and career paths that will continue to transform Tampa/ Hillsborough into a vibrant and strong community."
The CDC of Tampa is the direct recipient of the grant, and is one of 17 organizations in 12 states to share $7 million from the FTA Innovative Transit Workforce Development Program. The purpose of the grant is to help local public transit agencies, institutions of higher education, nonprofit organizations and Native American tribes train a future generation of transit professionals, with particular emphasis on promoting training opportunities in emerging technologies and encouraging young people to pursue careers in public transportation.
"HART will soon begin using new technologies and advanced practices — such as transit signal priority and compressed natural gas vehicles — to keep our local public transit system modern and environmentally sustainable," HART CEO Philip Hale said. "This federal grant will fund a partnership project between HART and the CDC of Tampa that will provide the type of advanced training needed to develop highly qualified candidates to serve the future of public transit."
The CDC of Tampa will provide enrolled candidates with certification-based transit training, job placement services and case management services. HART will work with the CDC of Tampa in developing benchmark standards for training; provide access to training staff and facilities; and assist with the CDC of Tampa's training compliance standards.