FMCSA awards $1 million in grants to 9 driver training programs

| 6/13/2008

Officials with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announced this week that the agency has awarded a total of $1 million in grants for CDL training programs at nine technical schools and community colleges.

The grants are “to enhance classroom safety curriculums and behind-the-wheel training courses for students enrolled in commercial driver’s license training programs,” according to an FMCSA press release.

“Our nation relies on a workforce of well-trained, safety conscious, professional truck and bus drivers to move our economy,” said FMCSA Administrator John H. Hill in the press release. “Through this grant program, we are helping provide the cadre of highly qualified commercial drivers that our nation needs. This is also an investment in individuals and in communities seeking enriched economic opportunities for the future.”

To be considered for the annual grant program, programs must be offered by “accredited public and private institutions of higher education, federally recognized Native American Tribal Governments, and city, county and state governments.”

The CMV Operator Training Grant Program, was established by Congress in 2005 as part of the highway funding legislation known as the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act—A Legacy for Users, or SAFETEA-LU. The grant program has two goals, according to the FMCSA press release:

  • to expand the number of CDL holders possessing enhanced operator safety training to help reduce the severity and number of crashes on U.S. roads involving commercial motor vehicles; and
  • to assist economically distressed regions of the U.S. by providing workforce training opportunities for qualified individuals to become CMV operators.

The following institutions were awarded grants for fiscal year 2008:

  • Arizona – $52,663 to Maricopa Community College in Glendale;
  • Arkansas – $87,500 to Arkansas State University in Newport;
  • California – $80,640 to West hills Community College in Coalinga;
  • Illinois – $49,855 to Waubonsee Community College in Sugar Grove;
  • Missouri – $198,087 to Ozarks Technical Community College in Springfield;
  • New York – $120,000 to National Tractor Trailer School Inc. in Liverpool;
  • Ohio – $83,300 to Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland;
  • Pennsylvania – $127,955 to Lehigh Carbon Community College in Schnecksville;
  • South Carolina – $200,000 to Orangeburg-Calhoun Technical College in Orangeburg.