THE United States Department of Transportation has awarded the Los Angeles Country Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) $US 1.24bn of American Rescue Plan (ARP) funding.

ARP funds are used to help transit agencies maintain service levels and retain staff in the recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. In 2020, Metro carried 215 million passengers and employed 11,000 staff.

The funding is part of more than $US 30bn for public transport in the American Rescue Plan Act, which was signed into law by president Mr Joe Biden last March. The funding comes from the $US 26.6bn allocated by statutory formulas to urban and rural areas, tribal governments and for the enhanced mobility of seniors and disabled people. The Act also included a further $US 2.2bn for additional transit pandemic-associated needs, which will be awarded later this year.

“This funding from president Biden’s ARP will help keep transit service running, protect transit employees from layoffs and ensure people can get where they need to go,” says US transportation secretary, Mr Pete Buttigieg.