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CMAQ Program

Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) Program

Shuttle bus at secaucusThe NJTPA is currently soliciting proposals for grants under the FY 2021-2023 Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) Program, supported by federal CMAQ funds allocated to northern New Jersey. The purpose of this competitive program is to advance readily implementable and innovative projects and services that improve air quality and reduce congestion in the NJTPA’s air quality maintenance and non-attainment areas.  Eligible activities program fall under two categories: Local Mobility Initiatives (Shuttle Services) and Transportation Clean Air Measures (TCAMs).

Questions and answers about the solicitation are provided at the bottom of this page.

Eligibility for the grants is limited to NJTPA member subregions and agencies, Transportation Management Associations, other public agencies and public-private partnerships -- see the solicitation documents at right for details.
The Local Mobility Initiatives program, administered in partnership with NJ TRANSIT, is designed to advance transit strategies that reduce traffic, driving alone and harmful emissions. This program enables the development of financially sustainable and innovative shuttle services that provide increased opportunities for the general public to connect to major transit routes, and provide last mile connections to major destinations. This program also funds vehicle replacements for existing or expanded shuttle services.

  • Operational support

    • Available for new and expanded shuttle services

    • Reimbursement request program for costs associated with shuttle operations administered by NJ TRANSIT

    • Federal Funds may be utilized for three to five years

    • Program requires a 25percent local match for shuttle operations

  • Vehicle replacement support

    • Available for existing and expanding general public shuttle/shared ride services

    • Vehicles procured by NJ TRANSIT

    • NJ TRANSIT is responsible for oversight until vehicle's useful life has expired

    • No local match required for vehicle replacement

Non-shuttle projects compete for funding as Transportation Clean Air Measures (TCAMs) that will reduce pollutant emissions and congestion in the NJTPA region. Successful TCAMs will augment existing environmentally beneficial programs with new and innovative approaches, take advantage of cross-jurisdictional partnerships, have the potential to inspire or support further actions, garner public support and interest, and leverage other funding sources.

  • Proposals can include but are not limited to:

    • Diesel emissions reduction

    • Engine idle reduction

    • Traffic signal optimization

    • Intelligent transportation systems

    • Intermodal freight

    • Bicycle and pedestrian projects

    • Travel demand management

    • Public education

    • Alternative fuels and vehicles

After funds are authorized by FHWA, TCAM project sponsors have a maximum of three years to complete the project. The minimum match for projects is 20 percent from public agencies (Up to 100 percent of funding is available for certain projects subject to federal approval) and 50 percent from private firms. More information on TCAMs is on the the Air Quality webpage.

How to Apply                                                                                                            
The application instructions and supporting documents are here:

 Key dates:
Inquiries due,  April 1, 2020
Thumbnail sketches due, May 6, 2020
Full proposals due, July 23, 2020


  • Questions related to the Local Mobility Initiatives program should be directed to Peter Bilton ([email protected])  

  • Questions related to Transportation Clean Air Measures should be directed to Liz DeRuchie ([email protected])   

Solicitation Questions and Answers

Responses to questions, issued on 3/16/2020 

Question 1: Are county colleges eligible to apply for CMAQ Local Mobility Initiatives? 

Response 1: Yes. As a county entity, county colleges are eligible to apply. Note that the proposed shuttle service must be open and advertised to general public. If the college does not currently provide transportation, it may be beneficial for the applicant to partner with their county transportation agency or transportation management association with experience providing transportation and administering a federal grant. 

Question 2: Is pricing information available for electric shuttle vehicles?  

Response 2: There are currently no electrically powered shuttle buses available under the CMAQ Local Mobility Initiatives. No vehicles are available that meet FTA requirements for Buy America and safety testing.  

Question 3: Can a county apply for CMAQ Local Mobility Initiatives? 

Response 3: Yes, eligible applicants for Local Mobility Initiatives funding include Transportation Management Associations (TMAs), municipalities, and county transportation system operators in the NJTPA region. 

Question 4: Should an applicant submit separate thumbnails for Transportation Clean Air Measures and Local Mobility Initiatives? 

Response 4: An applicant should submit separate thumbnails for each individual project. You may submit multiple thumbnails for both the Transportation Clean Air Measures and Local Mobility Initiatives. 

Question 5: Is the $7.5 million per year funding amount shared between Transportation Clean Air Measures and Local Mobility Initiatives? 

Response 5: Yes, a total of $7.5 million per year is available over the period of FY 2021 – FY 2023 for the CMAQ Program, which consists of Transportation Clean Air Measures and Local Mobility Initiatives. 

Question 6: Is there a local match for replacing vehicles in Local Mobility Initiatives Program?  

Response 6: There is no local match requirement for vehicle replacement. 

Question 7: Can CMAQ funds be used for the design phase of a Transportation Clean Air Measures project? 

Response 7: Yes, a portion of the CMAQ grant can be used for design to support project implementation. In addition, a portion of the CMAQ grant can be used for training staff to operate new technology. However, CMAQ grants cannot be used to maintain a project upon completion. The local match or another source of funding must be used for ongoing maintenance. 

Question 8: Can CMAQ funds be used to support the conversion of a county fleet from gas powered vehicles to electric/hybrid vehicles and to implement the necessary charging infrastructure. 

Response 8: Yes, CMAQ funds can be used to supplement the cost of fleet conversion, however, CMAQ will only pay the differential cost of the electric/hybrid vehicles over the gas-powered vehicles. It does not support the complete cost of the new fleet. It is expected that regular fleet replacement and maintenance costs are already built into the county budgets. CMAQ funds can be used to implement the necessary charging infrastructure. 

Question 9: Can CMAQ funds be used to implement charging infrastructure within a county for public use? 

Response 9: Yes, CMAQ funds can be used to implement charging infrastructure within a county for public use.  It should be noted that the NJTPA has awarded CMAQ funds to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection for electric vehicle infrastructure for the entire NJTPA region. County and municipal governments are eligible to receive grants under the program. https://drivegreen.nj.gov/plugin.html 

Question 10: When does the local match have to be used? 

Response 10: The local match can be used at any time during the project. It is up to the discretion of the project manager.  

Question 11: Can a TCAM grant be matched with in-kind contributions? For example, the installation of equipment has a labor cost. If County staff performs the installation, can that count as, or towards a match?

Response 11: No, it has to be a hard match, non-federal funds.


Question 12: Does NJTPA have any emissions or congestion calculators for bike and ped programs/projects or suggestions on how to calculate a reduction in emissions or congestion?

Response 12: Yes, the NJTPA can assist you in calculating emissions reductions for bike/ ped projects using an assortment of tools. Please keep in mind, such calculations are not required for the thumbnail submission. They would only be required in the full proposal by invitation from the NJTPA.


Responses to questions, issued on 3/19/2020

Question 13: How would an applicant calculate the estimated emissions and congestion benefits associated with a vehicle replacement?

Response 13: Vehicle Replacement is available for existing transit shuttle services that provide an alternative to driving alone or reduce congestion. Therefore, applicants should calculate the current emissions and congestion benefits of the existing service that the new vehicle(s) will serve, using the Emissions Reduction spreadsheet. Be sure to take into account what proportion of riders would otherwise be driving alone, which may be less than 100% of riders. NJTPA staff are available to assist individual applicants with their emissions and congestion reduction estimates.


Question 14: Will the program deadlines be revised in response to COVID-19 (coronavirus)?

Response 14: Yes. In response to the workplace disruption caused by COVID-19 (coronavirus), the NJTPA is extending the deadline of the FY 2021 – FY 2023 CMAQ Program.

New key dates: 
Inquiries due, April 1, 2020 
Thumbnail sketches due, May 6, 2020 
Full proposals due, July 23, 2020
Response to question issued on 3/31/2020

Question 15: Is there more specific information on the types of EVSE that are eligible, or the level of funding that is available for such projects?

Response 15: The current solicitation covers three years of funding @ $7.5M for a total of $22.5M for the three year period of the solicitation. This covers both elements of the program, the Local Mobility Initiatives and the Transportation Clean Air Measures. Funding levels are not assigned by project type. The federal guidelines do include EV projects as eligible for CMAQ funding.

We encourage you to submit your thumbnail(s). After an initial review, the NJTPA will work closely with selected applicants to develop the full proposals.



  • Questions related to the Local Mobility Initiatives program should be directed to Peter Bilton ([email protected])  

  • Questions related to Transportation Clean Air Measures should be directed to Liz DeRuchie ([email protected])