Mason Transit is one of 18 public transportation providers in Washington to receive a portion of more than $5.2 million in newly awarded federal grants for new buses and facility improvements. The Washington State Department of Transportation this week announced the Federal Transit Administration grant recipients, each of which will use the funds to purchase or refurbish buses, equipment or transit facilities. The grants leverage $3.5 million in local matching funds from local transit agencies, a testament to WSDOT’s ongoing partnerships with public transportation providers. The MTA will use the $178,680 grant to refurbish a facility roof. WSDOT’s Public Transportation Division administers annual and biennial state and federal grant awards for transit agencies and other service providers across the state. But this was WSDOT’s first opportunity to award grant funding from FTA’s new Bus and Bus Facilities Program – Section 5339 of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century – MAP-21 – Act. The federal program divided $65.5 among the 50 states, with a requirement of 20 percent local matching funds. WSDOT selected the grant recipients based on the federal program guidelines that recipients are public agencies or private nonprofit organizations that provide fixed-route bus service and special transportation services for people whose options are limited due to their age, income or disability.