Michigan Senators Debbie Stabenow and Carl Levin welcomed Tuesday the announcement of a $1.35 million federal grant to help the City of Muskegon pay for transit buses powered by compressed natural gas.
"This effort will help reduce our dependence on foreign oil and create a more efficient transportation system for the community of Muskegon," Senator Stabenow said.
"This grant will help Muskegon's transit system reduce costs, improve energy efficiency, reduce pollution and better serve its customers," Senator Levin said.
In 2011, the Muskegon Area Transit System began executing a plan to replace its older diesel buses with new vehicles powered by compressed natural gas. The CNG-powered buses are less expensive to fuel and maintain, and CNG burns more cleanly than diesel fuel, reducing pollution.
The funding announced Tuesday comes from the U.S. Department of Transportation's Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery Discretionary Grant Program, commonly known as the TIGER Grant program. The program is designed to invest in road, rail, transit and port projects that meet critical national objectives through a rigorous competitive selection process.