Pierce Transit to grant retiring vehicles to local non-profit organizations

Pierce Transit is undertaking a new “Care-a-van” program that aims to grant retiring vanpool vans and SHUTTLE vehicles to non-profit organizations in Pierce County.

Federal rules require the transportation agency to retire vehicles based on certain life and mileage requirements, according to Pierce Transit officials. However, many of those vehicles still have thousands of miles and many years of life on them.

“We are very pleased to provide this important resource to our community,” said Pierce Transit CEO Sue Dreier. “So often groups and organizations want to help get people to their location, or to medical appointments or social events – they just need a vehicle to do so. The new Care-a-van program will be a win-win for Pierce Transit and our community.”

Community groups granted the vehicles will provide a variety of services for people with special needs, according to Pierce Transit officials. The vehicles might be used for everything from delivering meals to homeless individuals, providing mobility for low-income seniors, and transporting citizens with disabilities to jobs. Retiring vehicles sold at auction usually net a few thousand dollars for Pierce Transit. Organizations granted these vehicles will provide valuable transportation services and a cost-savings to the agency through reduced ADA-eligible trips, according to Pierce Transit officials.

To be considered to receive a retiring vehicle, non-profit organizations must show they will provide a number of trips worth equal to or greater than the vehicle’s value, and that they will cover maintenance and insurance costs. Groups granted vehicles will also be required to submit monthly reports documenting the number and types of trips provided. Once they meet these requirements, the non-profit agencies will receive the vehicle’s title.

The deadline for applying for the two vehicles available in this round of grants is Mon., March 21. Applications are available online at piercetransit.org/care-a-van.