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The Comet gets $13.6 million in emergency federal funding

The CARES Act grant will go to help employees, and even purchase a fogger for the buses

COLUMBIA, S.C. — The Comet has received $13.6 million in emergency coronavirus relief funding from the federal government.

The Federal Transit Administration allocated $25 billion to support public transportation during COVID-19.

Executive Director of The Comet, John Andoh, said they have many plans for the money. 

“A lot of it is going to pay our operational contractor costs to operate the transit system. And then we also intend to purchase thermometers, masks and sanitizers, extra detailing on the buses, extra detailing on the bus shelters and testing for each of the employees that operate and maintain our buses as well as the administrative staff,” he said. 

The funding will also be used to pay a safety recognition bonus for employees that worked during the pandemic in the spring.

Andoh said they are also purchasing a few foggers that will be used to disinfect all 88 of their buses weekly.

“We’ll sanitize daily but we’ll fog weekly.”

The FTA says funds can be used for operating expenses to maintain transit services and is meant to help public transportation services prevent, prepare for, and respond to COVID-19.