|As used in the other Canadiana Pages, ISTEA stands for "Intermodal Surface
Transportation Enhancement Act". ~ This is 1991 Bush Administration Legislation.
~ For a certain time period it requires States to distribute ten percent of the
Transportation Funds they receive from the Federal Government, to purposes that
meet the criteria spelled out in the Act. ~ These are, in a nutshell, items that
improve the quality of life and are designed to apply to everyone equally. ~
They are to create jobs and economic development, cultural enhancement,
environmental protection, education, tourism, acquisition of and access to
scenic beauty, and the preservation of our history. ~ The requirement is that
projects must meet at least two of the above purposes and must be transportation
related. ~ A sailing S. S. Canadiana can apply itself to all areas. ~ The
criteria fits like a glove.
New York State set up an autonomous review board to judge the merits of the
various applicants for these ISTEA funds. ~ It was designed specifically to meet
Federal criteria only and is as far from political "pork" as you can get
with government funds. ~ Even before we received the award, we recognized
it as one of the nicest pieces of legislation to ever come out of the federal
government in the sense that it was designed to provide the most benefit to the
most people, across the board and with no qualifications attached. ~ This is
what governments should be doing all the time.
non-governmental organization, our group needed to obtain "sponsorship" from any
New York State governmemt or agency. ~ This sponsorship provided us with the
needed "officialdom" as required by New York State. ~ They just don't hand over
$400,000.00 without some supervision. ~ Sponsors are required to handle bidding
proceedures, oversee environmental concerns, insure the expenses are legitimate,
etc. ~ We could have asked any city, town, village, parks department, etc. ~ We
asked the City of Buffalo and they accepted the job.
The review board is
comprised of professionals with working ties to the areas of the ISTEA criteria.
~ They are educators, environmentalists, etc. ~ These people, from across the
state, review all the cases presented to them and rate each according to a point
system. ~ Applicants end up in a rank based on the size of their request, the
amount of money the applicants themselves will supply, the number of criteria
the applicant connects with, the amount of broad-based appeal the project can
demonstrate and various other details such as having a self-sustaining ISTEA
roll over ability, projects that are in immediate need and where applicable, as
in this case, the project must also be included in the Municipal Planning
Organizations Master Plan for their area.
The S. S. Canadiana has it all
and came out on top. ~ Our application for $400,000.00 was awarded and was the
largest single amount of available funds. ~ From over 100 applicants, we were
chosen number one with thirty three other recipients. ~ These professional
individuals, who comprised the review board, took six full months to learn and
study the details. They saw all that the Canadiana was and all it could offer
our area and so they chose to send the money to us here in Buffalo and Western