Gov. Tim Kaine announced his statewide Safe Routes to School program Tuesday for children in kindergarten through eighth grade. Kaine said fewer children walk or bike to school than a generation ago, and he called it a "lost opportunity." He said improving access and safety to let more children walk or bike to school will "enhance the quality of life" and reduce vehicle emissions around schools.
The program will be funded by $13 million in federal funds through 2009. The money was provided for the program under the federal surface transportation program.The Virginia Department of Transportation will administer the grant program and begin accepting applications this winter. A statewide advisory panel will help VDOT review applications.Grants will range from $5,000 to $500,000.