Regional Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle Taxi Service Grant Scheme

The Department of Transport (DoT) administers the Regional Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle (WAV) Taxi Service Grant, which aims to encourage and support the provision of wheelchair accessible taxi services in regional Western Australia.

There are two types of Regional WAV Taxi Service Grants:

  • Grants of up $65,000 to support the establishment of new taxi services where none exist.
  • Grants of up to $45,000 to support existing WAV taxi service providers to replace an ageing WAV taxi, or purchase an additional WAV taxi vehicle to meet demand. 

$260,000 will be dedicated per annum (for four years) towards Regional WAV Taxi Service Grants.

Consultation

The Department of Transport is currently conducting a round of the Regional Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle (WAV) Taxi Service Grant (the Grant) in the Great Southern and Goldfields–Esperance regions.

To better understand the potential viability, demand, and challenges of establishing a WAV service these regions, DoT is looking to consult with the regions’ local communities. 

See the link below to register for a digital forum or phone consultation.

Great Southern and Goldfields–Esperance regions WAV consultation

Successful Grant recipients

In 2022-2023, the Department of Transport awarded $245,000 in grants to on-demand transport operators in five major regional centres to improve their accessible transport service offerings – see below for 2022-23 Grant recipients.

The first round of the 2023-2024 financial year targeted Margaret River, with online and in-person consultation completed in late May 2023 and a Grant awarded in July 2023 – see below for recipient details.

More than one grant may be awarded if a round includes multiple towns (maximum of one Grant per town). Expression of interest applications will be assessed against other applications seeking a grant for the same town. 

Future rounds will be determined based on analysis of usage trends, feedback from local operators and the community. 

2023-24 Grant recipients

Location Operator
Margaret River South West Taxis
Kimberley  Derby Taxi Service

2022-23 Grant recipients

Location Operator
Albany Albany Wheelchair Taxis
Collie Mario's Taxis
Geraldton Associated Taxis
Kalgoorlie Twin City Cabs
Northam Avon Taxis
Media statement: Significant boost for wheelchair accessible taxis in regional WA
Media statement: Boost for wheelchair accessible taxi services around the State

Eligibility

To be eligible to submit an expression of interest (EOI) for the Regional Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle (WAV) Taxi Service Grant (the Grant), you must:

  • be an individual or organisation identified through the community consultation process in your region; and 
  • have been invited to submit an EOI for the Grant by the Department of Transport (DoT). 

If you have not received an invitation from DoT but are interested in the Grant, please contact us at ondemandtransport@transport.wa.gov.au.

Grant round process

Grant locations are determined based on analysis of WAV taxi usage trends and feedback from local operators and the community.

Each Grant round includes the following steps.

  • DoT consults with stakeholders in the Grant region to understand the experiences of people who use wheelchairs when they are travelling around these areas.
  • Relevant stakeholders are invited to participate in a closed expression of interest process, to identify suitable Grant recipients. Applications are made via the SmartyGrants platform, and submissions are open for at least four weeks per round. DoT will work with interested parties to take into account the specific circumstances in each region.
  • Regional WAV Taxi Service Grants Committee assesses all submitted applications.
  • A Grant will be awarded for a region if a suitable application is received.

If you are interested in the Regional WAV Taxi Service Grant, please email On-demand Transport at ondemandtransport@transport.wa.gov.au.

Expressions of interest

Applications for the Grant are made through a closed expression of interest process, submitted via the SmartyGrants online platform.

To apply for the Grant, you will need to prepare a few things.

  • Consider how you will explain your proposed service and demonstrate the ongoing viability of your business proposal.
  • Obtain indicative start-up costs and quotes, including quotes from an engineer certified modification specialist for purchase and installation of WAV equipment (if planning to modify a new vehicle).
  • An Australian Business Number (ABN). 
  • Documentation of your existing affiliation or association arrangement with an authorised ODBS. (Note: this is not mandatory).

You are encouraged to discuss your proposal with the On-demand Transport team before you submit an application – email ondemandtransport@transport.wa.gov.au or call us on 1300 660 147.

Late or incomplete applications will not be accepted. It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure the application is completed with appropriate supporting documents attached.

Approval of the grant does not guarantee DoT will approve milestone payments. 

DoT may contact the applicant to clarify some points or obtain additional information during the assessment period. 

If you have questions about using SmartyGrants, SmartyGrants' Help Guide for Applicants and Applicant Frequently Asked Questions should answer most questions – see links below. 

For further assistance, email On-demand Transport at ondemandtransport@transport.wa.gov.au.

SmartyGrants: Help Guide for Applicants
SmartyGrants: Applicant Frequently Asked Questions

Assessment process

The Regional WAV Taxi Service Grants Committee will evaluate applications and make recommendations for approval to the Minister for Transport. 

The Committee consists of representatives from State Government agencies including the Department of Transport and the Department of Communities.

What funding can I apply for and how can I use it?

There are two types of funding available for the Grant:

  • up to $65,000, to support the establishment of new wheelchair accessible taxi services in regional areas where no services currently exist; or
  • up to $45,000 to support existing WAV taxi service providers to replace an ageing WAV taxi or purchase an additional WAV taxi vehicle to meet demand.

How you can use the Grant funding depends on how you procure your wheelchair accessible vehicle (WAV) taxi. You can either:

  • modify a vehicle (up to three years old) that you already own, or purchase a vehicle to modify with suitable equipment, including a wheelchair hoist and restraint systems; or
  • purchase an existing WAV that is up to three years old and already fitted out with suitable equipment.

All WAVs must meet certain standards and legislative requirements referred to in the Transport (Road Passenger Services) Regulations 2020. Visit Wheelchair accessible vehicles for more information. 

Regional WAV operators often use companies in the Perth metropolitan area to undertake vehicle modifications, and then have vehicle delivered to their location.

Note: used or second-hand equipment, and/or partial installations are not eligible for the Grant.

When will funding be released?

If you purchase an existing modified vehicle, you will receive your payment when the vehicle is ready for the installation of livery and taxi-specific equipment (such as the meter, camera surveillance unit etc.). 

If you purchase a vehicle and modify it yourself, you will receive progress payments in three stages. At each stage, you will need to submit a written quote to the Department of Transport before the funding can be released. The stages are:

  • when the vehicle is purchased;
  • modification of the vehicle to become a WAV (quotes must be from an engineer-certified modification specialist); and
  • installation of equipment to operate a vehicle as a taxi, including taxi-specific equipment.

What ongoing operating requirements do I need to meet to retain the funding?

Successful Grant recipients must maintain operation of a WAV taxi in their region for a period of three years from the date of Grant approval.

To retain the funding, you (or the organisation you represent) must also ensure you remain the sole:

  • vehicle owner;
  • vehicle licence holder; and
  • holder of the passenger transport vehicle (PTV) authorisation.

Note: you must advise DoT if your vehicle ownership, licensing or PTV authorisation situation changes at any point.

Grant recipients must also:

  • familiarise themselves with how to accept Taxi User Subsidy Scheme vouchers;
  • use electronic booking and dispatch equipment for all passenger transport bookings;
  • set fares up to or below the maximum metered fare amount for rank or hail (taxi) trips; and
  • provide a subset of their booking/journey records to DoT electronically through DoTDirect each month.

What passenger transport authorisations do I need to operate?

Grant recipients will need to operate an on-demand transport business to provide WAV taxi services.

To do this, successful recipients will be required to obtain the below authorisations (if you don’t hold these already) and meet their associated responsibilities.

On-demand booking service (ODBS) authorisation

You will need to either:

Passenger transport vehicle (PTV) authorisation

To operate a taxi, your vehicle needs a PTV authorisation in the “on-demand rank or hail” category. You must install all necessary equipment, including:

  • a working fare calculation device (meter) that has been installed in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions;
  • roof light and roof sign that are clearly visible in daylight;
  • external livery (the name of the ODBS); 
  • camera surveillance unit that meets the required standards, and signage on the inside and outside of the vehicle advising passengers that a camera is installed; and
  • taxi plates affixed.

New on-demand rank or hail (taxi) PTV authorisations will be issued with taxi plates. The PTV authorisation holder must also declare that they undertake to attach raised lettering (tactile signage and braille of the taxi plate number) once the taxi plates are received.

Taxi vehicle interiors must display the ODBS: 

Passenger transport driver (PTD) authorisation

All drivers must get and maintain a passenger transport driver (PTD) authorisation.

Please contact On-demand Transport for further details about authorisation requirements for Grant recipients.

Page last updated: Fri Mar 15 2024 1:47:38 PM