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Draft OCTC Resolution 2016-13: Air Quality Conformity Determination

OCTC Notices 2016

July 27, 2016

This is a reminder that the Orange County Transportation Council (OCTC) Policy Committee (formerly the Executive Committee) will meet on Tuesday, August 2, 2016. The meeting will begin at 1:00 pm in the 2nd Floor Conference Room at 33 Airport Center Drive, New Windsor. It is recommended that all members attend this meeting as there will be discussions about repurposing earmarks and the National Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) for MPO Coordination and Planning Area Reform, both of which affect OCTC. Please see below for a brief summary of these topics.

A meeting agenda and a meeting summary from the June 21, 2016 meeting are available via the links provided. Please contact staff by phone or email with questions or special needs.

The draft documents and their respective resolutions can be found below. The public comment period regarding Air Quality Conformity Determination and the OCTC Federal Fiscal Years 2017-2021 Transportation Improvement Program will run through July 29th. Written comments are welcomed by mail, email or fax (contact information below).

Draft OCTC Resolution 2016-13: Air Quality Conformity Determination
Draft OCTC Resolution 2016-14: FFY 2017-2021 TIP Adoption

Policy Committee members: Please RSVP to OCTC staff in order to ensure a quorum. If you are unable to attend and plan on sending a representative to vote in your stead, please send a written designation in advance or have your voting representative bring a written designation to the meeting.

Repurposing Earmarks
The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2016 allows States and territories to repurpose certain earmarked funds. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has issued guidance regarding repurposing earmarks that meet all of the following criteria:
• Meets the definition of an earmark – funding that was been dedicated to a specific project in a specific location, given in a provision of law
• Authorized or designated on or before September 30,2005.
• Administered by the FHWA
• Less than 10 percent obligated or the project has been completed and closed as of December 18, 2015 and has remaining unobligated funds eligible for repurposing.

For an eligible earmark to be repurposed, it must meet the following criteria:
• Type of Project – the repurposed funding must be obligated on a Surface Transportation Block Grant Program (projects must be on the Federal-aid system)
• Location of Project – project must be within 50 miles of the original earmark
• Period of Availability – must be obligated on or before September 30, 2019
• Federal Share – the maximum Federal share is the same as originally provided for the earmark funds

The NYSDOT has until August 29, 2016 to submit to FHWA a completed request for repurposing earmarks. OCTC should submit all comments regarding the repurposing of Orange County earmarks as soon as possible to be included in the State’s submission. This repurposed funding would likely best be used on projects that are currently underway and underfunded. Project sponsors who have an earmark that is eligible for repurposing are strongly advised to attend the Policy Committee meeting on August 2. Those project sponsors who are unable to attend should contact Ashlee Long to schedule a separate meeting to discuss their earmark (see contact information below). Members may have received information from advocacy groups or other sources that also address this topic; any questions based upon that information can be addressed at the August 2nd meeting or questions can be sent to Ashlee Long ahead of time.

Click here for a draft list of earmarks eligible for repurposing in Orange County.

National Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) for MPO Coordination and Planning Area Reform
The NPRM for MPO Coordination and Planning Area Reform was issued by the FHWA and the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and proposes revisions to the transportation planning regulations in order to promote more effective regional planning by States and MPOs. As stated in the NPRM “The goal of the proposed revisions is to result in unified planning products for each urbanized area (UZA), even if there are multiple MPOs designated within that urbanized area. Specifically, it would result in MPOs developing a single metropolitan transportation plan, a single transportation improvement program (TIP), and a jointly established set of performance targets for the entire urbanized area and contiguous area expected to become urbanized within a 20-year forecast period for the transportation plan. If multiple MPOs are designated within that urbanized area, they would jointly prepare these unified planning products.”

This proposed rule would affect OCTC, PDCTC, and UCTC as all three MPOs are included in UZA 89. A small portion of Northern New Jersey is also included in UZA 89. There is currently no language in the proposed rule as to how MPOs navigate state boundaries regarding UZA boundaries. There is a provision that allows the Governor and MPOs to determine if the planning area warrants multiple MPOs within a Metropolitan Planning Area (MPA). The phase in implementation of this proposed rule would take place over two years, with the final rule being published in fall 2016 and MPOs being required to comply by fall 2018. Comments are being accepted on this rule through September 26, 2016. The Association of Metropolitan Planning Organizations (AMPO) is currently compiling comments and questions for submittal.

Please contact OCTC staff with any questions or comments regarding any of the above information.

Orange County Transportation Council
124 Main Street, Goshen, NY 10924
Phone: (845) 615-3840
Fax: (845) 291-2533