Sections 1201 and 1202 Statewide/Nonmetropolitan and Metropolitan Planning Questions & Answers
Question PL-1: What are the significant changes to the Metropolitan and Statewide Planning process in MAP-21?
Answer PL-1: MAP-21 introduces a number of changes to the Metropolitan and Statewide Planning process including:
- Within two years of enactment of MAP-21, MPOs serving an area designated as a transportation management area must include, among others, officials of public agencies that administer or operate major modes of transportation, including representation by providers of public transportation. The requirement to include providers of public transportation was added in MAP-21. (23 USC 134(d)(2))
- The establishment of a performance-based planning process: MAP-21 requires Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) and States to establish performance targets that address national performance measures established by the Secretary that are based on the national goals outlined in the legislation. Five years after enactment of MAP-21, the Secretary is to provide Congress with a report evaluating a number of items, including, among other things, the overall effectiveness of performance-based planning as a tool for guiding transportation investments and the technical capacity of MPOs in an area less than 200,000 and their ability to carry out the requirements of this section.
- The option for MPO's to develop scenarios: MPOs may elect to develop multiple scenarios for consideration in development of the metropolitan transportation plan. If the MPO chooses to develop these scenarios, it is encouraged to consider a number of factors, including, among other items, potential regional investment strategies and assumed distribution of population and employment. (23 USC 134(i)(4))
- The option for States to establish and designate Regional Transportation Planning Organizations (RTPOs): States may establish and designate RTPOs. RTPOs shall be established as a multijurisdictional organization, comprised of volunteer nonmetropolitan local officials or their designees and volunteer representatives of local transportation systems. The RTPOs can assist the State in addressing the needs of nonmetropolitan areas. (23 U.S.C. 135(m))
Further direction on these changes will be coordinated and provided by FHWA and/or FTA at a future date.
Question PL-2: If a Transportation Management Area (TMA) is designated by the Secretary at the request of the Governor and the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) under Section 1201 of MAP-21, but the TMA is under 200,000 in population, would the TMA receive STP funding under Section 1108 of MAP-21 attributed to population, similar to TMAs over 200,000 in population?
Answer PL-2: No. If an area requests designation as a TMA, but does not meet the 200,000 population threshold, the area can still be designated by the Secretary as a TMA on the request of the Governor and the MPO under Section 1201 of MAP-21. Such designation would not change the amount of funding received by an area through STP suballocation as specified in Section 1108 of MAP-21, revising 23 USC 133(d)(1)(A).
Question PL-3: What is meant by 23 U.S.C. Sections 134(h)(3) and 135(d)(3), as revised by MAP-21 Sections 1201 and 1202, regarding the failure to consider planning factors or performance information in any matter affecting a transportation plan, a Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) or Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP), a project or strategy, or the certification of the planning process?
Answer PL-3: These provisions mean that FHWA, a State, or an MPO cannot be sued specifically on matters relating to the eight transportation planning factors, or the performance-based approach to transportation planning as it relates to a statewide or metropolitan transportation plan, a STIP or TIP, a project or strategy, and/or certification of the planning process. FTA has similar provisions in 49 U.S.C. Sections 5303(h)(3) and 5304(d)(3), as revised by MAP-21 Sections 20005 and 20006.
Question PL-4: What changes were made regarding project selection in MAP-21?
Answer PL-4: The provisions for project selection in MAP-21 are essentially the same as they were in SAFETEA-LU. However, for certain projects there is a new requirement for regional transportation planning organizations (RTPOs) to be involved, if applicable. For non-National Highway System (NHS) projects (excluding projects carried out under the bridge program or Interstate maintenance program) carried out in areas with population less than 50,000, the State is required to select projects from the approved STIP in cooperation with the affected nonmetropolitan local officials with responsibility for transportation or, if applicable, through RTPOs. (MAP-21 § 1202, revising 23 USC 135(g)(6)). Project selection refers to the selection of projects from the STIP/TIP for implementation (obligation), not the selection of projects to put into the STIP/TIP.
Question PL-5: Who has project selection authority under MAP-21?
Answer PL-5: In TMA areas, the State, in cooperation with the MPO for the area, has project selection authority for all projects on the NHS system. For other Title 23 projects and transit projects in TMA areas, the MPOs, in consultation with the State and any affected public transportation operator, have project selection authority. (MAP-21 § 1201)
Within non-TMA MPO planning areas, the State has project selection authority for projects under Title 23 in the STIP/TIP, and the designated recipients of public transportation funding have project selection authority for the transit projects (projects under chapter 53 of Title 49). In both of these instances, the selection is made in cooperation with the MPO. (MAP-21 § 1201)
For areas with populations less than 50,000, the State, in cooperation with the affected nonmetropolitan local officials with responsibility for transportation or, if applicable, through regional transportation planning organizations, has project selection authority; except that for projects on the NHS or funded with any remaining funds from the Highway Bridge or Interstate Maintenance Programs, the State, in consultation with the affected nonmetropolitan local officials with responsibility for transportation, has project selection authority. (MAP-21 § 1202)
Question PL-6: What is the State Planning and Research (SPR) funding formula under MAP-21?
Answer PL-6: The SPR funding formula is a set-aside of 2% of the state's National Highway Performance Program, Surface Transportation Program, Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program, and Highway Safety Improvement Program funds. (MAP 21 §52005; 23 U.S.C. § 505)
Question PL-7: What is the Metropolitan Planning (PL) apportionment formula for FY 2013 and 2014 under MAP-21?
Answer PL-7: The PL apportionment formula under MAP-21 has changed from the formula contained in SAFTEA-LU. The States now will get their total lump sum program apportionment, and a calculated multiplier will be applied thereafter to determine PL amounts. The multiplier is the ratio of a State's FY2009 PL funds to its FY2009 Total Apportionment. This replaces the previous 1 ¼ percent set-aside from core programs that was apportioned to the States based on urbanized area population. (23 U.S.C. 104(b)(5), MAP-21 § 1105)