Tribal Transportation Program Questions & Answers
Question 1: Where can I get access to the final legislation?
Answer 1: The legislation is known as the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act, Public Law 112-141. The acronym is MAP-21. The legislation, along with additional information, can be found on FHWA's website at: http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/map21/.
Question 2: Is the Indian Reservation Roads (IRR) Program included in MAP-21?
Answer 2: The IRR program is not provided new funding under MAP-21. However, the newly established Tribal Transportation Program (TTP) contains similar provisions and eligibility requirements as the IRR program.
Question 3: What is the authorized funding level for the Tribal Transportation Program?
Answer 3: The TTP is authorized at $450 million/year, which is subject to the overall Federal-aid obligation limitation.
Question 4: How will the TTP funds be administered and distributed?
Answer 4: The TTP funds made available will be administered in accordance with Chapter 2 of Title 23. MAP-21 contains a statutory formula which replaces the Relative Need Distribution Factor (RNDF) formula included in Subpart C of 25 CFR Part 170. The new formula will calculate tribal shares using three different factors (as percentages of national or regional totals):
- 27% of funding based on the Tribe's approved road mileage (national percentage)
- 39% of funding based on the Tribe's most recent Native American Housing Assistance and Self Determination Act (NAHASDA) population (national percentage)
- 34% of funding based on the Tribe's RNDF and Population Adjustment Factor (PAF) amounts from FY05 to FY12 (regional percentage)
MAP-21 contains a set-aside for another factor which will be included in a Tribe's share of TTP funds. The Tribal Supplemental Allocation, which totals approximately $104 million, will be utilized initially within each Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) Region to supplement those Tribes that experience a negative impact from the new statutory formula in any year when compared to the funding a Tribe received under the old formula in Fiscal Year 2011.
TTP funds are 100% Federal share, and like IRR funds, can be used to satisfy local match requirements on construction projects.
Question 5: What inventory is used for determining a Tribe's road mileage?
Answer 5: The mileage used to generate a Tribe's share of funding includes the following:
- Any BIA owned road included in the FY12 Inventory;
- Any tribal owned road included in the FY12 Inventory; and
- Any road owned by another entity that was included in the BIA System of Roads utilized to generate funding prior to October 1, 2004. These are generally known as "grandfathered roads."
Question 6: Are there any other funding set-asides?
Answer 6: Yes. MAP-21 includes set-asides for the following programs:
- 2% for Transportation Planning
- 2% for Tribal Bridge Program
- 2% for a Tribal Safety Program
- 6% for Program Management and Oversight (PM&O)
The PM&sO is used by BIA and FHWA to carry out stewardship and oversight of the program, including those functions that are deemed as being "not otherwise contractible" per Appendix A to Subpart E of 25 CFR Part 170.
Question 7: Is there a transition in implementing the new formula?
Answer 7: Yes. In FY13, 80% of the net funding will be incorporated into tribal shares utilizing the RNDF formula of 25 CFR Part 170, while the remaining 20% will utilize the new statutory formula of MAP-21. In FY14, the percentages change to 60% (RNDF) and 40% (MAP-21). In FY15, they change again to 40% (RNDF) and 60% (MAP-21). In FY16 and thereafter, the tribal shares will be calculated utilizing 20% (RNDF) and 80% (MAP-21).
Question 8: How will funding get to the Tribes?
Answer 8: The funds will be apportioned to FHWA. FHWA will withhold the funding amount associated with the Tribes operating under FHWA/Tribal TTP Program Agreements and will then re-allocate the remainder to the BIA.
OTHER PROGRAMS AND ACTIVITIES
Question 9: Does the IRR High Priority Program (IRRHPP) continue?
Answer 9: MAP-21 includes a new Tribal High Priority Program (THPP). The IRRHPP under 25 CFR Part 170 will need to be revised to reflect the new MAP-21 program. However, the THPP and the IRRHPP are very similar. The THPP is not contract authority. An appropriation is needed from the general fund before funding can be made available for the THPP.
Question 10: Are there additional transportation planning requirements in MAP-21?
Answer 10: The transportation planning requirements of the IRR Program continue in the TTP. Funds must only be expended on projects and activities identified on an FHWA approved Transportation Improvement Program (TIP). Road Inventory data will continue to be a major part of transportation planning. However, MAP-21 will now require the inspection of all public bridges, including tribal bridges, and the reporting of data into FHWA's National Bridge Inspection System (NBIS), which will be another planning effort.
Question 11: How will the new Tribal Safety Program function?
Answer 11: Two percent of the authorized funding will be made available to tribes to carry out safety specific activities and projects. The exact procedures and guidance will be developed in coordination with the TTP Coordinating Committee.
Question 12: Will the IRR Bridge Program Continue to operate under its current regulations?
Answer 12: Yes, the TTP Bridge Program will function in the same manner as the IRR Bridge Program established in SAFETEA-LU.
Question 13: Can Tribes use TTP funds for maintenance?
Answer 13: Yes, in accordance with 25 CFR Part 170 and MAP-21, Tribes may use up to 25% of their TTP funds or $500,000, whichever is greater, for eligible and approved maintenance activities. These activities must be included on the Tribe's TIP approved by FHWA.
Question 14: Is Question 10 (25 C.F.R. 170, Appendix C to Subpart C) still a factor in the TTP funding formula?
Answer 14: No. The tribal shares generated by the TTP funding formula are not influenced by Question 10, which is obviated by MAP-21.
Question 15: Does FTA provide public transit assistance to Indian tribes?
Answer 15: Yes. MAP-21 continues the Public Transportation on Indian Reservations Program, also referred to as "TTP," under Chapter 53 of title 49, but now includes funds to be allocated by formula. MAP-21 authorizes $25 million in formula funds and $5 million for discretionary awards.
FTA will issue interim guidance and publish its plans for consultation with Indian tribes and stakeholders in October.http://fta.dot.gov/grants/13094_3553.html
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