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INTERAGENCY AGREEMENT
BETWEEN
THE U. S. FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE
AND
THE FEDERAL HIGHWAY ADMINISTRATION
RELATING TO PUBLIC ROADS ON THE NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE SYSTEM


  1. PURPOSE
  2. This Interagency Agreement between the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) documents the processes and responsibilities of each agency in meeting the requirements of Title 23, United States Code (23 U.S.C.) relating to public roads in the National Wildlife Refuge System. This agreement also includes provisions for assistance by the FHWA on roads under the jurisdiction of the FWS which are not funded under 23 U.S.C. 204.

  3. AUTHORITY
  4. The Department of the Interior, acting through the FWS, in fulfillment of its statutory responsibilities under the Act of October 15, 1966 (16 U.S.C. 668dd), as amended and supplemented, must engage in a continuing program of planning, programming, construction, reconstruction, and improvement of public roads on the National Wildlife Refuge System (refuge roads), including bridges, and appurtenances, in connection with the administration of the National Wildlife Refuge System.

    The Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21), amends 23 U.S.C. as noted below:


    Title 23 U.S.C. 204(f) provides that all appropriations for the construction and improvement of each class of Federal lands highways shall be administered in conformity with regulations and agreements jointly approved by the Secretary of Transportation and the Secretary of the Interior.

  5. RESPONSIBILITIES
  6. The FWS is responsible for:


    The FHWA is responsible for:


    To avoid duplication of services and costs, and in accordance with the provisions of 601 of the Act of June 30, 1932, (47 Stat. 417), Section I of the Act of August 27, 1958 (72 Stat. 914), and 23 U.S.C. 308, the FHWA shall be available to perform architectural services, transportation planning assistance, research, engineering studies, traffic engineering services, project development, and construction contract administration.

    The FWS Regional Offices and the FHWA Division Engineers shall jointly determine respective responsibility for execution of the approved program. Based upon the approved program of projects, both agencies shall jointly agree on a division of program responsibility and will provide the necessary supervision for carrying out the project execution as herein defined.

    All requests for FHWA technical assistance on projects being administered by the FWS will be in writing from the FWS Regional Engineer, with the concurrence of the Refuge Program, to the appropriate FHWA Division Engineer.

    The design and construction of projects will be in accord with applicable provisions of 23 U.S.C.; applicable FHWA and FWS statutes, regulations and agency procedures; and applicable portions of the latest edition of the Standard Specifications for Construction of Roads and Bridges on Federal Highway Projects or approved state or local highway agency specifications.

    For those activities and projects administered by FWS, the FWS Regional Engineers, in coordination with Budget Office, Division of Contracting, and the Refuge Program will:


    For those activities and projects administered by the FHWA , the FHWA will:


    4. FUNDING AND REPORTING

    For funding the projects of the Federal Lands Highway Program being administered by the FWS:


    The FWS shall furnish reports for the portion of the Federal Lands Highway Program administered by the FWS including:




    For refuge road projects administered by the FHWA, the FHWA will provide summary information on obligation and expenditure of refuge road funds.

    For the portion of FWS-funded projects administered by the FHWA, the FHWA shall furnish reports including:


    5. PROGRAM MANAGEMENT

    The FWS and the FHWA shall exchange information concerning any claims or litigation arising as the result of, or in connection with a project. When the FWS is the Contracting Officer, the Department of the Interior Board of Contract Appeals shall have jurisdiction. When the FHWA is the Contracting Officer, the Department of Transportation Contract Appeals Board shall have jurisdiction.

    Right-of-way, railroad agreement, and utility adjustment matters will be the responsibility of the FWS, unless otherwise agreed upon with respect to a particular project.

    Interagency program and policy review meetings shall be conducted as necessary. Information for such meetings will include the following:

    The FWS will provide:


    The FHWA will provide:


    Following the program and policy review meetings, and upon written request from the FWS, the FHWA will approve the program of Federal Lands Highway Program projects, or changes thereto, and allocate the funds authorized. Necessary program changes and modifications in the Federal Lands Highway Program shall be submitted to the FHWA for reprogram approval.

    The FHWA shall be responsible for presenting budget and program information regarding the Federal Lands Highway Program to the Congress as required. The FWS and the FHWA will cooperate in collecting information and preparing reports as may be required.

    6. PARTNERING AGREEMENTS

    In addition to the provisions of this agreement, the two agencies may enter into supplemental agreements, including program Partnering Agreements covering asset management systems, eligibility guidelines and policies relating to this program. Possible agreements include:


    Respective FHWA Federal Lands Highway Divisions and FWS Regional Offices may enter into such supplementary or ancillary regional agreements as may be appropriate and mutually agreed regarding details of planning procedures and implementation of the approved program; provided, however, that any such regional agreements shall be in conformity with this agreement and applicable laws and regulations, and no such regional agreement shall be deemed to supersede this agreement.

    7. EXECUTION AND EFFECTIVE DATE

    This agreement is not intended to fix procedures to be followed so rigidly as to prevent logical and practical actions by the agencies, but rather to formulate a general, uniform procedure, as required by 23 U.S.C. 204, applicable to the implementation of the refuge roads program.

    The FHWA and the FWS personnel are encouraged to confer during the various phases of program development and implementation to agree on matters that fall within their respective jurisdictions and responsibilities. Matters that require consideration at higher levels should be referred to appropriate offices within each agency.

    This agreement shall become effective on the date of the last approving signature. Renegotiation of this agreement or any part thereof shall be by mutual concurrence in writing.

    Signed, Original signed by:___________________________
    Director, Fish and Wildlife Service
    Date 4/2/99 ____________
       
    Signed, Original signed by Kenneth R. Wykle_____________
    Federal Highway Administrator
    Date 4/12/99 ____________


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