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PROGRAM AGREEMENT
    BETWEEN THE
    FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE
    AND THE
     FEDERAL HIGHWAY ADMINISTRATION
              FOR
    HIGHWAY SAFETY

Purpose

The purpose of this Program Agreement (PA) between the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) is to establish the general framework for cooperatively developing and implementing a highway safety program that will reduce the number of traffic accidents, and fatalities, injuries and property damage resulting therefrom, on roads owned by the FWS.

Background

Refuge Roads Program:

The Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21) of 1998 established the Refuge Roads (RR) funding category under the Federal Lands Highway Program.  In 1999, an Interagency Agreement between the FWS and the FHWA was executed to implement the RR program as required in the TEA-21.  The RR program is jointly administered by the FWS and the FHWA.  The purpose of the RR program is to develop a safe and adequate national wildlife refuge transportation system, which provides access for the protection, use and enjoyment of the National Wildlife Refuge System areas.

Department of Transportation (DOT) and FHWA Safety Strategies:

Five strategic goals are identified in the DOT's Strategic Plan 1997-2002. These strategic goals sharpen the focus of the DOT's mission to ensure that the United States (U.S.) has a fast, safe, efficient, accessible, and convenient transportation system that meets the Nation's vital interests and enhances the quality of life of the American people.  Of the five strategic goals, safety is the highest priority.  The DOT provides leadership in transportation safety by undertaking coordinated activities intended to reduce or eliminate transportation related incidents and the resulting deaths, injuries, and property damage.   

The FHWA's 1998 National Strategic Plan has five strategic goals to accomplish its mission of continually improving the quality of our Nation's highway system and its intermodal connections.  As in the DOT plan, safety is the FHWA's highest priority strategic goal.  More than 40,000 Americans die, and 3 million are injured in motor vehicle crashes on U.S. highways each year.  The FHWA's strategic objective for safety is to achieve a 20 percent reduction in the number of highway-related fatalities and serious injuries in 10 years.  Ensuring that it is safe to travel on the highways is a guiding principle throughout all of the FHWA's programs and activities.

Authority

The TEA-21 reinforced the need for proactive highway safety programs on federally-owned lands as follows: 

Title 23 U.S.C. Section 402 states that the highway safety program guidelines promulgated by the Secretary of Transportation shall, to the extent determined appropriate by the Secretary, be applicable to federally-administered areas where a Federal department or agency controls the highways or supervises traffic operations. 

General

The Secretaries of the Departments of Interior and Transportation are committed to improving highwaysafety.  To support this commitment, the FWS and the FHWA agree that it is beneficial for the FWS to implement a highway safety program.  The program is to include, but is not limited to, enhancing safety on FWS roads through:

Goal

This PA is a coordinated activity, building on the existing partnership between the FWS and the FHWA, to fully integrate safety as a basic business principle in all activities jointly undertaken by these agencies.  The goal of this PA is to protect all who recreate, travel, work, and live on national refuge system lands by developing and implementing a highway safety program.  The highway safety program will assist the FWS and the FHWA in prioritizing and programming highway safety improvement programs and projects.


Funding and Staffing

Title 23 U.S.C. Section 204 funding will be made available on an annual basis to operate the highway safety program.  Each agency will allocate sufficient staffing to accomplish the program.

Fish and Wildlife Service's Responsibilities

The FWS will be responsible for:

1) Jointly developing, with the FHWA, a highway safety program that incorporates appropriate portions of Title 23 U.S.C. Section 402 and establishes a safety management system; and

2) Implementing and administering the highway safety program.

Federal Highway Administration's Responsibilities

The FHWA will be responsible for:

1) Jointly developing, with the FWS, the highway safety program; and

2) Providing assistance in implementing and administering the highway safety program.

We the undersigned hereby agree to the preceding terms and conditions and enter into this Program Agreement this __14th___ day of _April_, 1999.

Original signed by:

____________________________________________

(Acting) Chief, Division of Refuges
Fish and Wildlife Service
U.S. Department of the Interior

Original signed by:

Chief, Division of Hatcheries
Fish and Wildlife Service
U.S. Department of the Interior

Original signed by: Arthur E. Hamilton

Program Manager, Federal Lands Highway
Federal Highway Administration
U.S. Department of Transportation

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