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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, Office of the Secretary, Office of Public Affairs, Washington, DC 20590

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, July 31, 2002
Contact: Jim Pinkelman
Telephone: 202-366-0660
FHWA 35-02

U.S. Transportation Secretary Mineta Invites Americans To Comment on Future Surface Transportation Programs

U.S. Transportation Secretary Norman Y. Mineta today asked individuals and groups across the country to take advantage of a new online service to express their opinions and offer ideas as the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) prepares its proposal to Congress on reauthorization of the nation's surface transportation programs.

For the first time ever, USDOT is providing an Internet-based site for individuals and groups to go online and submit comments, ideas and analyses regarding reauthorization. The Department also invites comments that can be submitted in writing.

"As we develop new proposals for our surface transportation program, we want to hear from our state and local partners, the private sector and all those who are interested in meeting the transportation challenges of tomorrow," Secretary Mineta said. "The new Web site and the traditional vehicles we have provided will enable stakeholders and citizens everywhere to submit ideas and comments, which will be valuable resources as we move forward with the reauthorization process."

The current legislation, the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21), was enacted in June 1998. TEA-21 expires on Sept. 30, 2003, and Congress and the Bush Administration are working to develop its successor.

USDOT also has produced a brochure that provides a message from the Secretary, a list of TEA-21 accomplishments and the Department's core principles for reauthorization as well as information on participation by individuals and groups in helping to shape these surface transportation programs. The brochure, http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/reauthorization/mtnc.htm America's Surface Transportation Programs: Meeting the New Challenges, and a Federal Register notice formally seeking comments on the reauthorization of surface transportation programs can by viewed on the Internet.

Participants are encouraged to use the Web site to submit comments online. They can do so by logging on to http://www.dot.gov/ and clicking on "Surface Transportation Reauthorization." Written comments may be sent to the Docket Clerk, USDOT, Room PL-401, Docket Number OST-2002-12170, 400 Seventh St., SW, Washington, DC 20590. To order a copy of the brochure write to: Public Affairs, Room 10416, U.S. Department of Transportation, 400 Seventh St., S.W., Washington, DC 20590.

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