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Tribal Leaders Letter - July 28, 2017

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U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration
1200 New Jersey Ave., SE
Washington, D.C. 20590

July 28, 2017

In Reply Refer to: HIN

 

Dear Tribal Leader,

Ensuring tribes have access to the most current and comprehensive transportation training and technical assistance to build tribal capacity is fundamental to the Tribal Technical Assistance Program (TTAP) and to FHWA. In mid-June, we communicated with you about a series of five webinars to solicit your input, seek your opinion, and gain your feedback on a proposed change to how the TTAP is delivered to you to meet those objectives. Many thanks to everyone who participated and provided us with their thoughts and concerns. If you did not have the opportunity to attend any of the webinars to learn about the new model, all the webinars were recorded and are available at https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/innovativeprograms/centers/local_aid/. FHWA gained valuable insight from the feedback we received and very much appreciates all the comments we received. We would also like to thank the Tribal Transportation Program Coordinating Committee (TTPCC) for their invaluable assistance vetting options and helping us shape our thinking. The Committee worked with us to ensure broader input from the tribes was attained during the recent webinars.

With the input we've received from the webinars and our work with the TTPCC, we are ready to proceed to the next phase of implementing the new delivery model for the TTAP. As we described during the webinars, this new model will be a two-year pilot. During the pilot, the TTPCC has agreed to serve as the Advisory Board to the TTAP Center. FHWA will continue to consult with the TTPCC and with the tribes during the pilot to obtain continual feedback on the performance of the new model. FHWA's motivation in exploring this delivery model has one objective in mind: increasing the training and technical assistance provided to the tribes in a way that accommodates tribal and regional differences.

Our goal is to have the pilot contract in place by October 1, 2017. FHWA is revising the Statement of Work and will be issuing a Request for Proposals on the Federal Business Opportunities (FedBizOpps.gov) website. We very much respect and appreciate our ongoing partnership and dialogue with tribes and look forward to your feedback and engagement throughout this pilot program. I and other members of FHWA's Leadership Team will be at the upcoming National Tribal Transportation Conference in Tucson in the latter part of September and I hope to see and meet many of you there.

I would also like to draw your attention to this year's Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for Tribal Colleges and Universities to submit applications that will enable them to recruit students for the Dwight David Eisenhower Transportation Fellowship Program. The NOFO was issued on July 17th and the applications are due August 17th. We encourage Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCU), and Community Colleges (CC) to apply through grants.gov under Opportunity Number 693JJ317NF0008. These fellowships provide students with opportunities to pursue transportation-related education preparing them to enter careers in transportation.

This letter will be followed by others to keep you informed and engaged with the TTAP and we hope that you find these letters useful. Please feel free to contact our team with questions or comments at CLAS@dot.gov.

Sincerely,

Signature: Victoria Peters

Victoria Peters
Director, Center for Local-Aid Support

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