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Tribal Consultation Meeting for Tribal Technical Assistance Program (TTAP) - Transcript

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Transcript of the Consultation Meeting on the Tribal Technical Assistance Program

Reno, Nevada - June 25, 2019

FHWA Staff (F)

Tribal Partners (T)

 

TONY FURST (F)

Hello everyone. I hope everyone can hear me okay. Welcome to the second of four consultation sessions for the Tribal Technical Assistance Program or TTAP. Victoria is going to turn off the lights in the back so you can get a better view of the screen up front. I am Tony Furst, FHWA's Chief Innovation Officer, and also the Director of the Office of Innovative Program Delivery. With me is Victoria Peters. She is the Director of the Center for Local Aid Support. The TTAP program is within that Center and that Center is within OIPD. We are here to today to hear from you as we conduct evaluations of the TTAP and decided what the next steps will be and the direction for this program. I will remind you again that we are recording session so please when you speak give us your name, tribal affiliation and your position within the tribe. Also please make sure that you sign-in in the back. We would like to keep a record of everyone that was here. And before I turn this floor over to you, I would like to briefly recap the program and where we are with it.

In 2017, there were seven regional TTAP Centers along geographical boundaries of what you see here in the slide. Three of the Centers were at the end of their five year cooperative agreement. And those 3 centers would have to have their cooperative agreements re-competed in 2017.

The other four centers were through their two base years of their cooperative agreements and into their option years. Normally the five year cooperative agreements were five year agreements with two base years and three option years. So for the four other centers they were into their option years. They had completed their base years. We looked at the agreements and they were all written at different times with different clauses and different start dates. And we looked at the coverage of the centers, both in terms of geography and in terms number of tribes that they served. They we started looking at option that evolved around national options and regional options as you see on the slide here. We reviewed comments and performance of the TTAP. Keep in mind that all of the training data and training hours that you see on these slides were self reported by the TTAP Centers themselves. Each TTAP Center received a budget of $300,000 and as you can see on the slide here the annual training hours by each Center varied not only by Center but over the course of the years. So we took the five year average of all of the seven TTAP Centers and the average was 233 hours per year. Then we took a look at the Local Technical Assistance Program, this is program that is run by the State DOTs for the local public agencies, those LTAP Centers received $150,000 of federal revenues and then match by the State DOTs at a minimum. So, some of the LTAP centers budgets are very comparable, almost exactly, to the TTAP centers. So we decided to compare the LTAP centers that had budgets that were comparable to the TTAP center, at $300,000, and see what training hours they provided. The average for those LTAP centers was 576 hours in training delivered.

From the reviews that we conducted and insuring we are aligned with congressional intent, we settled on the program objectives that you see here. Part of the rational for going with a national model is that it enables us to provide for one center directors rather than seven center directors. And take funds received from that and distribute it into more training. So for first half of 2017 we started looking at and discussing our options with tribal organizations and in tribal meetings. As you can see in this slide, we met multiple times with the Tribal Transportation Program Coordinating Committee (TTPCC) and at different venues and events and held national webinars to discuss the programs, look at options and seek input. Now we have been clearly told this does not constitute tribal consultation, clearly what we did with outreach and engagement did not reach tribal expectations. We hear you which is why we are holding these four consultation sessions. Now for the RFP we issued in August of 2017, it was not done in a vacuum and it was not done without tribal input. We had tribal engagement and outreach when we constructed and built that RFP.

The two year fixed price contract for the pilot of the national model was awarded in December 2017 and it expires this December 2019. The annual funding for that contract is exactly the same as the annual funding provided to the seven TTAP centers. The curriculum focuses on core foundational elements of the transportation program: Planning & Procurement, Safety, Project Delivery, Maintenance & Operations, and Asset & Data Management. It took the national center two and half months to pull all the pieces together and they began to deliver the program in March of 2018. So here is where we are: These are the training hours. The training hours for the former structure you have seen on previous slides. For the year to year comparison, the year one for the pilot is from mid-March 2018 to mid March 2019. Year two is from mid March of 2019 thru May 2019. The column that is most aligned for purposes comparison is the blue line that shows the hours training delivered and that is representative of what the seven centers gave us earlier.

Here is the comparison for training centers training locations we have had over a period of one year. The black dots represent where all of the tribes are located. These red dots indicate where the training has been delivered. So when I show you the green dots it is training delivered from the former centers these are red dots that are training delivered with the pilot. If I showed you where all training was offered, it would be a 1/3 again as many red dots on this screen. The green dots represent where training is delivered by the seven TTAP centers for a one year period as well.

Now we are going to go from a national to a regional comparison. What you see on the right hand side was the best training performance of a TTAP center of the seven for a one year period. What you see right is a one year period in the same region geographical boundaries as the TTAP center for the national model. It also shows the types of courses that were delivered in both of the two scenarios.

This is a dashboard that is available on our website all the time. It shows the metrics for the program. The data that created this has about a two month time lag so it needs to be updated. On it you can see a timeline, you can see the amount of face to face training. In the lower right hand corner, you can see the online training. This is in the future there is a lot of online materials the tribes can take. We understand a lot of tribes do not have access to the internet to enable them to capitalize on this opportunity but there are a lot of tribes that do. In addition we have negotiated with AASHTO for access to their TC3 program which is available to all tribes and we have negotiated access to the National Highway Institute's training and online programs which again are available at no charge to all the tribal community and also to all the local public agencies that are served by an LTAP program.

We realize that numbers do not tell the whole story. We have been receiving feedback and input from the tribes from the moment this pilot began. What you see here are the broad brush strokes of feedback we have been receiving to date from attending different tribal meetings, attending tribal events, conferences we have held and from direct feedback from the tribes. So what we would like to do today is continue this and get your feedback to us on the performance of the TTAP program, it evaluation in your eyes of the program so that we can continue to think through how we develop the model moving forward. And right now I think it is important to reiterate that we have a blank sheet of paper. We have not decided yet the direction this program will take. We need your feedback, we need your input into the direction this program is to take. And as I have said, we have received a lot of feedback from tribal leaders already and we are looking to these consultation sessions to receive more. Not only will we accept all of the feedback we before today, this meeting but written comments can be submitted through July 19th with all of the information you see here. We will leave this slide up during the today's consultation session. And this presentation will be posted to our website. So you can go there and pull the presentation down for yourself Once we have the transcripts for all of these meetings, we will post the transcripts for everyone to take a look at. So again keep in mind the session is being recorded. If you have comments, please go ahead and give us your name, tribal affiliation and your position within the tribe. We would like to start with tribal leaders first and then we will open the floor to anyone. So with that I will stop talking. We have microphones we can get around to you so please when you get ready to comment let us know and we will get you a microphone.

Why don't we start with introductions?

SUE KLECKAR (F)

Sue Kleckar, FHWA, NV Division Administrator

MARK MITCHELL (T)

Mark Mitchell, Former Governor from the Pueblo Tesuque in New Mexico

SCOTT CAREY (T)

Scott Carey, Planner with the Reno-Sparks Indian Colony

DAN LOZAR (T)

Dan Lozar, I manage the Division Engineering and Water Resources for the Confederated Salish Kootenai Tribes

VINTON HAWLEY (T)

Vinton Hawley, I am the Deputy Administrator for the Yerington Paiute Tribe here in NV. Welcome to Nevada.

KEVIN SPOHRER (F)

Good morning everyone I am Kevin Spohrer. I work for Federal Highway Administration Office Tribal Transportation.

ANTHONY SPANO (F)

Good morning. I am Anthony Spano, Tribal Coordinator, Office of Tribal Transportation, Federal Highway Administration.

KIM STUBE (T)

Kim Stube with the Cowiltz Tribe, Transportation Director

MARY BETH FRANK CLARK (T)

Good morning. My name is Mary Beth Clark. I am the Transportation Director at the Nez Perce Tribe.

ELIZABETH CABOT (T)

Good morning. Elizabeth Cabot for the Wrangell Cooperative Association Transportation. Transportation Planner.

BILL WILLARD (T)

Good morning everyone. Bill Willard, Wrangell Cooperative Association Transportation, Transportation Manager.

TIM SEWARD (T)

Tim Seward, ... attorney with Hobbs Straus...

RICHARD PALMER (T)

Good morning. My name is Richard Palmer of the Colville Tribe, Transportation Director.

CONNIE THOMPSON (T)

Good morning. I am Connie Thompson, Transportation Planner for the Fort Peck Tribes.

JOHN HEALY (T)

Good morning. My name is John Healy, Transportation Director Fort Belknap and also president of the Inter-Tribal Transportation Association. Thank you very much.

CLARENCE DANIELS (T)

Morning. Clarence Daniels. Transportation Director for AVCP - Association of Village Council Presidents in Bethel, Alaska.

ANTHONY BRONCHO (T)

Morning everyone. I am Anthony Broncho with the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes, Transportation Director.

LESLIE SANDERS (T)

Good morning everyone. My name is Leslie Sanders at the Trinidad Rancheria. I am the Transportation Director.

DAVID JORDAN (T)

Good morning everyone. My name is David Jordan, Oneida Nation in Wisconsin.

TERRY ALTEMUS (T)

Good morning. My name is Terry Altemus. I am with the planning department of the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians.

DAVE DELIRA (T)

Dave Delira, Public Works Director for the Dry Creek Rancheria in Sonoma County.

KAREN BEDONIE (T)

Good morning everyone my name is Karen Bedonie, I am the Department Manager with Navajo DOT.

RACHELLE BRADLEY (T)

I am Rachelle Bradley, Transportation Planner for the Spokane Tribe in Washington

GREG WYNECOOP (T)

Morning. Greg Wynecoop, Spokane Tribal Roads, Director

CINDI PTAK (F)

Good morning. My name is Cindi Ptak. I am the Managing Director for the Office of Innovative Program Delivery, Federal Highway Administration.

VICTORIA PETERS (F)

Good morning. I am Victoria Peters, Director for the Center of Local-Aid Support, Federal Highway Administration.

TONY FURST (F)

Thank you and welcome again everybody. So, the floor is yours. We are here to receive your comments and feedback as we evaluate the TTAP program and decisions regarding how we proceed forward.

SCOTT CAREY (T)

Thank you. I am Scott Carey with the Reno-Sparks Indian Colony. I am a planner. You know one thing I remember in the initial consultation meetings in 2017. I remember there was a lot skepticism of going from 7 regions to one. I think in our experience the one region has worked out pretty good. One thing I will say is that I do like is the ease of the access to the on-line training programs. I think there is a lot of good technical information in project delivery that is available, and it is pretty easy to use. My complements to FHWA on that. I think one thing and I said this in the classes in the on-line training program. I think one thing would be helpful is more technical training whether it is on-line or in-person for the tribes to kind of work more with the 638 contracts process and project delivery. One thing, here in Nevada we don't really have a local transportation representative. At least within the western Nevada region office.

There hasn't been one in the agency for 8 years now, so we have to work a lot of the time through our western regional office in Phoenix. They are very good, very good people that are knowledgeable, but I think with a lot of staff coming in dealing with 638 contracts in the first time and trying to pick up older projects and keep them going. It is hard to work through that process. I think it would be helpful with the TTAP if we could have more training that is available to project delivery with 638 and BIA regulations. Thank you.

LESLIE SANDERS (T)

My name is Leslie Sanders. I am the Transportation Director for the Trinidad Rancheria and I would like to submit to you a letter from our chairman Garth Sundberg.

The Trinidad Rancheria is a small tribe located in rural Northern California with a growing membership. As our community grows, the tribe is developing and expanding our ability to build, maintain, and operate the transportation facilities that serve our community and are there for the general public.

The decision to carry out eligible transportation design construction, maintenance, transit, and highway safety programs, projects and services is an act of our Tribe's inherent sovereign authority and retained powers of self-government over our lands and our people. Over the years, we have relied heavily on the TTAP to provide professional training and technical assistance in order to build our capacity to manage the transportation program, to explore new technologies and innovative approaches that address the challenges that we face as a small tribe. This resource is an essential part of the federal government's trust commitment to tribes.

The current Pilot is failing to fulfill this commitment. The subject matter is no longer relevant to a tribal context nor does it meet our local or regional needs. The pilot appears to value quantity over quality, producing many "classes" that are of limited use to our transportation program.

The subject matter experts available for technical assistance do not recognize that each Tribal Government is unique and tailor technical assistance to the actual needs of tribal transportation professionals (instead of on broad-brush assumptions). ln short, the TTAP pilot program is a clear example of misplaced effort. It is a waste of trust resources that could easily be used more effectively.

Over the years the TTAP has, for the most part, operated in line with the federal government's policy of self- determination by supporting tribal self-sufficiency in developing transportation systems that meet not only the needs of individual tribes, but also the national interests. We urge you to make this critical course correction to avoid further harm to tribal partnerships and the transportation facilities that we all rely on.

Sincerely Garth Sundberg, Chairman of the Trinidad Rancheria

TONY FURST (F)

Thank you. One of the things I would ask. We have heard as you can see that courses need to be more inclusive of tribal needs and we need to find a way to inform the TTAP on local needs. So, we have heard a lot of what is echoed in your letter before, what I would ask is, this is the TTAP course catalog. It is available on-line. Please take a look at these courses and tell us where the courses are not meeting the needs. If there are course that you think need to be included and are not identified in this course catalog, please tell us what they are.

KAREN BEDONIE (T)

Thank you for the opportunity to give our input at these consultation meetings. My name is Karen Bedonie. I am with the Navajo Nation and my title is the Department Manager with Navajo DOT Planning. Our Division Director was unable to attend this session, he was pulled out to other meetings so he sends his regards and Mr. Silversmith said that they will send an official document to follow up on this consultation. We are one of the larger tribes of the nation. We are a population of about 287,000. We have 27,000 acres of land that covers AZ, NM, CO and UT. We also have a 49% poverty rate and if we could keep the TTAP. We really support it. It does create capacity for our tribal members. It enables us to have a trained knowledgeable staff. We would like to also see a lot more emphasis in safety. It is a high priority for us for the team members that do work directly on the facilities. And it also creates innovation for us. We would like to access more innovative approaches to transportation improvement on our roads. As well, we are looking at best practice. If there's, we would like to see who we could consult with, get some tribal technical assistance best practices on transportation. However, with the program there are several issues that we see. I see a lot of it listed but I will go ahead and include our position. We have taken a lot of the TTAP courses and we would like to see more of the 1, 2, 3, tiered courses like advanced, intermediate, um, basic because we have a variety of stuff that come in. Some are new, some have been there 10 plus years. We would like to have that flexibility and accessibility to training. Right now, our staff are in the advance groups are going to the states like AZ and NM for more of the advanced training. We would also request that the trainings are available to tribal communities. Like our communities are broken down to areas like chapters. We have 110 chapters and we are always getting requests for operators. People that want CDL. That can do the blading in their communities. That can do the maintenance improvement in their communities. So that they can have that self-sufficiency and self- sustainability in their tribal communities. The other thing is there is a lot of inconsistency with the TTAP program. You know we had one university for so many years. We have another one now. Um... We really need to create stability for the TTAP. We would like to see longevity. We would like to go back 5, 10, 20 years and look at the trends and monitor what improvement could be made and it is unfortunate that we get meet trainers and host the TTAP and then the following year they are all gone. Starting the slate clean, starting all over again. And so, keep the consistency there. Make sure that there is one university or a portion of the FHWA program that does administer this program. The instructors also need to be knowledgeable about tribal transportation. A lot of the trainers that have come in were unable to answer the questions that we have. Especially with the new 25 CFR Part 170 that I think it requires as far as inventory. We weren't quite sure what their requirements were. There is no formal documentation or no standardization as far as what we're are looking at to make sure that we are in compliance on our end. The other thing is developing a variety of core courses especially in planning. Planning is quite important. We don't have a lot of tools to help tribal communities navigate the process. So, if there is lots of hand outs, visuals, even spoken in the tribal language, that would be awesome. It's what we are trying to do as well. We would like to see more courses in environmental, like the archeological, biological. Those are areas that really hinder our projects for 3, to 5 to 10 years. We have projects sitting in the TIP that aren't being done simply because of these permitting requirements. We have to deal with FHWA, we have to deal with the State, we have to deal with BIA, we also have to deal with our own tribal programs just to get things completed on these projects. So, if you could assist us and guiding us through that, that would really help us get these projects through. Right of way is also another issue. If there's any type of..., maybe BIA - I don't know who would be people to look at it. Right of way is always a big question mark. People are always trying to figure out what do we do, where do we go, who do we talk to. So that would really help us in that regard. Please make these course college accredited. As we mentioned, we have a 49% poverty rate. We have young people. Young men and women that are willing to join the workforce. They may not be pursuing college education but they do see the value and importance of certification and vocational programs. We have a lot of our young people that are interested in this area of transportation. And the last is if there's a library or research center just for tribal transportation. To do our research and again study some of the trends and look for innovative ways to improve tribal transportation on our reservation. That's all I have. Thank you.

That's a lot. Thank you. That was good.

VINTON HAWLEY (T)

Vinton Hawley Deputy Administrator for the Yerington Paiute Tribe also former Chairman for the Yerington Paiute Tribe and for the National Indian Health Board. One of the things in accepting federal dollars and it was problematic for a period of time. There was policy when we accepted those dollars we had to perform and make policy for Indians within our organization for drug testing. It's all within the federal department of transportation guidelines when we accept those federal dollars, but internally it created a huge, huge mess for us. And that internal process isn't the easiest process so once we accept those understanding that every tribe has its own functions and internal processes and sometimes that hinders our ability to move things forward when we are trying to keep things on the fast track.

JOHN HEALY (T)

John Healy, Transportation Director Fort Belknap - early in the process a couple of years ago in Tucson the tribes spoke about their concern about the lack of tribal consultation when the program was first coming about. Basically, the whole year before that, the lack of consultation with the tribes. I know you say there was consultation, but there was never true consultation. As you know, several of the TTAP centers were wiped out. Basically, putting a lot of people out of work. In our region, our center was in Bismarck and I know there were a few people basically were let go, with letters saying your last day is September 30th. Thank you for your service. Good luck. So that led to a lot of hard feelings right off the bat, there were a lot of tribes that were really questioning this whole process. So, throughout the process as far as the locations of the training. I have asked that question many times, in particularly Montana. Sometimes we don't even hear about the training locations until a week before and the location itself. For instance, a few months ago, actually I think it was a few months ago. It was my first one only because it was in my back yard. I didn't hear about it until a week before first it was supposed to be in Havre at the MDT station and then suddenly got switch to the tribal college, so it was right there. Three of us that went, me and two of my staff went to a three-day training. The instructor she was very good, she was knowledgeable, but she didn't know the history that went on the last 2 or 3 years. She was just a contractor. So, I decided not to shoot the messenger. I did voice my concern a little bit. I think that's the kind of the moral of all these locations. I don't know why these locations were picked sometimes. This past week there were several trainings in Missoula and I don't know how many tribes are going to travel to Missoula, MT for 3 more days. The whole system is a lot different than it used to be. It many mean, we're all reluctant to change sometimes. Sometimes change is good, sometimes it's bad, you know but the way is it is going down, a lot of tribes are dissatisfied.

Thank you.

RICHARD PALMER (T)

Richard Palmer Colville Tribe - I'd like to say that I really agree with what is being said right now. The communications are lacking. Actually, they are not lacking, they are poor. What John is talking about right now, classes are advertised like one week before and then locations are kind of in question. When you get to the class itself a lot of times the communicators or the people giving the class really don't have a background in the community talking about or talking to.

They have no background and then when you question them about where they get their background from, what did they do to get their background, you get "I'm from West Virginia". That's where the location is. That's really a long way away from where the communities are who are getting the information. You look at that map you posted earlier on the wall of where all those Indian nations are, they are all in the west or mid-west. Locations are not good. What John is talking about right now when classes come up they are not advertised. When you show up to the classes there are not very many people. A lot of classes I have been to maybe there is 5 or 6 people in there in the whole class and it's a two-day class. Talk about money being spent, it's been being spent in the wrong way. The tribes have to pay for me to go to a meeting and at that meeting there is only 3 people, what kind of a payback is that? We are talking about the expenditure of funding. The old way, yeah there was a problem with the old way, but the old way fit a lot better than the new way is now. That's all I have thank you.

Thank you.

CONSTANCE THOMPSON (T)

Constance Thompson. I am the transportation planner for the Fort Peck Tribes Northeastern Montana. I'll be submitting written comments. I have about five things that I really have issues with the current program. One of them was the transparency of the contract of how it was selected in the beginning. And like John has stated when we were in Tucson we were woefully informed then that the TTAPS were changing and there would be, you know, everyone would be notified. It took 2 or 3 times to get on the list serve to receive emails for upcoming trainings and on-line classes. I was receiving more information from my state DOT regarding that then I was receiving from TTAP people themselves. You stated 2 or 3 times that we went off the LTAP type of class training, their outreach. We are not LTAP. We are tribal. TTAP is a tribal transportation program. So that is one of the issues we have also with class locations. There was a class located in Glendive MT last year and the trainer sat there for a day and a half and decided he was going to drive the nearest reservation which happened to be my reservation. That was a good hour and a half, hour and 45 min drive. He showed up and he goes "nobody came to my class and I thought I would come to see you since you are the closest tribe to the area". And I told him, "Did you have fun in Glendive MT?" He said, "There is actually nothing there." I said exactly. He said I think this location of this place was because they want tribes from both North Dakota and Montana to come. Right there, EVERY TRIBE is an individual. There is no tribal sensitivity being taken by TTAP. That is one of the issues we have, we are not all the same and that is one of the things that needs to be brought forward the next time there is another program out there. Secondly, I work for the tribe for 14 years in tribal transportation. There is a lot of history, a lot education and a lot of things we need help with. There is a lot of overturn of employees in a lot of tribes. When you don't have a stable base to go back to get that information, that's not beneficial to the tribe. One of the other things we have was, I was reading your website where it stated there was attendees like 2000 people attended, there was 250 people that attended meetings in MT or training in MT. They may have been on-line. I may have not seen, I have not been able to attend any of the trainings in person in MT because of the locations of the areas. That was one of the questions I have, how do you do your head count when you have people attending sessions or your on-line sessions like that? Thirdly, I attended a TTPCC meeting last year in Washington DC, there were questions brought up by the TTPCC committee and they wanted answers. We have yet to receive those answers. So, I am hoping with the evaluations that we are doing for this TTAP pilot program that our concerns are heard and we try to revamp the program to better suit the needs of the tribal communities and reservations. One of the other issues that was brought up at the time, was bringing in a tribal liaison, someone who is willing to speak to tribes, to learn about tribes, the individualism, and what the needs are. Thank you.

Thank you.

UNKNOWN SPEAKER (T)

Unknown speaker. I would like to echo what my neighbors are saying here in MT. We had conference down here and we decided we would go over to Montana. It's was the only way that I found out we would have a training in our area. So, we get we get back home and we found out that we were taking training off the reservation. So, we were talking that these trainings were supposed to be on the reservation. So, we got a hold of Ely. We asked why are you having this in town? I thought this was supposed to be for the tribes. We offered to help you guys out in getting the locations set up. The materials were sent to you. And at the same time the guy that was there said "We really don't have a budget". Well... I said we are here, we'll help you out and we know you guys are just starting out. Just like, you know, we should be compensated here. I get more email from their state than we do from ours. Where I am from eastern Idaho

We don't get a lot here. We want... that was two years ago that there was a training out there. But you know, I think, again is to echo on to what everyone else is saying "that individuals that come out to do training need to be more familiar in the areas", you know we are at and better suit the tribes there, here in Idaho where I am at. But at the same time that is long time ago too, what's going on from the beginning to now, I mean, that was a lot of training. Now that you hear everything that is going on it changes some.

UNKNOWN SPEAKER (T)

Unknown speaker. Just a comment on some of the communication, a lot of times the agencies will send out the DTLL letters. A lot of times that information doesn't get pushed to the department heads or even within. If there is a way if you can include the tribal department or cc maybe. Because we get dear tribal leader letters all the time. With that acronym in itself, people don't hear what it is and the information is not conveyed to the tribes or departments. Our recommendation is that you cc a department head or have it delivered in some other form of communication.

MARY BETH FRANK CLARK (T)

My name is Mary Beth Frank Clark. I am the Nez Pierce Transportation Planning Manager. And to give you a little background about myself is, I was on the NW TTAP advisory committee and I am also the co-chair on the ATNI transportation committee. I am the representative of the TTPCC for Northwest and the reason for being involved especially with TTPCC because of the TTAP and how it was rolled out. Because it was alarming to me, especially on the committee, that we were losing region planning. We were reaching out to our region on different types of training programs and we were being successful. And we were never told that we weren't being successful and so when this came about it was pretty much a very big surprise. I wrote down some notes and I'm going to read it. I worked hard last night. I condensed it from 20 to 10 pages. I appreciate the US DOT initiate tribal consultation regarding the Tribal Technical Assistance Program pilot. In the past TTAP was a significant and valuable service for the native communities regarding the areas in tribal transportation. A training program that Indian country supported and finally conceived in 1991. Today the tribes are faced with this TTAP pilot model that has failed. The following is my feedback for the record. It has disheartened me to experience the blatant disrespect from the federal program that organized the program emphasizes tribal transportation needs without any tribal consultation and/or acknowledgement. Past TTAP centers contracts were terminated without any input from the past TTAP centers and/or tribes. There has been various resolutions from tribes and organizations that have requested formal consultations, before the pilot was even advertised.

These efforts were ignored. Many meetings I have attended throughout the country have provided the federal program that houses TTAP pilot input. This has fell on deaf ears. This new pilot shattered interactions and personalization with stakeholders that was built by the past TTAP. Training locations and dates are set with no communication with neighboring tribes, with short turnaround time schedule to participate. Also, they are planning in a silo. They are scheduled without looking at local activities like ceremonies such as fishing, gatherings and hunting, etc. Numerous tribal participants that did attend mentioned they did have to train the instructor. The instructors had no, or very little experience with tribes. The quality and cultural competency of the instructor and subject matter expert is absent. Subject matter does not meet regional needs. The evaluation is focusing on quantity and not quality. The numbers that are cited in the report on the website are used for training that had one or two people attending.

This is not success, especially when the old TTAP's were required to have a minimum number before the training could occur. The pilot delivery regarding the idea of on-line training is a wonderful concept, however more work needs to be done on the model so it can be successful. The TTAP pilot delivery model is failing and I believe it will fail until we provide meaningful involvement from tribes. This model is not effective. In summary, I see the US DOT to assist in bringing back the tribal technical assistance program purpose. To engage tribes in a steering committee to assist in the future of our program. TTAP is what tribes rely on to full training needs they have regarding transportation. If necessary it may be needed to suspend the program until a solid plan with tribal input is made for the delivery model. A model that is acceptable by the federal agency and tribes. Success can be achieved if we communicate and work together. Thank you.

Thank you. Mary Beth.

GERRY HOPE (T)

Thank you, Victoria. Gerry Hope. Sitka Tribe of Alaska. I am also president of the Alaska transportation work group. I think it is kind of really important. I know that you are trying to steer us to go online to look at data. Either comments you have already. I think some of those comments that are reiterated today perhaps and from other consultations are critical to become comments even though they might not be new that might be revisited. They might be critical. We have a voice. We have concerns. So please bear with us as we reiterate some of the concerns that we have. If there is a higher voice of comments that repetitive, please keep that in mind too. For the Alaska tribal transportation work group. We have an annual symposium once a year and we have been fortunate to have previous representatives from TTAP under that system as well under the pilot. Victoria's attended and solicited comments. There has been questions asked about trainings in Alaska. One or two people raised their hands. But in my conversation and they are usually constructive or polite which appears to be more our traditional culture of respect. However, I have one conversations with attendees. Either they have approached me or I have asked them one-on-one. So, there needs to be an outreach to those tribe. It doesn't necessarily to have to be this pilot program. It doesn't necessarily need to be the previous TTAP program. Perhaps it could be revised model between the two. The previous TTAP program was very effective and there were responses to area. The trainer who resided in Alaska, understood Alaska and the challenges we have. And so that is absent under the pilot program and so I think there needs to be that kind of effort put in it for any kind of revised system of TTAP. Mary Beth had a pretty good point about consideration of suspending it to do a real through evaluation and hear more from tribes about it design. What kind of training needs to be provided. And one more point about location that has been raised before. In terms of location and terms about outreach to the tribes there was I received an announcement of training that was south of us from Sitka or maybe it was Ketchikan. So, I pick up my calendar. I didn't have quick or short notice to be able to revise my work schedule to be able to go to it and the content that wasn't going to be for our tribe anyway. And then so I thought about it for a day or two. I thought I should contact the Ketchikan Indian community to see if there was contact and that he was notified He said no he was not notified. So, they held the training and I talked to him afterward and asked him if they contacted him while they were there and he said no he wasn't contacted while they were there. See, so that's the kind of thing. There are actually 2 tribes in Ketchikan. Kasaan and Ketchikan. Neither of those tribes were contacted from people that I have spoken to from those tribes. They could have assisted in a training facility. they could have assisted in the training what could be about if it was coordinated in advance and they would have been able to assist in getting the word out to those tribes in the southern southeast Alaska region. Prince of Wales has 3 or 4 tribes. Metlakatla is there. A couple of folks from Wrangle that were close by, here so there is a little bit more detail to what the value of communication could be like should be like.

TONY FURST (F)

Thank you I hear what you are saying in regard to getting the information out. All of the courses through 2019, the dates, the locations, and content are on the TTAP website. So, every single course that we are going to be teaching now until the end of the pilot is on the website. We will endeavor to get the word out more aggressively where the training is being held and the location. But if people want to know where we are holding the training and what course and when. It's all on the website.

JOHN HEALY (T)

John Healy - I realize that. But the location and times of those trainings are still wrong. Bad timings for the tribes. For instance, I suggested the trainings be held in eastern MT where we hold tribal regional transportation meetings. That would seem like it would be more beneficial and cost effective, to have a training there not in Glendive where nobody goes.

TONY FURST (F)

We can try to find a way to better tribes on where locations for training should be held. At the last conference, we had we a map available for people to locate with push pins in order to try to identify where they would they would like to see training held. We took that as input. We sent out emails to all the tribes and asking them to "please tell us where you would like to see training held" the feedback we got from that communications was crafted into the equation of where the trainings would be held. We can continue to evolve how we determine where locations are for training and we can seek how we can best and most effectively do that. But we sought by input where we should hold training across the country and we will continue to seek tribal input on where we can hold training across the country. And we have received feedback that training should not be conducted the same time other tribal cultural events in place. We will do everything we can to ensure training program does not conflict with tribal cultural events.

LESLIE SANDERS (T)

Yes, my name is Leslie Sanders. Trinidad Rancheria - Transportation and Land Use Director. I would just like to make a couple of follow up comments. Once again, we are told that the trainings are on the website for 2019 the remainder of the year. The trainings have been on the website for all of 2019. I have been on the website, I have looked at the trainings. None of the trainings that were available in our region were beneficial to what I needed at this point in time. Previously with our TTAP's they would reach out to us. If we had needs, we could reach out to them and say, you know, we are having this issue, what can you provide us? And whether they did a training for the entire region or they if just provided us one-on-one service, this is what we got Leslie, we can help you do this, we can help you do this. That was available. So, I look at the trainings on the 2019. These are already trainings that someone has decided we need. We were not involved in the initial what is it we can do for you? You know I'm California, I am northern California. I am still rural. There was a training in Chico - that is a 7-hour drive, one way for most of the tribes that are local to our area. We have 11 tribes on the north coast tribal transportation commission. A 7- hour drive to get to a 3- hour training. When, one of our tribes actually went to the training. There was the instructor. There was other local agencies. They were the only tribe. The instructor said, "I am so happy to see tribes, we haven't had any tribes". We get notices, I know I get notices from the TTAP Center. Previously I got them from our Native American Liaison through Caltrans. More of the local government were going to the trainings.

The tribes were not there because we had not been consulted. We have not been asked, what is it we can provide to you? What do you need? We have been provided a basic cookie cutter this is what we think the tribes need and in order for the tribes to move forward this is what we are going to give to you. How is that a program for us? When someone else has decided, for us? I just find it really sad that we have gone from a place where we could ask for assistance and obtain assistance for a project that was for tribes. Who I call at University of Virginia? Oh, I know you have a 3-step process I can call and leave a message someone will get back to me. It, it doesn't work. Locally we reached out, not me personally, but one of our other member tribes reached out and said, "We have a location for you, we can provide you meeting rooms, we have hotels, we can do all of this." It took a week to even get a response after numerous contacts.

This pilot it's just is really, it's sad. And that's all I have to say.

KIM STUBE (T)

Kim Stube - Cowlitz Tribes. I think for Federal Highways as you are listening to consultation the piece is missing by just having this program a one-stop-shop for all the united states for all tribes. Its implicit, what we had before was that personal connection with individual agencies. We had that relationship with that individual TTAP. With whoever that director was. We could reach out. They would send out requests at the end or beginning of the year. Check off the trainings for the following year. So that personal touch is missing as we are going forward with just this pilot program project. I have to concur with Mary Beth's argument, that we need to suspend it, work out a better format, have them bring back that personal touch back to the tribes one-on-one we had before we lost our TTAP's, our regional TTAP's.

GERRY HOPE (T)

Gerry Hope AK TTWG. Hi. I went through a pretty thoughtful discussion-comment about the training and what TTWG thought. What I got from you is what I sense is more of a defense of the pilot. So, I don't know - you start out saying we're open to comments, it's your time to speak, but I feel like you are putting yourself in position of defending the pilot plan. I think that's kind of strange. So, if you want to take comment, want to hear comment. Please hear comment but please don't position yourself where you are trying to defend something. I really am losing the momentum of why I came here this morning for, Feeling, oh, they are taking comment. This is tribal consultation. But now I'm feeling, I'm losing that loving feeling and thinking now we are in a dialogue where your defending your pilot program. And we're trying to say "hey, listen to us". This is supposed to be consultation, listen to us. Don't predetermine, when you said you were not going to predetermine.

JOHN HEALY (T)

Sorry about that Siri kind of got ahead of me there. John Healy For Belknap. Not to belittle the subject, as I am sure you will hear it many more times in here. The scheduling of the classes. I just happened to put down here. Motor vehicle injury prevention. There is a class in Havre, MT. Who are we going to have sitting in the seats? That's the same exact same dates we are going to be in Billings at our quarterly TTP meeting - where I suggest we have training. But it is just a FYI. Why have training with same names in other towns. So, all the tribes in Montana go to this quarterly meeting in Billings so I be curious to see how many show in Montana. On another note, as the regional person I will be resubmitting a letter that we submitted a couple years ago.

DAVID DELLERA (T)

David Dellera - Dry Creek Rancheria - The question you mention that you determine the location from input gathered. How do you determine the types of courses given? Do you get any input of which courses you offer?

TONY FURST (F)

Tony - I will defer to Victoria for a complete answer. We look at what is offered there in the past over the years and seen where our potential gaps of what has been offered in the past. There are any number of ways we can do that and the feedback I am hearing from all is that we need to engage the tribal community more aggressively to better determine what those needs are for those locations that's message received. And we can build that into the TTAP program going forward.

As a suggestion in those locations, those tribes and locations, ask them. In my personal training when I had to train my staff I look elsewhere. I don't look to TTAP because they are not offering what I need, so I have to look at American Public Works Association for that training so, you know, I would look at these other guys, other programs as they have accreditation and certification for these people. But again, it's not satisfying my tribes needs location or content so I would maybe look at other programs.

MARY BETH FRANK CLARK (T)

Mary Beth again - Nez Perce Tribe - Couple more comments is the pilot project program has just pretty much dissolved and ignored any of the tribes input. And what you've missed, what you are missing from the TTAP pilot, is that connection with the needs. Because even with the dates of the meetings. When that first roll out came out it had a five-day training in Wellpinit. That's a crazy area over there. So that is when I asked Victoria, where are you going to stay at? It was ridiculous. And because you mention you took it from the past trainings that were done by the TTAP. I know that all the past TTAPs would go talk to their tribes, talk about needs, talk about training needs and capture what they could do as a training so the one training the past TTAP had in Wellpinit was something on the road. Chip seal, some type of method and they invited tribes to go there. That's why Spokane tribes is on the map of where training was held. We held it on site. We did it with Dan and Anthony. That's how we are doing things, we were connecting with tribes and providing that needed training to tribes. It's not fair. Were just saying here's a class. It's on June 30th. Tribes go there. That's how it's being done right now. It's not worth it and so that's what I wanted to say.

CONSTANCE THOMPSON (T)

Constance Thompson - Fort Peck Tribes. Transportation Planner. I have another comment listening to other people speaking, one of the things it comes back down to, and I may sound like a broken record, is tribal transportation assistance program. Again, it's a tribal transportation assistance program. And I feel that when you took over the pilot program or when the pilot program started it was all gung ho, we were going to do this, we were going to do that, we're going to serve the needs of the people. What people are you serving? You sure are not serving the tribal transportation program and that is one of the things that really needs to get drilled into somebody's head, somewhere, when they start looking at the new pilot program if they're going to do another TTAP situation. However, please take into consideration who you're servicing, educating and assisting tribal people and that is the main point. We fight every year for money. We work together with other tribes to get money for the tribal transportation program and I feel this TTAP funding has been a total waste of money. And if that is the case, it's just a black eye on the federal government against the tribes. Thank you.

VICTOR HAWLEY (T)

In regards, to the... Victor Hawley, Administrator, Yerington Paiute tribe. In regard to emergency response, I know that tribal transportation programs can kick in to play a huge role in responding to natural disasters and we have had several disasters over the past 4 years where we had to utilize the transportation program for responding. And so when I think you talk about your local planning some of your strategic planning, it's very important to include those sections of highway, 4470. But anyway, it was like $14.3 M dollars for damage. But how our transportation played a role I think is going to be a key component in developing or improving the communication, the planning, just the process. We see a lot of we do serve tribal members, tribal people, we work with other departments, programs and tribal leaders do advocate on behalf of agencies for funding for our needs that we do have locally. So I think a lot of components come in to play when you, when we have interaction in communication, with agencies and if you are to include how your transportation can be beneficial to not just tribal members but for disaster recovery and response.

RICHARD PALMER (T)

Richard Palmer. I guess what I am asking is that when a tribe can look at other resources and use other resources. Using them in a better way than the resources were supposed to be going to the TTAP program. I think if we were to ask for a grade of the performances and ask for a performance value base on cost and all these things. I think that the majority of people who respond, would respond in a way that the tribal program, let us have the money that you are spending on the program and let us spend it on other resources. You can go to the internet and find all kinds of resources. You know the state internet, they have all kind of resources. That to me is a better resource search and that's a better response get from the training I need. You know you talk about innovation. I don't get any innovation from the TTAP. I'm looking at properties, I'm looking at asphalt, or looking at all these kind of things. And then, they offer things like seat belt safety or child safety. That is not, sure that is part of the program, but that doesn't reach out, that doesn't help me in say looking at issues or how to best use asphalt. They help me the type of asphalt on the market or a concrete item or what's on the market. Those are the type of things I have to look for that are not being given. So, when I go to the state research and I look at them I can up on that server. I can go to AGC, I can go to other resources. I can come up with an answer right away. Where I go to the Centers and I don't get the answers. But what I get is seatbelt safety. I think if we were to grade the source right now. I think Victoria's grade would be this program is not working. The old program where it was one-to-one worked a lot better. I'm not saying we should go back to that center, but I think we reconsider what we're looking at. Maybe they had a better grade than what we're giving right now. Thank you.

DAVID DELLERA (T)

David Dellera. I just want to applaud what he just said and reiterate that me and my staff we look elsewhere for training. So, what I would suggest or something is that just go to tribes and say what type of training do you need? That's never been done for our tribe. I know, I'm sure there is a lot of good TTAP training but specific to, I mean there is great environmental permitting that's perfect, the California subject and all other states. But I have go to Caltrans to get that training. So, I guess to reiterate that suggestion ask what the tribes need.

TONY FURST (F)

Tony Furst - Any other comments, concerns, observations, feedback?

LESLIE SANDERS (T)

Once again, my name is Leslie Sanders Transportation Director for the Trinidad Rancheria. I appreciate this consultation and I can only hope that you share that you are appreciating our concerns and you are listening to us. And I hope that you are really listening because I have been to numerous other meetings, TTPCC meeting meetings, meetings throughout where these same concerns and questions have been repeated time and time again. And so, I am just really hoping that maybe this time you are not only listening but there will actually be, where our concerns are not only heard but are acted upon. Because listening and hearing are two different things. So, I hope there is further communication, further consultation with the tribes in developing whatever comes next for the TTAP program.

TONY FURST (F)

Tony Furst. Again, handwritten comments can be sent and all of you that have indicated sending comment. All this was recorded and transcripts will be made available. We have some time if anybody else has comments, concerns, observations that they want to share with us now?

MARY BETH FRANK CLARK (T)

Mary Beth - Nez Perce Tribe - Mine's more of a question. What is your timeline or rollout on going forward after consultations and looking at all the data that is being said here? What is your timeframe?

TONY FURST (F)

Tony Furst - We don't have a timeframe yet. We are to get feedback from tribes from the four consultations and meetings and think through where we want to go and what the next steps are. Again, like I said at the beginning, we have a blank sheet of paper, we have not made any determinations whatsoever on any path or what course TTAP will take going forward. We need to get this input and then sit down and think about how we are going to proceed. So, there is no timeline. The contract does end December 2019 and we are going to have to think what you suggested earlier - suspending the contract, we can think about extending it while we think through what the next steps are. There are any number of options on how we could proceed.

We have not set a path on any of them.

UNKNOWN SPEAKER (T)

Unknown Speaker. I have a question - because it is a Tribal Technical Assistance Program, if you suspended it? If the program was suspended or halted or whatever word you wanted to use. I don't see how beneficial that would be especially because it's a technical assistance for the tribes. If you suspend it or even if you halt it, what impact is that going to have on the tribes themselves? Because like a tribal liaison or department, if there are question or issues you have within your department with, in regard to, the program then it becomes problematic.

TONY FURST (F)

Tony - It all part of the equation on how we get there next. When the contracts ended the last time before the new pilot was up and running, Federal Highway stepped in and provided technical assistance in the interim between January through middle of march. So, we do need to think through how assistance gets covered to tribes in whatever capacity as we move forward.

RACHELLE BRADLEY (T)

Rachelle Bradley, Spokane Tribe. I actually have a question for comments made on one of the slides. So, if you could go back.

TONY FURST (F)

Tony Furst - which one?

RACHELLE BRADLEY (T)

Umm, back, again, so this one here. I notice that the program topics you have delivered a huge chunk was non - highway topics when regional TTAPs existed but since the national one took over, I know these are just 2 examples, there is nothing for non-highway topics and I was just wondering what the justification for that is? Because highways are only a small chunk of what represents tribal transportation needs. I know the Spokane tribe has a lot of other needs so I feel like you took away 33% almost of that training topic, in this example, so could you speak a little to that?

TONY FURST (F)

Tony - The program focused on the core elements that we talked about earlier safety, planning, etc... it is a transportation and technical assistance program. We were focusing on the core skill sets to enable the tribe or any other entity to manage their transportation system. Effective transportation system. Data and asset management, planning, safety, maintenance and operation, project delivery. Those core transportation functions are what we were focusing on.

RACHELLE BRADLEY (T)

Rachelle Bradley. Ok then just one other comment - Personally I think it is a little ridiculous that all the Northwest tribes had to come all the way to Reno. There are 29 federally recognized tribes in Washington State and there are currently only three tribes here right now from Washington state. That is not enough consultation for the amount of tribes that are there in Washington and I know a lot of them won't be going to Alaska because Alaska is very far away and expensive to fly to, and so I want to say that although this is a great consultation meeting it is not sufficient enough. I mean 3 out of 29 tribes in Washington state alone is not enough and so that is just a comment I want to make. Again, I find it a little bit ridiculous that all those tribes in Montana, northern California and Washington have to come all the way to Reno to have this meeting. Thank you

RICHARD PALMER (T)

Richard Palmer. I would just like to clarify one thing. I am not against child safety, seatbelts or any of that stuff. I just wanted to make a point that a lot of the stuff they are advertising are not what are needs are. I'm not against child safety or seatbelts. They are needed - yes. Thank you

TONY FURST (F)

Tony Furst - Other comments, concerns, observations?

MARK MITCHELL (T)

Good Morning my name is Mark Mitchell, I am the former governor for the Pueblo Tesuque in New Mexico. For all the statements that have been said we support those statements. And for the record, pueblos we don't consider this a consultation because if you are the decision maker then you should be meeting with leadership. Not in a situation like this. Therefore, a consultation should be this type of meeting. I also agree with the statement of having a tribal liaison in this position and it should be a tribal member. Someone that knows native people. A lot of outreach should be happening year around and the last thing I want to say is that I hope that this information gets done and that the information you are requesting doesn't fall on deaf ears and gets expedited by the way so the tribes are satisfied with this type of meeting. I don't know if you all have regions in your program, but yesterday over at the NCAI meeting, during lunch, the National Park Service got hammered by tribal leaders for basically the same thing. We told them it was not consultation because you are not at tribal level. You are not meeting with the tribal leaders. The leader of this country is not sitting there. So, referencing how things are going to unfold for this entire program. So, with that I just suggest that with whatever information that you've received or gotten, act on it, and get back to the tribe so that they understand and they are satisfied with what's going on in their program. Thank you.

KIM STUBE (T)

Kim Stube - Cowlitz Tribe. As you are going forward trying to make your decisions, I am going to recommend that you use the TTPCC to help with that recommendation. They have representatives from each region in the United States. They're there on behalf of the tribes in this region. To work for us and I think they would have a lot of good input.

TONY FURST (F)

Tony Furst. Anymore comments? Concerns? Again, written comments are available until July 19. You can always reach the Center for Local Aid Support, Victoria's team, through the website email address at CLAS@dot.gov. Anybody have any more comments? Otherwise Victoria and I thank you for all of your input and comments. We appreciate it.

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