- Briefing Room
U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
Washington, DC 20590
Q. Can States and Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) hold virtual public hearings where the applicable public participation plan provides for “in person” participation?
A. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and Federal Transit Administration (FTA) are aware that some States and MPOs are looking to utilize virtual public involvement technologies and techniques for public participation activities related to metropolitan and statewide transportation planning under the applicable statutes, 23 U.S.C. 134-135, as a way to satisfy the public meetings provisions. The agencies are currently evaluating the impacts of utilizing virtual public involvement in place of in-person participation where it is required under the public participation plan. As FHWA and FTA undertake the evaluation, States and MPOs may revise their public involvement plans to employ virtual public involvement techniques. In the meantime, both FHWA and FTA staff are available to answer any questions you may have.
This FAQ does not have the force and effect of law and is not meant to bind the public in any way. It is intended only to provide clarity to the public regarding existing requirements under the law or agency regulations. This FAQ will remain in effect while the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) determination that a public health emergency related to COVID-191 is in effect, unless sooner updated by the Federal Highway Administration and Federal Transit Administration prior to the end of the HHS determination.