In this issue:
The Federal Highway Administration's (FHWA) leadership team is in place. See Biographies of Key Officials.
FHWA issued Notice N 4510.711, Rescission of Unobligated Balances of Contract Authority on September 30, 2009, on August 31, 2009, to notify the States that $8,708,000,000 of unobligated Federal-aid highway funds apportioned to States will be rescinded on September 30, 2009, as required by Section 10212 of the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU), Public Law (Pub. L.) 109-59, as amended by Section 1302(b) of the Pension Protection Act of 2006, Pub. L. 109-280 and Section 112 of the SAFETEA-LU Technical Corrections Act of 2008, Pub. L. 110-244, as affected by Title XI, Subtitle D, Section 1132(a) of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, Pub. L. 110-140. FHWA has no discretion in the application of the $8,708,000,000 rescission. The Notice should answer most of your questions.
Previously, FHWA issued Notice N 4510.707 on April 13, 2009, to notify the States that $3.150 billion of unobligated Federal-aid highway funds apportioned to States were rescinded as required by Division I, Title I of the Omnibus Appropriations Act, 2009, Public Law (Pub. L. No.) 111-8. FHWA posted the responses to these rescissions through a link from the Notice (scroll to the bottom of the Rescission Notice webpage). NOTE: Specific rescissions by subprogram and fiscal year are posted at www.fhwa.dot.gov/rescissions/pl111_8/index.htm.
Surface Transportation Authorization discussions are continuing. SAFETEA-LU expires on September 30, 2009, but some kind of extension is expected.
The US Department of Transportation proposed to extend the current authorization by 18 months. The U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW) approved an 18-Month extension on July 15, 2009. This is a clean extension, with no policy changes.
The House of Representatives Transportation and Infrastructure Committee released the Surface Transportation Authorization Act of 2009: A Blueprint for Investment and Reform. NOTE: This website changes often: Transportation Authorization is on the main page as of September 1, 2009.
Several organizations have thoughts about surface transportation authorization considerations. Disclaimer: The links below reflect the views of these organizations. Providing links to these websites does not represent endorsement by the U.S. Department of Transportation.
The State Trail Administrators Meeting (STAM 2009) took place in Gainesville FL on July 7-9, 2009; see www.fhwa.dot.gov/environment/recreational_trails/events/stam_2009/index.htm, including the meeting notes. STAM 2009 took place prior to the Southeastern Equestrian Trails Conference (SETC). SETC has many presentations at www.southeasternequestriantrails.com/ (which will eventually be archived under SETC 2009 - Florida).
The Transportation Enhancement (TE) Professionals Seminar took place in Washington DC on August 13-14, 2009. Information will be posted on the National Transportation Enhancements Clearinghouse (NTEC) website at www.enhancements.org/seminar/seminarfy09.asp.
The FHWA announced the recipients of the 2009 Exemplary Human Environment Initiatives (EHEI) and Exemplary Ecosystem Initiatives (EEI) on August 2, 2009. This year FHWA recognized projects in Arkansas, California, Delaware, Idaho, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, Nevada, Oregon, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, and Utah. The Memorandum briefly describes each of the noteworthy projects receiving recognition this year. Congratulations to all of the EHEI and EEI designees, and thank you to everyone who submitted an application. We know that there are many more great examples of environmental stewardship-both human and ecosystem-that our divisions are working on with their State partners. We encourage you to make note of them and submit them as EHEI/EEI applications next year.
Surface Transportation and Environment Cooperative Research Program
The Surface Transportation and Environment Cooperative Research Program (STEP) FY 2008 Accomplishment Fact Sheet on the STEP web site at www.fhwa.dot.gov/hep/step/resources/archives/factsheet.cfm. Topics include air quality, ecosystems, historic preservation, bicycle and pedestrian, noise, outdoor advertising, transportation planning, travel modeling, etc.
Outdoor Resources Review Group, Great Outdoors America Report
The Outdoor Resources Review Group is a private, bipartisan group undertaking a review of land conservation, outdoor recreation, and related issues to assess the needs and preferences of the American public and the resources available to meet those needs. It issued its Great Outdoors America Report in July 2009. It provides a background of the status of outdoor recreation in America, and provides several recommendations regarding the Land and Water Conservation Fund, youth participation in the outdoors, promoting public-private partnerships, supporting trails, and adapting resources to the ecological impacts.
National Association of Recreation Resource Planners: Best Practices in Recreation Resources Planning
The National Association of Recreation Resource Planners (NARRP) released Best Practices in Recreation Resources Planning on July 17, 2009. NARRP will continue to complete additional chapters and post them to the NARRP website.
FHWA Manual Outlines Best Practices, Tools To Reduce Wildlife-Vehicle Collisions
FHWA published Best Practices Manual: Wildlife Vehicle Collision Reduction Study. This is a follow-up to a study and report on wildlife-vehicle collisions submitted to Congress in November 2007. The study and the report to Congress and best practices manual were mandated in 2005 under the Safe, Accountable, Equitable, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU). Congress directed the Department of Transportation to conduct a study to identify the causes and impacts of wildlife-vehicle collisions as well as solutions to help prevent such collisions. The study was to be followed by development of a best practices manual "to support State efforts to reduce wildlife vehicle collisions." The Best Practices Manual is at http://environment.fhwa.dot.gov/ecosystems/wvc/index.asp.
Forest Service Trail-Related Publications
The Federal Highway Administration's Recreational Trails Program works with the USDA Forest Service Technology and Development Program to develop trail-related technology and to provide publications to the public, available at www.fhwa.dot.gov/environment/recreational_trails/publications/fs_publications/. There are also publications that may not necessarily be directly trail-related, may be helpful for trail users.
International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association: Safe Riders! Information
The snowmobile manufacturers, in cooperation with the snowmobile community, support the Safe Riders! You make snowmobiling safe safety campaign. Snowmobile safety information is available at www.snowmobile.org.
FHWA's quarterly Pedestrian Forum newsletter has articles to promote pedestrian safety. The Pedestrian Forum-Summer 2009 newsletter has information on:
FHWA's Public Roads is the bimonthly magazine of the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). Reading Public Roads is the easiest way to keep up-to-date on developments in Federal highway policies, programs, and research and technology. The July/August 2009 issue has article on Safe Routes to School, pedestrian safety, highway projects, training, and more. Of course, the Safe Routes to School article begins, "Ever hear someone say, "In my day, I walked to school 5 miles, barefoot, uphill both ways, in the snow . . ."?"
The FHWA Office of Real Estate Services Newsletter for July 2009 has articles on FHWA's Project Development Guide, Ecological Workshop, junkyards, realty-related information systems, and more.
The FHWA Resource Center's quarterly Centered on Service newsletter has a wide variety of useful articles about the FHWA Resource Center's activities. The July 2009 issue has articles on pedestrian safety, pavement testing, roadside safety audits, training opportunities (ranging from concrete pavement and bridgework safety to accessible pedestrian design), and partnerships.
America's Byways Bulletin, www.bywaysonline.org/program/bulletin/, has information related to the National Scenic Byways Program, including conferences and training resources. The August edition has articles for grant applicants, sustaining byways, and international travelers.
Disclaimer: The links below reflect the views of these organizations. Providing links to these publications does not represent endorsement by the U.S. Department of Transportation.
National Park Service Conservation and Recreation Newsletter The National Park Service has a monthly Conservation and Recreation Newsletter.
American Trails publishes the American Trails Magazine and the Trail Tracks newsletter. American Trails Magazine covers trail-related news, legislation, action items, trainings, success stories, events, people making a difference, creative funding ideas, resources, and information on products and services. It even has pages to turn! Trail Tracks is a more typical newsletter with current trail information and "Action Alerts". The Magazine and Trail Tracks archives share the same webpage: www.americantrails.org/trailtracks/.
Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals has an e-newsletter available to members. It provides information on professional development webinars, transportation policy, conferences, member collaboration groups, and more. See www.apbp.org. The August 2009 edition has articles about Safe Routes to School planning and programs, and links to the National Bicycle and Pedestrian Documentation Project.
League of American Bicyclists: American Bicyclist Update
See www.bikeleague.org/members/e-newsletter_archive.php. The recent newsletters have several articles of interest to TE managers and trail interests. The July 20 edition has articles on transportation authorization, bicycle commuting, distracted driving, and trails. The August 3 edition has articles on transportation authorization, complete streets, and criticism of funding for bicycle and pedestrian facilities and trails (with a link to the League's Trash Talk webpage). The August 17 edition has a lot of local interest articles. The August 31 edition points out that USDOT Secretary LaHood wants to reduce distracted driving.
National Center for Bicycling and Walking: Centerlines
See www.bikewalk.org/newsletter.php. The recent newsletters have several articles of interest to TE managers and trail interests, especially on planning and policy issues.
The Rails-to-Trails Conservancy's monthly e-newsletter is at http://support.railstotrails.org/site/PageServer?pagename=rtn_registration; for general news see www.railstotrails.org/news/index.html. The July 2009 edition had an article on a Surface Transportation Board (STB) hearing on railbanking.
Transportation Research Board: TR News
The Transportation Research Board (TRB) produces TR News, which features articles on innovative and state-of-the-art research and practice in all modes of transportation. It also includes brief news items of interest to the transportation community, "research pays off" articles, profiles of transportation professionals, workshop and conference announcements, new book notices, and news of TRB activities. The TR News: May-June 2009 Transportation and the Environment: Mutual Enhancements has several articles of interest to trail and TE interests, including:
Public Lands Advocacy
The National Off Highway Vehicle Conservation Council has Public Lands Advocacy Training available: See www.nohvcc.org.
Trail Management: Plans, Projects, and People
October 5-9, 2009, National Conservation Training Center, Shepherdstown, WV
About the course: Public agency trail staff, contractors, and volunteers will learn to achieve sustainable and accessible trails of all kinds, using the best practices of the Trail Management Process. This collaborative process includes planning, design layout, construction, maintenance, monitoring, crew leadership, interpretation, operations, and safety. Field exercises include trail layout, construction and maintenance techniques. Register on-line at http://www.doi.gov/doilearn/ or Matt Gay, 304-876-7654; Matt_Gay@fws.gov; or Juanita Gustines, 304-876-7956; Juanita_Gustines@fws.gov.
Wyoming's Helmet Safety Campaign Videos
The Wyoming State Trails Program developed Helmet Safety Campaign Videos. See http://wyotrails.state.wy.us/. These are useful for on-road motorcycling, off-highway vehicle riding, and mountain bike riding.
Walk21, the international walking conference, October 7-9, New York NY. www.walk21.com/newyork/newyork.html
Southeastern Water Trails Forum, October 29-30, 2009, Chattanooga TN. www.southeastwaterforum.org/roundtables/default.asp
2010 IMBA World Summit, May 5-8, 2010, Augusta GA. http://imba.com/summit/2010_World_Summit.html
Bridging Conservation and Recreation: 2010 River Management Society (RMS) and National Association of Recreation Resource Planners (NARRP) Symposium, May 18-20, 2010, Portland OR. See the Symposium Overview and Call for Papers at www.narrp.org/clubportal/ClubStatic.cfm?clubID=1431&pubmenuoptID=28658.
See more events at: