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FHWA/FTA Questions and Answers on Public Involvement in Transportation Decisionmaking

[7] How do FHWA and FTA define the "public"?

The ISTEA specifically identifies various segments of the public and the transportation industry that must be given the opportunity to participate, including "citizens, affected public agencies, representatives of transportation agency employees, other affected employee representatives, private providers of transportation and other interested parties" (e.g., 23U.S.C. 134(h). The FHWA and FTA define the public broadly as including all individuals or groups who are potentially affected by transportation decisions. This includes anyone who resides in, has interest in, or does business in a given area which may be affected by transportation decisions. The public includes both individuals and organized groups. In addition, it is important to provide similar opportunities for the participation of all private and public providers of transportation services, including, but not limited to, the trucking and rail freight industries, rail passenger industry, taxi cab operators, and all conventional and unconventional transit service operators. Finally, those persons traditionally underserved by existing transportation systems such as low income or minority households and the elderly should be explicitly encouraged to participate in the public involvement process.

Updated: 5/16/2013
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