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TITLE 43TRANSPORTATION
PART 1TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
CHAPTER 16PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT OF TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS
SUBCHAPTER BTRANSPORTATION PLANNING
RULE §16.51Responsibilities of Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPO)

(a) General. Pursuant to 23 U.S.C. §134 and 49 U.S.C. §5303, as implemented by 23 C.F.R. Part 450, the metropolitan planning organization (MPO), in cooperation with the department and with public transportation operators as defined by 23 C.F.R. Part 450, shall be responsible for carrying out the metropolitan transportation planning process. The MPO, department, and public transportation operators shall cooperatively determine their mutual responsibilities in the conduct of the planning process, including corridor refinement (e.g., feasibility and major investment) studies. They shall cooperatively develop the unified planning work program (UPWP), metropolitan transportation plan (MTP) containing a long-range forecast of proposed projects and transportation improvement program (TIP) containing a list of projects that have been approved for development in the near-term. The MPO, department, and public transportation operators shall coordinate the development of the MTP and TIP with other providers of transportation, such as 14 C.F.R. Part 139 airport sponsors, maritime port operators, and rail operators. All transportation plans and programs developed by the MPO as part of the planning process must comply with federal requirements and provide for public involvement.

(b) Membership of MPOs. According to 23 C.F.R. Part 450, each MPO that serves a transportation management area shall consist of local elected officials, officials of public agencies that administer or operate major modes of transportation in the metropolitan planning area, and appropriate state transportation officials.

(c) Approval of boundaries. The governor or the commission, if the approval authority has been delegated to the commission, must approve the boundaries of a designated metropolitan planning area and any revision of those boundaries. Approval of the boundaries of a designated metropolitan planning area by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) or the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) is not required. The MPO must provide the governor and the department with appropriate documentation and the rationale supporting any recommended boundary change. The MPO must provide its approved metropolitan planning area boundary maps to the department for submission to the FHWA, FTA, and other applicable federal agencies.

(d) Metropolitan planning area agreements.

  (1) Planning agreement. The responsibilities for cooperatively carrying out transportation planning (including corridor and subarea studies) and programming shall be clearly identified in a planning agreement between the department and the MPO.

  (2) MPO-public transportation operator planning agreement. There shall be a written agreement between the MPO, the department, and public transportation operators as defined by 23 C.F.R. Part 450 that specifies cooperative procedures for carrying out transportation planning (including corridor and subarea studies) and programming as required by this subchapter.

  (3) Agreements in nonattainment MPOs. If the metropolitan planning area includes part but not all of a nonattainment or maintenance area, as defined by the federal Clean Air Act (CAA), there shall be a written agreement among the department, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ), affected local agencies, and the MPO describing the process for cooperative planning and analysis of all projects outside the metropolitan planning area, but within the nonattainment or maintenance area. The agreement shall be in accordance with federal requirements.

  (4) Coordination of planning processes. If more than one MPO has authority within an urbanized area or a nonattainment or maintenance area, there shall be a written agreement between the department and the MPOs describing how the processes will be coordinated to assure the development of an overall transportation plan for that area. The TCEQ and any local air quality agencies must also be parties to an agreement that relates to a nonattainment or maintenance area.

(e) Coordination with state implementation plan (SIP) development. In nonattainment or maintenance areas, the MPO shall coordinate the development of the transportation plan with the state implementation plan (SIP) development process, including the development of any transportation control measures (TCMs). The MPO shall develop or assist in developing the TCMs, which may include any measure used for the purpose of reducing emissions or concentrations of air pollutants from transportation sources by reducing vehicle use or changing traffic flow or congestion conditions. The MPO shall not approve any metropolitan transportation plan or transportation improvement program which does not conform with the SIP, as determined in accordance with Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) conformity regulations.

(f) Metropolitan planning in areas with multiple MPOs. If more than one MPO has authority in a metropolitan planning area (including multistate metropolitan planning areas) or in an area which is designated as nonattainment or maintenance for transportation related pollutants, the MPOs, the governor, and the governor's counterpart in any other involved state shall cooperatively establish the boundaries of the metropolitan planning area (including the 20-year planning horizon and relationship to the nonattainment or maintenance areas) and the respective jurisdictional responsibilities of each MPO. The MPOs shall consult with each other and the states to assure the preparation of integrated plans and transportation improvement programs for the entire metropolitan planning area. While an individual MPO's metropolitan transportation plan and transportation improvement program may be developed separately, each plan and transportation improvement program must be consistent with the plans and transportation improvement programs of other MPOs in the metropolitan planning area. For the overall metropolitan planning area, the individual MPO planning process shall reflect coordinated data collection, analysis, and development. In those areas where this provision is applicable, coordination efforts shall be initiated and the process and outcomes documented in subsequent transmittals of the unified planning work program and various planning products (e.g., the metropolitan transportation plan and transportation improvement program) to the department for further transmittal to the FHWA, FTA, and other applicable federal agencies.


Source Note: The provisions of this §16.51 adopted to be effective January 1, 2011, 35 TexReg 8388; amended to be effective November 15, 2012, 37 TexReg 8981

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