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The National Academies

NCHRP 08-36/Task 16 [Completed]

Assessment of Proposed Planning and National Environmental Policy Act Regulations
[ NCHRP 08-36 (Research for the AASHTO Standing Committee on Planning) ]

  Project Data
Funds: 80000
Research Agency: Cambridge Systematics
Principal Investigator: Steven M. Pickrell
Effective Date: 5/16/2000
Completion Date: 11/16/2000
Comments: Completed---Final report sent to AASHTO

The U.S. Department of Transportation (U.S.DOT) had submitted to the Office of Management and Budget a proposed federal regulation implementing TEA 21's revised planning and environment provisions and updating the transportation-related environmental procedures required by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and by other federal environmental laws. The proposed rule was expected to be released in early March of this year. On the basis of an earlier FHWA options paper, it was believed the scope of the proposed regulations would be wide-ranging, covering many new or significantly modified aspects of the planning and environment process. The resulting impact on statewide planning, programming, and project development practices and procedures was potentially far-reaching.

Despite the complexity and breadth of the proposed rule, it was likely that AASHTO and its member departments had only a few months to fully analyze the proposal, develop a consensus on policy and procedural issues, and submit comments to U.S. DOT. Given the short time frame, AASHTO sought consultant assistance in preparing a comprehensive technical analysis of the proposed rule, including a detailed assessment of all proposed additions, deletions, or modifications to existing regulations and the implications for current planning programs and practices. Under this effort, technical assistance would not include advocacy-related activities.

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