Draft Memorandum for the Record
Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization Unified Planning Work Program Committee Meeting Summary
July 15, 2021, Meeting
9:00 AM–9:30 AM, Zoom Video Conferencing Platform. Recording: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nlZk3DQ7wpg&t=1s
Benjamin Muller, Chair, representing Jamey Tesler, Acting Secretary of Transportation and Chief Executive Officer of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT)
The Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization’s (MPO) Unified Planning Work Program (UPWP) Committee agreed to the following:
Materials for this meeting included the following:
1. Draft FFY 2022 UPWP
B. Muller read the guidelines and accessibility statement and welcomed committee members and guests.
There were none.
S. Johnston introduced the FFY 2022 UPWP, recapped the content and the process of developing the document, and stated the goal of gaining the committee’s recommendation that the MPO release the draft document for a 30-day public comment period.
For this year, the UPWP programs about $5.5 million in federal funding—around $4.6 million for the Central Transportation Planning Staff (CTPS) and another million for the Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC). In addition, the UPWP includes work that CTPS executes on contract to other state agencies and other entities, a total of about $1.6 million. The headline number is around $7.3 million.
Overall, this year’s UPWP follows the same organizational pattern as last year. S. Johnston highlighted a couple of items that are different and new.
There is a new task in the Certification Requirements section, called “MPO Resiliency Program.” This limited initial budget is intended to become a permanent program, allowing MPO staff to coordinate with partner agencies on resiliency topics, do some research, and eventually build an MPO resiliency practice should the MPO choose that as a priority. There is a text description of this program on page 3-50 of the draft document or page 104 of the PDF.
Appendix A looks a little different this year as well. This appendix documents transportation-related studies that are going on around the Boston region in FFY 2022, but not funded by the MPO. This year’s version of the appendix, as discussed previously with the UPWP Committee, covers only the essential elements required in this appendix by our federal partners: federally funded studies and those of “regional significance.” Time, resources, and submissions from our municipal partners allowing, staff hopes to at some point build an interactive online interface that will document all transportation-related studies in the Boston Region MPO area.
Having recapped the important elements of the FFY 2022 UPWP, S. Johnston requested the committee’s recommendation to the MPO to release the document for public comment. Eric Bourassa (MAPC) made a motion to recommend that the MPO release the document, and Tom O’Rourke (Three Rivers Interlocal Council [TRIC]/Neponset River Regional Chamber) seconded it. Steve Olanoff (Town of Westwood/TRIC alternate) expressed his disappointment that the committee was voting to proceed with the document, despite extensive conversation at the previous meeting, and the elimination of some items from the draft document. He said that he thought committee members should take action, and instead there is no further discussion. Lenard Diggins (Regional Transportation Advisory Council [Advisory Council]) said that staff had made serious commitments to further work, reporting, and discussion, including presenting to the Advisory Council, and that he was satisfied. E. Bourassa asked S. Olanoff if he was particularly objecting to the deletion of the congestion pricing study from the UPWP; S. Olanoff responded that he was concerned about that, but also that an organization like the MPO should have real conversations instead of rubber-stamping everything.
B. Muller asked questions about when further minor modifications to the document would be made, and S. Johnston responded that further modifications will be added to the final draft for MPO endorsement on August 19. S. Johnston further affirmed that staff would bring back information on scoping and outcomes of work around congestion pricing to the committee, so that the committee could offer feedback and input. L. Diggins and B. Muller discussed the importance of making final adjustments to the UPWP based on feedback received during the public comment period. Brad Rawson (City of Somerville/Inner Core Committee) asked whether the deletion of the congestion pricing study had been a question of policy or resource allocation. B. Muller responded that it was a little bit of each. David Koses (City of Newton/At-Large City) said that he thought doing the congestion pricing study in FFY 2023 could work well.
B. Muller called a vote and the motion to recommend that the MPO release the UPWP for public comment passed unanimously.
MAPC receives about 20 percent of UPWP funds. E. Bourassa briefly recapped how MAPC uses those funds, as documented in Chapter 7 of the UPWP document. MAPC uses the funds in the following areas, among others:
B. Muller recommended that committee members read Chapter 7 of the UPWP to learn more about MAPC’s use of the funds.
There were none.
The next meeting would be August 5, 2021. At that meeting, the committee would be asked to advance an amendment to the FFY 2021 UPWP. S. Johnston also asked anyone who has comments on the FFY 2022 document to get them in by that meeting, if possible.
A motion to adjourn was made by L. Diggins and seconded by E. Bourassa. Without objection, the meeting adjourned.
Massachusetts Department of Transportation (Office of Transportation
Metropolitan Area Planning Council
Regional Transportation Advisory Council
At-Large City (City of Newton)
City of Boston (Boston Transportation
Inner Core Committee (City of Somerville)
Three Rivers Interlocal Council (Town of
Norwood/Neponset Valley Chamber of Commerce)
Three Rivers Interlocal Council Alternate
(Town of Westwood)
City of Framingham (MetroWest Regional Collaborative)
Erika Oliver Jerram
Staff/Central Transportation Planning Staff
Tegin Teich, Executive Director
Gina Perille, Deputy Executive Director
Annette Demchur, Director of Policy and Planning
Hiral Gandhi, Director of Operations and Finance
Rebecca Morgan, Director of Projects and Partnerships
Marty Milkovits, Director of Modeling and Analytics
Mark Abbott, Traffic Analysis and Design Group Manager
Kathy Jacob, Principal Planner
Anne McGahan, Chief Planner
Betsy Harvey, Transportation Equity Program Manager
Sandy Johnston, UPWP Manager
Kate White, Public Outreach Coordinator
Matt Archer, Transportation Planner
The Boston Region Metropolitan Planning
Organization (MPO) operates its programs, services, and activities in
compliance with federal nondiscrimination laws including Title VI of the
Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VI), the Civil Rights Restoration Act of
1987, and related statutes and regulations. Title VI prohibits discrimination
in federally assisted programs and requires that no person in the United
States of America shall, on the grounds of race, color, or national origin
(including limited English proficiency), be excluded from participation in,
denied the benefits of, or be otherwise subjected to discrimination under any
program or activity that receives federal assistance. Related federal
nondiscrimination laws administered by the Federal Highway Administration,
Federal Transit Administration, or both, prohibit discrimination on the basis
of age, sex, and disability. The Boston Region MPO considers these protected
populations in its Title VI Programs, consistent with federal interpretation
and administration. In addition, the Boston Region MPO provides meaningful
access to its programs, services, and activities to individuals with limited
English proficiency, in compliance with U.S. Department of Transportation
policy and guidance on federal Executive Order 13166.
The Boston Region MPO also complies with the
Massachusetts Public Accommodation Law, M.G.L. c 272 sections 92a, 98, 98a,
which prohibits making any distinction, discrimination, or restriction in
admission to, or treatment in a place of public accommodation based on race,
color, religious creed, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, disability,
or ancestry. Likewise, the Boston Region MPO complies with the Governor's
Executive Order 526, section 4, which requires that all programs, activities,
and services provided, performed, licensed, chartered, funded, regulated, or
contracted for by the state shall be conducted without unlawful
discrimination based on race, color, age, gender, ethnicity, sexual
orientation, gender identity or expression, religion, creed, ancestry,
national origin, disability, veteran's status (including Vietnam-era veterans),
A complaint form and additional information
can be obtained by contacting the MPO or at http://www.bostonmpo.org/mpo_non_discrimination. To request this
information in a different language or in an accessible format, please
Title VI Specialist
For people with hearing or speaking difficulties,
connect through the state MassRelay service:
TTY or Hearing Carry-over: 800.439.2370
Voice Carry-over: 866.887.6619
Text to Speech: 866.645.9870
For more information, including numbers for Spanish
speakers, visit https://www.mass.gov/massrelay