[Federal Register Volume 72, Number 130 (Monday, July 9, 2007)]
[Notices]
[Pages 37305-37306]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E7-13149]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Highway Administration


Announcement of Solicitation and Application Procedure for State 
Participation in the Surface Transportation Project Delivery Pilot 
Program

AGENCY: Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice; solicitation of applications.

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SUMMARY: Section 6005 of the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient 
Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU) provided 
FHWA the authority to allow up to five States to assume the Secretary's 
responsibilities for the environmental review, consultation, and other 
actions pertaining to the review or approval of highway projects. In 
selecting States for the five available slots in the pilot program, 
Congress gave priority to the selection of the States of Alaska, 
California, Ohio, Oklahoma, and Texas. However, at this time, two 
States, Ohio and Texas, have declined to participate in the pilot 
program. Accordingly, this notice solicits applications from all other 
States for participation in this pilot program.

DATES: Letters that indicate interest by the State to be considered for 
participation in the pilot program should be sent to the FHWA Division 
Office no later than September 7, 2007.

ADDRESSES: The FHWA Division Office locations can be found at the 
following URL: http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/field.html#fieldsites.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Ruth Rentch, Office of Project 
Delivery and Environmental Review, (202)-366-2034, Ruth.Rentch@dot.gov, 
or Mr. Michael Harkins, Office of the Chief Counsel, (202) 366-4928, 
Michael.Harkins@dot.gov, Federal Highway Administration, Department of 
Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 20590. 
Office hours are from 7:45 a.m. to 4:15 p.m., e.t., Monday through 
Friday, except Federal holidays.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Electronic Access

    An electronic copy of this notice may be downloaded from the Office 
of the Federal Register's home page at http://www.archives.gov and the 
Government Printing Office's Web site at http://www.access.gpo.gov.

[[Page 37306]]

Background

    Section 6005 of the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient 
Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU) (codified at 
23 U.S.C. 327) established a pilot program to allow up to five States 
to assume the Secretary of Transportation's responsibilities for 
environmental review, consultation, or other actions under any Federal 
environmental law pertaining to the review or approval of highway 
projects. In order to be selected for the pilot program, a State must 
submit an application to the Secretary. In selecting States for the 
five available slots in the pilot program, Congress gave priority to 
the selection of the States of Alaska, California, Ohio, Oklahoma, and 
Texas.
    On February 12, 2007, the FHWA published a final rule at 72 FR 6464 
establishing requirements concerning the information required to be 
contained in an application by the State for the pilot program. These 
regulations, contained in 23 CFR Part 773, required the States of 
Alaska, California, Ohio, Oklahoma, and Texas to submit a statement of 
interest to the FHWA by May 14, 2007, in order to retain their priority 
status. If any of these States failed to submit a statement of interest 
to the FHWA by May 14, or decline to participate, another State may be 
selected. In response to this requirement, the FHWA has received 
statements of interest from California, Oklahoma, and Alaska indicating 
that they wish to participate in the pilot program. FHWA received 
letters from Ohio and Texas declining the opportunity to participate in 
the pilot program. Accordingly, the FHWA currently has two open slots 
for other State departments of transportation (State DOT). These slots 
will be awarded on a competitive basis based on such factors as 
legislative authority to waive the State's sovereign immunity, 
financial and personnel capabilities to assume responsibilities, and 
description of plan and processes for carrying out assumed roles and 
responsibilities. If any State DOT has an interest in applying for this 
program, that State DOT should contact the FHWA Division Administrator 
in that State and should begin working with the FHWA in developing its 
application in accordance with the regulations found at 23 CFR Part 
773.

    Authority: Section 6005 of Pub. L. 109-59; 23 U.S.C. 315 and 
327; 49 CFR 1.48

    Issued on: June 28, 2007.
J. Richard Capka,
Federal Highway Administrator.
 [FR Doc. E7-13149 Filed 7-6-07; 8:45 am]
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