National Academies Press: OpenBook

Fix It, Sign It or Close It: State of Good Repair in an Era of Budget Constraints (2021)


Page 28
Suggested Citation:"APPENDIX A TRANSIT INTERVIEW QUESTIONS." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Fix It, Sign It or Close It: State of Good Repair in an Era of Budget Constraints. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26266.
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28 TCRP LRD 57 / NCHRP LRD 84 If a facility or route is under consideration for closure, is the public notified? If not, when is the public notified? If the pub- lic has concerns or complaints relating to the potential closure, how are they addressed? i.e. town hall meetings, press releases, posters? When public outreach is done, are multiple languages used? Have complaints about changes been made by minority groups? If so, how are those complaints addressed? How do you ensure that appropriate public outreach efforts are being done? How are Environmental Justice concepts considered during the planning process? If the facility or equipment that is under consideration for clo- sure was provided via funding by a federal agency, is the federal funding agency involved in the decision-making process? How is that the decision made? Might funds need to be returned to the funding agency? Has the agency returned funds to its fund- ing agency in this situation? Are other sources of funding sought from partner agencies or federal or state channels? If outside funding is sought and pro- vided, has the agency faced a legal challenge or other obstacles to that funding? Has the agency changed or eliminated routes as a result of its asset management process? If yes, did the agency consider the possibility of a civil rights complaint while it considered the clo- sure or change in access? Has the agency ever responded to a civil rights complaint about the closure or restriction of a route or fleet size? Or anything else? If so, please provide details. Are plans, such as an asset management plan, used to determine the priority of the infrastructure or asset repair? Is the public involved in the process? How? If closures or restrictions in service have been made for safe- ty reasons, what lessons were learned by the agencies as they worked through the decision-making process? Have any poli- cies or best practices been established that allow or require re- view by management and/or a governing Commission? APPENDIX A TRANSIT INTERVIEW QUESTIONS The National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) has initiated a legal research study which will review current practices of transit agencies and state DOTs which are addressing budget limitations. If funds are unavailable for repair of infrastructure or equipment, agencies may need to consider whether to limit services or restrict access to them. The re- search project is intended to provide guidance which will assist transportation agencies that are faced with decisions about the potential repercussions of repairing, improving, re-building or simply closing a facility. The attached survey is part of this effort. Results will be reviewed and compiled for the publication of a research document which is tentatively titled “Fix It, Sign It, or Close It: State of Good Repair in an Era of Budget Constraints.” Please provide the following Background Information: Name and Title Name of Agency E-mail Address Phone Number Does your state have a law or rule that identifies the standard of care that must be used by the agency for vehicles and equip- ment? The agency may rely on the federal definition of “State of Good Repair.” Please provide a citation or the text of the law if different than the federal rule. Does your agency have its own definition of “State of Good Repair? Please provide the text or a link to the document that defines “State of Good Repair” to the agency if applicable. A different standard of care may apply to property or the care taken by people who operate motor vehicles. Please identify if applicable. When the agency has knowledge of a potential “dangerous con- dition” or condition that is less than optimal on its property, what measures are taken to address it? Is the hierarchy of sign- ing for it, fixing it, or closing it followed? How does the agency work through those decision-making steps? Has the agency been involved with any litigation that relates to closing a facility or route or restricting access to a facility or route? If yes, please provide details and contact information for the attorney that handled the matter. Have bus stops, rail stations or parking lots or other facilities been closed due to disrepair? If so, what alternatives are pro- vided, if any? Has the agency stopped providing routes based on safety of vehicles or inability to secure drivers with the proper qualifications? Please explain if the answer is yes.

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The condition of the transportation infrastructure in the United States is an issue of national importance. State departments of transportation and transit agencies face tough choices as they make decisions about how and when to keep their assets safely open to the public.

The TRB Transit Cooperative Research Program and National Cooperative Highway Research Program's TCRP Legal Research Digest 57/NCHRP Legal Research Digest 84: Fix It, Sign It or Close It: State of Good Repair in an Era of Budget Constraints addresses the legal ramifications to transportation agencies that have to decide whether to repair, improve, or rebuild assets that are in poor repair.


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