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Tribal Transportation Infrastructure Development
and Program Management



The Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act has created new opportunities for tribes to improve the poor state of roads and bridges in Indian Country. Most Tribes operate their own transportation departments with funding received through the Highway Trust Fund and have demonstrated capacity to provide their members and the public with safe and reliable roads, bridges and transit services. The effectiveness of such programs is essential to stimulating commerce, job creation and economic development in Indian Country. Now a new Tribal Transportation Self Governance Program has been established at the U.S. Department of Transportation and a negotiated rulemaking process is underway that will enable tribes to carry out all their transportation activities through one agreement with the US DOT.

This class offers a comprehensive look at the opportunities and challenges ahead for tribal transportation infrastructure and policy. We will provide an overview of federal transportation programs and funding, explore key concepts and implementation issues in the extension of Tribal Self Governance to the US DOT, and examine approaches and lessons learned for effective administration of tribal transportation programs.

T O P I C S   I N C L U D E
Federal Transportation Programs and Funding
  • Tribal Transportation Program
  • Rural Transit Program/Tribal Transit Program
  • Tribal Safety Program
  • TIGER, FASTLANE and other competitive grant programs
  • Innovative Financing Programs and Resources
  • Road Maintenance Program and strategies for preserving tribal and federal infrastructure investment in Indian Country
  • FEMA Disaster Declarations and Emergency Relief
  • 25 CFR Part 170 and pending revisions
The New Tribal Self-Governance Program at DOT
  • Objectives and Opportunities
  • The Negotiated Rulemaking Process and Status
Collaboration with and Securing Support from State DOTs and local governments
  • Transferring State Federal Aid Funds through 202(a)(9) agreements
  • The STP Block Grant Program
  • Maintenance Agreements and other project partnership approaches
Approaches for Effective Administration of Transportation Programs
  • Walk-through contractual vehicles available for tribes
  • Pros and Cons of various contractual vehicles
  • Transportation Planning, Long Range Transportation Plans and Funding Sources
  • Program and Project Management Requirements and Best Practices
  • Managing procurement and Employment
  • Tribal and Indian Preferences in hiring and contracting
  • Implementing Tribal Employment Rights Ordinances
  • Progress inspections and Reporting
  • Financial management and auditing
  • Bonding and Insurance Issues
  • Dual Language Signage
  • Cultural Access Roads
  • Managing intermodal transportation systems
  • Engaging dialogue and problem solving with federal, state, local and tribal agencies

*Topics subject to change.

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