NEPA Changes For Local Government
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NEPA Changes For Local Government

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NEPA Changes For Local Government NEPA Changes For Local Government Presentation Transcript

  • A New Approach to NEPA for County Projects November 17, 2011
  • NEPA
    • National Environmental Policy Act
    • Applies to decisions by federal agencies
      • For example, funding BRO, STP projects
      • Projects requiring Corps Permits
    • Multidisciplinary approach to consider social and environmental effects of a project, and include measures to minimize harm
  • NEPA
    • Purpose and Need
      • What is the problem to be solved?
    • Range of Alternatives
    • Tribal, Public and Agency Involvement
      • Tribal Consultation by ODOT
      • Property owner notices by the County
      • Public meetings by the County
      • Agency Consultation by ODOT
  • NEPA
    • Public parks, Wildlife Management Areas and Historic sites, districts, and structures (including bridges) receive extra protection. Alternates “using” these resources must be shown to have no other “prudent and feasible” option. This will require coordination with the County’s engineers.
  • Changes to Process
    • All County NEPA work is now Task Ordered to an ODOT contracted qualified consultant
    • Costs still paid by ODOT
    • Existing NEPA Procedures are the same
    • County involved with setting the Milestone schedule in the Task Order
    • County will review and approve changes to the schedule
    • County will sign the NEPA document
  • The Benefits…
    • No More “Black Box”
    • More one-on-one coordination with County Commissioners and County Engineers
    • Direct involvement between the NEPA consultant and the County Commissioner and their design engineer will result in less chance of “fumbles” and miscommunications.
    • Project Changes that can result in schedule problems will be identified earlier.
    • Sometimes design modifications can speed NEPA
  • Getting Started
    • A complete and accurate Project Checklist and Footprint provided to ODOT is critical to a quick start…
    • If all required information is received, then the County will be asked to select from ODOT’s list of contracted NEPA consultants (Rank top 3)
    • Consultant availability is subject to contract capacity constraints.
  • New NEPA Consultants
  • New NEPA Consultants
    • C.H. Guernsey & Company
  • New NEPA Consultants
    • C.H. Guernsey & Company
    • CP&Y, Inc.
  • New NEPA Consultants
    • C.H. Guernsey & Company
    • CP&Y, Inc.
    • Enercon Services, Inc.
  • New NEPA Consultants
    • C.H. Guernsey & Company
    • CP&Y, Inc.
    • Enercon Services, Inc.
    • EST, Inc.
  • New NEPA Consultants
    • C.H. Guernsey & Company
    • CP&Y, Inc.
    • Enercon Services, Inc.
    • EST, Inc.
    • Garver, LLC
  • New NEPA Consultants
    • C.H. Guernsey & Company
    • CP&Y, Inc.
    • Enercon Services, Inc.
    • EST, Inc.
    • Garver, LLC
    • H.W. Lochner, Inc.
  • New NEPA Consultants
    • C.H. Guernsey & Company
    • CP&Y, Inc.
    • Enercon Services, Inc.
    • EST, Inc.
    • Garver, LLC
    • H.W. Lochner, Inc.
    • Jacobs Engineering Group, Inc.
  • New NEPA Consultants
    • C.H. Guernsey & Company
    • CP&Y, Inc.
    • Enercon Services, Inc.
    • EST, Inc.
    • Garver, LLC
    • H.W. Lochner, Inc.
    • Jacobs Engineering Group, Inc.
    • Kleinfelder Central, Inc.
  • New NEPA Contract Consultants
    • C.H. Guernsey & Company
    • CP&Y, Inc.
    • Enercon Services, Inc.
    • EST, Inc.
    • Garver, LLC
    • H.W. Lochner, Inc.
    • Jacobs Engineering Group, Inc.
    • Kleinfelder Central, Inc.
    • Limited capacity available with these current Consultants:
    • Cobb
    • URS
  • Getting Started
    • Local Government and Environmental Programs will arrange for a meeting to discuss NEPA scope and milestone schedule. The County Commissioner and their design engineer will need attend in person or by conference call
    • Once the Task Order is issued, the consultant acts as the ODOT NEPA Project Manager.
  • Staying in the Loop
    • The Consultants will be working directly with the County and the designer to perform needed studies. Information needs are coordinated directly between these parties.
    • The County will receive Monthly Progress reports, and be copied on all inquiries and coordination between the consultant and ODOT.
  • Getting to the Finish Line
    • Once all studies (and preliminary plans needed to complete the studies) and agency consultations (by ODOT) are complete, the Consultant will prepare a draft NEPA document to submit to ODOT.
    • Once this document meets a procedural check, the Consultant will prepare the NEPA document and obtain the County Commissioner’s signature.
    • The document is then submitted to ODOT and FHWA approval, if appropriate
  • “What Am I Signing?”
    • The NEPA document is a decision document that leads to the eligibility of federal funds
    • Commitments identified in the document must be incorporated in the project. (404 permit, avoidance of impacts to endangered species, marketing historic bridges, etc.)
    • Federal funding is contingent upon fulfilling these commitments
    • Please ask for explanations and understand what the project will require
  • A few points of emphasis:
    • Tribal and Resource Agency Consultation must be done by ODOT only. FHWA will not allow this work to be delegated by ODOT.
    • The NEPA process cannot begin until a complete checklist and footprint is approved, and a consultant Task Order is issued.
  • A few points of emphasis:
    • Preliminary plans with proposed temporary and permanent R/W must be available in order to complete NEPA. Footprint and plans must be consistent.
    • NEPA documents have a 3 year “Shelf Life”. Projects that are not let with 3 years of the NEPA approval may require additional studies…
  • New Streamlining Effort
    • ODOT and FHWA have a new Programmatic Agreement
    • Allows ODOT to certify the NEPA document for FHWA
    • Expedites some projects
  • Timeline
    • 8 months for a typical bridge project or 1 mile of roadway
    • Longer, more complex projects, or Projects involving historic structures, parks, or endangered species will take longer
    • These issues generally require additional engineering and public involvement. The faster this is done the faster the project can be cleared.
  • ?????
    • What if the County wants to use a NEPA consultant that isn’t on the list?
      • The County may elect to directly hire NEPA. ODOT will provide the required scope of work to assist the County in negotiation of scope and fee. The required NEPA process, including ODOT led consultation, is the same.
    • Additional Questions?
  • ODOT Contacts
    • Dawn Sullivan, ODOT Environmental Programs Div. Engineer - 405-521-2927
    • Siv Sundaram, Assistant Division Engineer
      • Environmental Programs - 405-522-3791