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Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership
H-GAC Transportation Policy Council
by John David Suayan
Sunday, July 24, 2016

The Houston-Galveston Area Council Transportation Policy Council on Friday voted unanimously to approve the transmittal of comments on the proposed 2017-2026 Unified Transportation Program to the Texas Department of Transportation. Listen (43:07)

H-GAC Director of Transportation Planning Alan Clark explained that the UTP is a 10-year document that describes how TxDOT intends to utilize resources to advance mobility, reduce crashes, preserve the current system, and meet the state’s economic challenges. Item Summary

Clark said that nearly $66 billion, which he called a “key number”, in state and federal transportation revenue, will be available for TxDOT programming through the UTP.

“That is a record investment over a 10-year period,” he stated. "It’s because of the additional funding approved by voters and the Texas Legislature, as well as a more robust federal transportation bill that has brought significant resources to TxDOT.”

The program includes approximately $40 billion in new programming from three main sources:

  • $10.2 billion from the federal FAST act, the end of “diversions” from the State Highway Fund, and remaining “unallocated” funds from future UTP years;
  • $6.3 billion from state proposition 1; and
  • $21.8 billion from state proposition 7.

Among the proposed comments and recommendations are placing significant emphasis on urban mobility and connectivity with more than 70 percent of additional funds devoted to these critical needs and a commitment by the Texas Transportation Commission to the more frequent and fundamental revision of the UTP.

TxDOT Deputy Executive Director Marc Williams reiterated Clark’s comments on the UTP from a statewide context.

The policy council voted unanimously to recognize outgoing Texas Transportation Commission member and former Denton County Judge Jeff Moseley for his service to the Houston-Galveston region and the state. Listen (5:35)

“Thank you so much for what you do,” said Moseley. “This is an important body, and your work here is really important to our region and our future.”

Moseley had been appointed to the commission in 2012 by then Governor Rick Perry, and recently resigned.

Chair and Brazoria County Judge Matt Sebesta said the policy council enjoyed working with Moseley.

“Thank you for being a strong voice for this region,” said Sebesta.

All other agenda items were approved unanimously. Agenda Attendance

The policy council listened to a presentation on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement for proposed high-speed rail between Houston and Dallas given by H-GAC Senior Planner Chelsea St. Louis and Holly Reed, Managing Director, External Affairs with Texas Central Partners, LLC. Listen (26:19)

The next meeting of the Transportation Policy Council is scheduled for August 26 at 9:30 a.m.

Dannenbaum Engineering BayTran
Remembering Jim Guidry

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