Memorandum for the Record

Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization

Unified Planning Work Program (UPWP) Committee

Meeting Summary

July 20, 2017, Meeting

9:15 AM to 9:45 AM, State Transportation Building—Conference Rooms 2 and 3,
10 Park Plaza, Boston, MA

Bryan Pounds, Chair, representing the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT)


The Unified Planning Work Program (UPWP) Committee agreed to the following:

      Approve the Meeting Summary from the June 15, 2017, UPWP Committee meeting

      Approve Proposed 3C Budget Adjustments for federal fiscal year (FFY) 2017


Materials for this meeting included the following:

1.    June 15, 2017, UPWP Committee Meeting Summary

2.    Progress Reports—3rd Quarter FFY 2017

3.    Proposed 3C Budget Adjustments for FFY 2017

Meeting Agenda and Summary of Discussion

1.    Introductions

Bryan Pounds (MassDOT), Chair of the UPWP Committee, called the meeting to order at approximately 9:15 AM. UPWP Committee members and Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) staff introduced themselves. (For attendance list, see page 4.)

2.    Vote to approve June 15, 2017, UPWP Committee Meeting Summary

B. Pounds called for a motion and a second to approve the meeting summary. Eric Bourassa (Metropolitan Area Planning Council [MAPC]) made a motion and several members seconded it. The Committee voted unanimously to approve the summary.

3.    Presentation of Progress Reports for 3rd Quarter FFY 2017

Karl Quackenbush (Central Transportation Planning Staff [CTPS] Executive Director) and Robin Mannion (CTPS Deputy Executive Director) presented the quarterly progress reports. K. Quackenbush noted that the committee members are conversant with the reports, so he would not explain in depth. (Dennis Crowley, SouthWest Advisory Planning Committee [SWAP]/Town of Medway, asked what the notation “oe” means on the charts. K. Quackenbush explained that it means “ongoing,” and covers programs that happen every year or covers core functions.)

D. Crowley asked if money that is not spent in one fiscal year rolls over to the next year. K. Quackenbush explained that staff attempt to spend the money—and the following agenda item would help that process—but occasionally some money cannot be fully spent (primarily due to changes in staff resources). Unspent money is unavailable for use in a subsequent fiscal year. B. Pounds and E. Bourassa noted that there are certain requirements for the use of these federal planning dollars that limit their use in other fiscal years. Some discussion ensued. D. Crowley proposed having a project ready to go to [at the end of a fiscal year] if money becomes available from another project. K. Quackenbush explained that this would not be the case, because money becomes available only as staff leave. D. Crowley asked if it’s normal for funds to be left over; B. Pounds answered that it is. K. Quackenbush added that the remaining amount varies from year to year.

There was further discussion about the potential permissibility of transferring these funds to a consultant for further work if staff is unavailable to spend the budgeted amount. There was a general sentiment that this would be difficult to process.

Steve Olanoff (TRIC/Town of Westwood) asked if the budget for the North-South Rail Link project assumed the MPO’s approval of proposed modifications at the meeting later in the day. K. Quackenbush answered affirmatively. S. Olanoff asked what is CTPS’s role in South Coast Rail; K. Quackenbush answered that it is primarily in travel demand modeling. There were several minor questions about other projects.

4.    Review of Proposed 3C Budget Adjustments for FFY 2017

K. Quackenbush presented the proposed budget adjustments to various programs. Staff typically presents these adjustments to the UPWP Committee and the MPO at the end of the 3rd quarter, seeking approval, in order to account for expected 4th quarter work. The adjustments result in a zero-sum budget, with no overall change in the total budget. Funds are moved from one project/program to another. UPWP budgets are developed approximately six months prior to the beginning of the fiscal year, and thus may require adjustments later in the fiscal year.

B. Pounds noted that the proposed amendments are normal, and he did not have any questions. E. Bourassa made a motion to approve the budget adjustments, and Tegin Teich Bennett (Regional Transportation Advisory Council [RTAC]/City of Cambridge) seconded. The motion passed unanimously.

5.    Member Items

There were none.

6.    Next Meeting

Sandy Johnston (UPWP Manager) noted that there is no upcoming meeting scheduled at the moment, but one would be scheduled to provide an update on the UPWP Study Recommendations Tracking Database, among other items. Lourenço Dantas (Certification Activities Group Manager) said it would likely be no later than first quarter FFY 2018.

D. Crowley asked again about leftover funds at the end of the fiscal year and whether some could be shifted around, within reason, without a formal approval process. K. Quackenbush noted that he would appreciate that flexibility. D. Crowley asked about a reasonable limit to such adjustments, and K. Quackenbush answered $5,000. B. Pounds noted that there would still be a process for such adjustments to allow for MassDOT approval. L. Dantas noted that his meeting would potentially cover the questions about the budget adjustment process, as well.

7.    Adjourn

A motion to adjourn was made and seconded by another member. The motion carried unanimously.




Massachusetts Department of Transportation

Bryan Pounds

Metropolitan Area Planning Council

Eric Bourassa

SWAP (Town of Medway)

Dennis Crowley

Regional Transportation Advisory Council

Tegin Teich Bennett

At-Large City (City of Newton)

David Koses

Inner Core Committee (City of Somerville)

Tom Bent

Three Rivers Interlocal Council

Steve Olanoff


MPO Staff/Central Transportation Planning Staff

Karl Quackenbush, Executive Director

Robin Mannion, Deputy Executive Director

Lourenço Dantas, Certification Activities Group Manager

Sandy Johnston, UPWP Manager