Draft Memorandum for the Record

Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization Unified Planning Work Program Committee Meeting Summary

August 5, 2021 Meeting

9:00 AM–9:30 AM, Zoom Video Conferencing Platform, recording: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eBxZFKJtyhk

Benjamin Muller, Chair, representing Jamey Tesler, Secretary of Transportation and Chief Executive Officer of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT)


The Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization’s (MPO) Unified Planning Work Program (UPWP) Committee agreed to the following:


Materials for this meeting included the following:

1.    Summary of the July 1, 2021, meeting

2.    Summary of the July 15, 2021, meeting

3.    Amendment One to the FFY 2021 UPWP, including explanatory memorandum and mockup of amended UPWP

Meeting Agenda and Summary of Discussion

1.    Introductions

B. Muller read the introduction, guidelines, and accessibility statement and called the roll.

2.    Public Comments

There were none.

3.    Meeting Summary of July 1, 2021—Approval of this summary

A motion to approve the summary was made by Tom Bent (City of Somerville/Inner Core Committee and seconded by Eric Bourassa (Metropolitan Area Planning Council [MAPC]). The motion carried unanimously.

4.    Meeting Summary of July 15, 2021—Approval of this summary

A motion to approve the summary was made by E. Bourassa and seconded by T. Bent. The motion carried unanimously.

5.    Action Item: FFY 2021 UPWP Amendment One—Sandy Johnston, UPWP Manager

S. Johnston introduced the amendment, asking the committee to vote to recommend that the MPO release it for public comment at its 10:00 AM meeting. He reminded the committee that staff typically bring an amendment at the beginning of or during the fourth quarter of a given FFY to adjust budgets and (sometimes) UPWP content to reflect changes that have happened during the year. For FFY 2021, the Federal Highway Administration requires any change of 10 percent or greater to a single budget line to be contained in an amendment. Overall, these changes are budget-neutral, and the topline numbers programmed in the UPWP have not changed. UPWP budgets are developed in advance; in this case, May of 2020. Throughout the FFY, MPO staff track spending on 3C line items and report quarterly to the UPWP Committee using a “Schedule of Operations.” At the end of the third quarter, MPO staff will complete a thorough assessment of the spending patterns in the FFY to date and propose a slate of budget adjustments for the final quarter. Two major drivers behind the changes proposed in this amendment are changes in project need and scope, many of them driven by COVID-19 and staff attrition and leave, resulting in need to reallocate staff time.

In addition to changes to work by Central Transportation Planning Staff (CTPS), this amendment contains a minor adjustment to a couple of subtasks in Chapter 7, the section of UPWP funding allocated to MAPC. The details are included in the memo. Because this modification does not change the topline number for a UPWP task, it is not captured in the accompanying table and does not change any budget tables within the document itself.

Steve Olanoff (Town of Westwood/TRIC subregion alternate) asked about the specifics of several projects with particularly large budget changes. Mark Abbott (CTPS Traffic Analysis and Design Group Manager) explained that the changes were due to COVID-19 affecting timelines for both FFY 2020 and FFY 2021 studies. Bill Conroy (City of Boston) asked if locations for some studies had been identified, and M. Abbott responded affirmatively.

Lenard Diggins (Regional Transportation Advisory Council) made a motion to recommend the amendment to the MPO, which was seconded by Daniel Amstutz (Town of Arlington). He also asked about the reasoning for moving money out of the Transportation Equity Program budget, and S. Johnston explained that the program manager has been assigned to other work. B. Muller and M. Abbott discussed plans to restore regular schedules for studies in the wake of COVID-19 disruptions.

B. Muller called the roll to recommend the amendment and it passed unanimously.

6.    Members Items

B. Muller announced that he has taken a new position within MassDOT, and so the committee would have a new chair starting at the August 19 meeting or later. Members of the committee congratulated him.

7.    Next Meeting

The next meeting was scheduled for August 19, to recommend that the MPO endorse the FFY 2022 UPWP.

8.    Adjourn

A motion to adjourn was made by E. Bourassa and seconded by T. Bent. Without objection, the meeting adjourned.




and Alternates

Massachusetts Department of Transportation (Office of Transportation Planning)

Ben Muller

Metropolitan Area Planning Council

Eric Bourassa

Regional Transportation Advisory Council

Lenard Diggins

At-Large City (City of Newton)

David Koses

At-Large Town (Town of Arlington)

Daniel Amstutz

City of Boston (Boston Transportation Department)

Bill Conroy

Inner Core Committee (City of Somerville)

Tom Bent

MetroWest Regional Collaborative (City of Framingham)

Erika Oliver Jerram

Three Rivers Interlocal Council alternate (Town of Westwood)

Steve Olanoff

City of Framingham (Metrowest Regional Collaborative)



Other Attendees


Wesley Lickus


Gus Norrbom


Derek Shooster


Amira Patterson

MBTA Advisory Council


MPO Staff/Central Transportation Planning Staff

Tegin Teich, Executive Director

Hiral Gandhi, Director of Operations and Finance

Mark Abbott, Traffic Analysis and Design Group Manager

Jonathan Church, Manager of MPO Activities

Sandy Johnston, UPWP Manager

Kate White, Public Outreach Coordinator



The Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) operates its programs, services, and activities in compliance with federal nondiscrimination laws including Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VI), the Civil Rights Restoration Act of 1987, and related statutes and regulations. Title VI prohibits discrimination in federally assisted programs and requires that no person in the United States of America shall, on the grounds of race, color, or national origin (including limited English proficiency), be excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, or be otherwise subjected to discrimination under any program or activity that receives federal assistance. Related federal nondiscrimination laws administered by the Federal Highway Administration, Federal Transit Administration, or both, prohibit discrimination on the basis of age, sex, and disability. The Boston Region MPO considers these protected populations in its Title VI Programs, consistent with federal interpretation and administration. In addition, the Boston Region MPO provides meaningful access to its programs, services, and activities to individuals with limited English proficiency, in compliance with U.S. Department of Transportation policy and guidance on federal Executive Order 13166.

The Boston Region MPO also complies with the Massachusetts Public Accommodation Law, M.G.L. c 272 sections 92a, 98, 98a, which prohibits making any distinction, discrimination, or restriction in admission to, or treatment in a place of public accommodation based on race, color, religious creed, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, disability, or ancestry. Likewise, the Boston Region MPO complies with the Governor's Executive Order 526, section 4, which requires that all programs, activities, and services provided, performed, licensed, chartered, funded, regulated, or contracted for by the state shall be conducted without unlawful discrimination based on race, color, age, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, religion, creed, ancestry, national origin, disability, veteran's status (including Vietnam-era veterans), or background.

A complaint form and additional information can be obtained by contacting the MPO or at http://www.bostonmpo.org/mpo_non_discrimination. To request this information in a different language or in an accessible format, please contact

Title VI Specialist
Boston Region MPO
10 Park Plaza, Suite 2150
Boston, MA 02116

By Telephone:
857.702.3702 (voice)

For people with hearing or speaking difficulties, connect through the state MassRelay service:

·         Relay Using TTY or Hearing Carry-over: 800.439.2370

·         Relay Using Voice Carry-over: 866.887.6619

·         Relay Using Text to Speech: 866.645.9870

For more information, including numbers for Spanish speakers, visit https://www.mass.gov/massrelay