MATS Policy Minutes – Aug. 4, 2021

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MATS Policy Meeting

August 4, 2021


A meeting of the MATS Policy Committee was held on Aug. 4, 2021, in the Macon-Bibb Planning & Zoning Commission conference room. There were seven voting members in attendance thereby establishing a quorum. The meeting agenda and the minutes of the previous meeting were introduced and approved. Under Committee Reports, John Ricketson gave a summary of the last CAC meeting that was held in July. Mike Greenwald also provided an overview of the MATS Technical meeting that was conducted before the Policy Meeting.

The first item discussed on the agenda was the Title VI Plan Update by Mike Greenwald. Title Vi refers to Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which prohibits discrimination against anyone that is a participant in a federally assisted program. The Macon-Bibb Planning & Zoning Commission submits a Title Vi Report Update each year in regard to transit service. The most recent Title VI Plan and other documents were submitted in June 2021. This included a plan to ensure meaningful access to services for individuals who have limited English proficiency (LEP). Translation services and documents are required for each LEP group if they constitute 5% of the population or 1,000 persons, whichever is less. A Language Assistance Plan (LAP) is needed to show compliance with the LEP requirements if they are applicable. Currently, the MATS area is below the population threshold required . However, MATS has been advised that in the future a LAP will be required regardless of the population threshold. Therefore, a review of the necessary document updates is currently underway in order to address this issue.

The next agenda item was the MATS By-laws and Participation Plan presented by Mike Greenwald. Recently, the GDOT Planning Office asked MATS to change the voting membership on the Policy Committee from the GDOT Commissioner to the GDOT Planning Director. This will require a change to the MATS By-laws and the Participation Plan. This item was presented for discussion only because any revisions to by-laws can’t be adopted until the next series of MATS meetings in the fall.

Rachel Umana from Bike Walk Macon discussed the next item which was the Pedestrian Safety Review Board (PSRB). This board was formed in 2015 and has been designated by the Macon-Bibb Commission to find ways to keep pedestrians safe along the county roads and streets. The board is comprised of individuals from governmental and nonprofit organizations and has received grants from the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety. The PSRB meets monthly and has five priority areas which include a Public Communication area and Policy & Legislation area that focuses on Complete Streets. The concept of Complete Streets is designed and operated to enable safe access for all users including pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists, and public transit riders. People of all ages and abilities are able to safely move along a complete street. Recently, the Macon-Bibb Commission passed a complete streets ordinance which provides safety and health benefits for people of all different ages.

Harland Smith of Georgia DOT presented the Project Status Report. He reviewed the projects currently under construction and gave an update of the recent project changes.  Under New Business, Bob Komlo of the CAC discussed the synchronization of traffic lights. He stated that there is a problem in the downtown area with the traffic lights. There should be a better synchronization of lights in order to improve the traffic flow. This matter has been brought up with the Traffic Engineers Office. Mike Greenwald discussed the LRTP Subcommittee which is being formed at the request of FHWA and GDOT. This Subcommittee will provide input regarding the 2050 future developments patterns and air quality conformity. There will also be regularly scheduled meetings during FY 2022. Being no further business to discuss, the meeting was adjourned.