Establishment of MVP for Transportation as an Independent Non-Profit
On March 16, 2022, the Pre-MPO Steering Committee recommended to the Pre-MPO Policy Board that MVP for Transportation (MVP) be formed as an independent 501(c)3 non-profit organization. On March 16th, 2022, the Pre-MPO Policy Board approved the decision to establish MVP as an independent non-profit. Several considerations informed the decision to establish MVP as an independent non-profit organization including greater autonomy to conduct a continuing, comprehensive, and cooperative (3C’s) transportation planning process for the Mat-Su region (as required by 49 U.S. Code § 5303 - Metropolitan transportation planning), the ability to apply for a wider range of grant funding opportunities as a 501(c)3 non-profit, and ensuring local control of transportation planning activities to best respond to local needs. After final approval by the Governor, MVP will be led by the official Policy Board, comprised of elected and appointed representatives from local government agencies including the Mat-Su Borough, cities of Wasilla and Palmer, tribal governments Knik Tribe and Chickaloon Village Traditional Council, as well as one State of Alaska DOT&PF seat.
The MPO does not and will not have taxing authority. The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and Federal Transit Authority (FTA) will provide the operating funds through the Metropolitan Planning Program (MPP), which are then dispersed to the MPO through the State of Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (DOT&PF). The MPO will use these funds to conduct a continuing, cooperative, comprehensive performance-based multimodal transportation planning process, including the development of short and long-range plans, such as the Metropolitan Transportation Plan (MTP) and a Transportation Improvement Program (TIP). The MPO operates and expends its funding within an area called the Metropolitan Planning Area (MPA). The MPA boundary is currently under development and will include at least the urbanized area as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau and the contiguous area expected to become urbanized within a 20-year forecast period (23 CFR 450.312). In Alaska, MPP funds require a 9.03% non-federal match share that will be provided by the MPO’s member agencies through membership dues and an annual fee structure. MVP for Transportation is expected to receive $400,000 – $500,000 for its annual operations to carry out required planning processes.
Once the MPO is designated by the Governor, the MPO will plan for the implementation of transportation capital improvement projects through the TIP. MVP for Transportation is expected to receive about $10 million of federal funds annually for these projects. The Alaska DOT&PF maintains a population-based formula to determine how these federal transportation funds are equitably disbursed to existing Alaskan MPOs (FAST Planning in Fairbanks and AMATs in Anchorage). DOT&PF is currently in the process of updating its formula to account for the establishment of MVP for Transportation in the Mat-Su Valley.
Metropolitan Planning Area Boundary Development
The MPO Boundary, known as the Metropolitan Planning Area (MPA) is currently being developed. To learn more about the boundary development process and how to get involved, visit the Boundary Development Process page. The MPA boundary will include at least the urbanized area as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau in the 2020 decennial census and also the contiguous area expected to become urbanized within a 20-year forecast period (23 CFR 450.312). The MPA is the area in which the MPO operates and is able to disburse its federal transportation planning and capital funds.