oregon transportation commission

Audit says ODOT is misaligned with governing body, commissioners vow change

by on February 2nd, 2017 at 5:42 pm

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ODOT Director Matt Garrett listens to a presentation about the audit from Tyler Duvall of McKinsey & Company.
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Oregon Department of Transportation Director Matt Garrett sat silenty for nearly two hours today while members of the Oregon Transportation Commission (OTC, ODOT’s governing body) probed deeper into an audit of the agency he has led since 2005.

ODOT got solid marks from auditors in some categories — like organizational culture and building and maintaining highways. But auditors also found the agency needs a clearer short-term plan and more effective coordination with its governing body, the OTC.
[Read more…]

New member of Oregon Transportation Commission is “avid cyclist”

by on May 26th, 2015 at 1:33 pm

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Sean O’Hollaren
(Photo: ODOT)

Oregon Governor Kate Brown has successfully added her first member to Oregon Transportation Commission and it appears like he’s got at least some some cycling experience.

Sean O’Hollaren, a former senior VP at Nike, fills a spot on the five-member committee that was left vacant when former Governor Kitzhaber fired Catherine Mater.

The OTC is the most powerful transportation body in the state. They approve funding, set ODOT policy, and “guide the planning development, and management” of our transportation network. There are five members, each representing a different region of the state.

The committee’s agenda items currently include the statewide transportation funding plan, a major update to the ODOT Bicycle and Pedestrian plan, federal TIGER grant funding, and more.
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Senate names two new members of Oregon Transportation Commission

by on June 2nd, 2014 at 12:06 pm

Alando Simpson (L) and Catherine Mater — your newest members of the Oregon Transportation Commission.
(Photos courtesy Simpson and Mater)

Last week the Oregon Senate confirmed two new members to the Oregon Transportation Commission (OTC): Catherine Mater, a civil engineer and business owner from Corvallis; and Alando Simpson, owner of City of Roses Disposal & Recycling in Portland. Simpson is also the first African-American on the commission since it was formed in 1913.[Read more…]

ODOT’s plans to change budget process ruffles local feathers

by on August 16th, 2012 at 3:55 pm

The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) and their policy-making arm the Oregon Transportation Commission (OTC) have proposed sweeping changes to how the state allocates transportation dollars and who gets to decide how those dollars are spent. The proposals come with a short timeline and advocates and elected officials in the region want several key changes before they’re adopted next month.

Saying that the changes are necessary because of dwindling revenues and a need to fund, “the most effective projects based on community and state values, rather than those that fit best into prescribed programs,” ODOT and the OTC are changing how the State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP) is managed. The STIP is a document that covers four years of capital projects. The 2015-2018 STIP, which ODOT is looking to apply changes to, will include a total of $960 million in projects across the state.

From what I’ve learned so far, there are two major parts to this story. The first is how bicycling will be impacted by the funding changes; and the second is who the ODOT/OTC will appoint to the advisory bodies that decide which projects get on the funding list.
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Remembering Gail Achterman

by on January 28th, 2012 at 11:56 pm

Gail Achterman speaking at the Oregon Bike Summit in April 2008. She died Saturday afternoon.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

Gail Achterman, known and respected by many for her role in setting Oregon transportation policy, died this afternoon after a bout with pancreatic cancer. She was 62 years old.
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Race heats up for top spot on Oregon Transportation Commission

by on October 26th, 2011 at 3:53 pm

A day in Salem-3

ODOT headquarters in Salem.
(Photo © J. Maus)

The Oregon Transportation Commission is where the rubber meets the road and path when it comes to setting transportation policy in Oregon. This powerful group plays a key role in framing the discussion about transportation priorities in our state and they also hold the purse strings when it comes to project funding.
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Chair of Oregon Transportation Commission resigns due to health reasons

by on August 26th, 2011 at 11:39 am

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Achterman speaking at the
2008 Oregon Bike Summit.
(Photos © J. Maus)

Gail Achterman is stepping down from her role as Chair of the Oregon Transportation Commission due to health reasons.

The announcement came via email from Director of ODOT Matt Garrett yesterday, who said Achterman, “has significant health issues that require her full attention and energies.” According to a website where Achterman has been sharing updates about her condition, she has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

Here’s more from Garrett:[Read more…]

Legislature appoints two new members to Oregon Transportation Commission

by on June 9th, 2011 at 9:12 am

Tammy Baney

The Oregon Transportation Commission, an influential group appointed by the Governor to establish state transportation policy, will welcome two new members at the end of this month.

Legislators in Salem voted yesterday to approve the nominations of Mark Frohnmayer and Tammy Baney.

Frohnmayer is the son of former University of Oregon President David Frohnmayer. The younger Frohnmayer is a former video game programmer and entrepreneur who is now the president of Eugene-based electric vehicle (EV) company Arcimoto. Frohnmayer is also on the board of Drive Oregon, an EV initiative that is partially funded by the State of Oregon.
[Read more…]

It’s official, Portland nabs nearly $3 million for biking/walking projects

by on February 18th, 2011 at 9:21 am

The great news we reported last month is now official: The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) announced yesterday that they’ve received $2.96 million from the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) for two projects that will vastly improve biking and walking conditions in North and East Portland.

The Portland projects are two out of 27 that the Oregon Transportation Commission (OTC) has decided to fund from a $20 million pot of federal “flexible funds” set aside specifically for non-highway projects. PBOT has received $2,090,372 for the Going to the River project and $870,000 for a project on SE 122nd Avenue.
[Read more…]

Follow-up: TriMet to get $4.5 million in ODOT Flex Funds

by on February 16th, 2011 at 9:38 am

Earlier this month, TriMet — in a last-ditch effort to fill the local funding gap in their $1.5 billion Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail project — put in a request for a 10-year, $19 million funding commitment from the State of Oregon.

Artist rendering of Portland-Milwaukie light rail line.

The request raised serious concerns with transportation officials around the state for a variety of reasons. Some were concerned that TriMet was muscling into one of the very rare dedicated funding sources available to non-highway projects anywhere in the state (These non-highway “Flexible Funds” are a relatively small pot of money totaling about $20 million) and that the multi-year commitment would unfairly compromise the availability of funds for other projects. [Read more…]