Now that ClimatePlan's Transportation Funding Report Card is released, here are some answers to questions you may have about it. Find the report card now at:
How do I use the transportation funding report card?
Each program has a specific page that outlines the score, the specific limitations with the program scoring, and short and long-term recommendations. (It starts on page 9).
- You can advocate for short and long-term recommendations. For long-term recommendations, there may be additional steps not covered in the report. (See the next question for programs that could be prioritized).
- For programs that score well, look at the recommendations from other researchers and community advocates. These reports are cited as sources.
When is the next time we can advocate for some of the recommendations in the report card?
Most programs in the report card have already finalized their guidelines, or are quickly wrapping up the finalization process. However, there are ways to advocate for recommendations that are outside of these program guidelines’ process.
Workshops Still Happening
Two programs that are “ending their finalization” soon are Solutions for Congested Corridors and Trade Corridor Enhancement Program. Program staff hope to get any feedback before May so that they can incorporate it in the draft presented to the commissioners at CTC. The report card has used the updated version of the guidelines to inform the scoring, but it doesn’t look at the new equity evaluation criteria or equity supplement. It can be good to focus feedback here and advocate for the short-term recommendations. To register for workshops: click this link https://catc.ca.gov/meetings-events/workshops .
For the Affordable Housing Sustainable Communities program, the Strategic Growth Council is in the process of drafting Round 7 guidelines. In May or June, there will be a second round of stakeholder listening sessions; you can email [email protected] if you are interested. For more on the timeline, visit https://sgc.ca.gov/programs/ahsc/ .
Ways to Advocate Outside of Guideline Workshops
- State transportation agencies are creating a plan to electrify freight, under the legislation SB 671: so, look out for workshops titled Senate Bill 671 Workgroup. In these workshops, staff and stakeholders are examining what are the appropriate freight corridors to implement electrification technology, developing clean freight guidelines, and including considerations of road safety and congestion. The criteria developed here will be integrated into freight funding programs (like TCEP). These workshops can be an important place to get involved if you are interested in equity and climate resilience within the freight sector. There are no new workshops scheduled, but you can look at this page to see if there are any updates: https://catc.ca.gov/meetings-events/workshops .
- If you are part of the ClimatePlan network, you are invited to be part of the conversations we will have with agencies about the grades and recommendations. If you are interested, please feel free to reach out to [email protected]
- The California Air Resources Board is hosting conversations around funding priorities for the California Climate Investments, which encompass STEP, AHSC, and TCC. This process generally allocates Cap and Trade dollars to these programs through public workshops. You can advocate for these programs, making note of changes you want to see in the guidelines.
How are the agencies listed in the report responding?
Before the report card release, we shared our initial findings with each agency graded. They had the opportunity to provide feedback on their program’s grade. We tried to incorporate their feedback as much as possible: we included the program nuances in the program analysis and expanded our review to also include statute and publicly available information. Now that the report card is finalized, we are scheduling meetings with each agency to discuss how we can work together to incorporate the recommendations.
There are some other programs that would have been great to see graded, how did you select the programs you chose?
We selected programs that the ClimatePlan network advocates for the most. For example, the ClimatePlan network and staff have engaged with most of the SB 1 programs. We also wanted to select programs that were known to integrate transportation with other intersections like climate resilience, equity, and housing. We then narrowed down the selection after deciding what criteria we wanted to evaluate the programs on. For example, we originally included programs that built capacity, like Partners Advancing Climate Equity, but realized that the criteria would be a little different for these questions.
Some of the grades feel lenient, why is that?
The grades are lenient admittedly because the point allocation system was very simple and could not account for all the nuances within the program. So for example, one of the criteria, they automatically got two points if it was a yes. With this type of point allocation, we could only grade the intent of this program, and not the outcome. In future iterations, we hope to update the scoring criteria to better reflect the strength of the program, and tie it to outcomes.
How can I stay involved? And do I have to be a part of the ClimatePlan network to be involved?
- For some actions, yes. ClimatePlan is actively hosting conversations within our workgroups and with state agencies to align funding. To be part of these conversations, you have to be part of the network.
Another way to stay involved is to join ClimatePlan’s AB 2438 effort. This legislation that we are co-sponsoring essentially requires big state transportation funding programs to align with the state planning that integrates climate, health, and equity goals and legislation that outlines the state’s climate goals. For more information on the bill, check out our blog https://www.climateplan.org/climateplan_co_sponsors_ab_2438 .
- Sign-up here in this google form with your capacity to engage and support the conversation: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSd5XVUJ4m7kEc4vYYpjqcWCFtoT22zqP6V6KWeOw6flSDEKQQ/viewform
What are other programs that ClimatePlan is tracking but are not included in the report?
ClimatePlan is tracking various transportation programs. Along with some other programs like Partners Advancing Climate Equity (PACE) (administered by the Strategic Growth Council), Regional Early Action Planning (REAP) (administered by the California Department of Housing), the governor’s budget process, and the federal infrastructure grant.