Transportation coordination and resources

Transportation services are provided in Wisconsin through a number of programs funded by the state and federal governments. Transit agencies, county governments, non-profit organizations, and private businesses deliver services to transportation disadvantaged individuals and the general public. Transportation coordination provides more rides to more consumers through cooperation, communication, and sharing resources.

Transportation coordination is a process where human service agencies, transportation providers, consumer groups, and public officials work together to develop and improve services for transportation disadvantaged individuals by ensuring that transportation resources funded by different programs are coordinated. Transportation disadvantaged individuals are unable to provide their own transportation as a result of disability, age-related condition, or income. Coordination demands communication, trust, flexibility, and the willingness to focus on client needs. It will:

  • Develop and improve transportation options
  • Improve access
  • Minimize service duplication
  • Facilitate appropriate, cost-effective transportation with available resources

Transportation Coordination Toolkit

Federal transit law, as amended by SAFETEA–LU (2005) and continued in MAP-21 (2012), requires that projects selected for funding under the Section 5310, Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities Program, be “derived from a locally developed, coordinated public transit-human services transportation plan” and that the plan be “developed through a process that includes representatives of public, private, and non-profit transportation and human services providers and participation by members of the public.”

In response to this requirement, the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) collaborated with Regional Planning Commission (RPC) planners to develop a coordination planning process and toolkit.

The toolkit is a resource only; use is not mandatory. If a county/multi-county agency chooses to use the resources contained in the toolkit, the requirements of the Federal Transit Administration and WisDOT will be met. The required elements of a coordinated public transit-human services transportation plan include:

  1. An assessment of available services that identifies current transportation providers (public, private, and non-profit)
  2. An assessment of the transportation needs for individuals with disabilities and older adults. This assessment can be based on the experiences and perceptions of the planning partners or on more sophisticated data collection efforts, as well as gaps in service
  3. Strategies, activities, and/or projects to address the identified gaps between current services and needs, as well as opportunities to improve efficiency in service delivery
  4. Priorities for implementation based on resources (from multiple program sources), time, and feasibility for implementing specific strategies and/or activities identified.

Wisconsin county coordination plans

Each county coordinated plan was developed through a public process and each plan has met the required elements of the federal requirements. Coordinated plans for air quality non-attainment areas and maintenance areas, as designated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, are required to be updated every four years and were completed in 2012. Plans for ozone attainment areas are required to be updated every five years and must be updated in 2013.

Wisconsin Model of Coordination

The Wisconsin Model of Coordination is the product of intensive research into available transportation resources in the state, best practices in peer states across the nation, and the unique characteristics and needs of communities throughout Wisconsin. Rather than being a complex, prescriptive model of how services must be delivered, it is a set of four strategies designed to move coordination forward, at both the state and local levels.

The four parts of the Wisconsin Model of Coordination are:

  1. Strengthen ICTC as the Lead Entity for Statewide Coordination Efforts – As the existing state body charged with transportation coordination, ICTC is best positioned to lead future efforts. Making ICTC a more permanent body with stable support will maintain its existing momentum and guide efforts on a statewide level.
  2. Encourage County and/or Regional Coordination Councils – Data from other states show the greatest coordination success arises from active, engaged, representative local coordination councils. ICTC can encourage them through clear expectations, technical assistance, and building on past efforts.
  3. Require County and/or Regional Coordination Councils – In other states, participation on a local coordination council is required for entities applying for state and federal transportation funding. Making this a requirement in Wisconsin will ensure better, more consistent service coordination across the state.
  4. Encourage Regionalization Through Incentives and Rewards – Often, the greatest transportation need exists for travel between communities or counties. Providing incentives for regional efforts will foster the growth of regional services based on resident needs rather than political boundaries.

Interagency Council on Transportation Coordination (ICTC)

The Interagency Council on Transportation Coordination (ICTC) was created in 2005 by Governor Doyle. The Council included representatives from the Wisconsin Departments of Transportation, Health Services, Veterans Affairs, Workforce Development, and the Office of the Commissioner of Insurance, each of which has transportation as part of their service programs. The ICTC is dedicated to creating a coordinated, accessible, affordable, dependable, and safe statewide system providing the best transportation services to transportation disadvantages individuals in Wisconsin. ICTC sponsored statewide coordination conferences and contracted with a national consultant to develop the Wisconsin Model of Coordination with implementation strategies. The ICTC is not actively meeting at this time.

ICTC Report to the Governor

Other resources

State and Federal Program Information

Local/State/Tribal Government Organizations

Advocacy Groups

National and State Organizations

Wisconsin resources