49 U.S. Code § 304 - Application of categorical exclusions for multimodal projects

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(a) Definitions.— In this section, the following definitions apply:
(1) Cooperating authority.— The term “cooperating authority” means a Department of Transportation operating authority that is not the lead authority with respect to a project.
(2) Lead authority.— The term “lead authority” means a Department of Transportation operating administration or secretarial office that—
(A) is the lead authority over a proposed multimodal project; and
(B) has determined that the components of the project that fall under the modal expertise of the lead authority—
(i) satisfy the conditions for a categorical exclusion under implementing regulations or procedures of the lead authority under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.); and
(ii) do not require the preparation of an environmental assessment or environmental impact statement under that Act.
(3) Multimodal project.— The term “multimodal project” has the meaning given the term in section 139 (a) of title 23.
(b) Exercise of Authorities.— The authorities granted in this section may be exercised for a multimodal project, class of projects, or program of projects that are carried out under this title.
(c) Application of Categorical Exclusions for Multimodal Projects.— In considering the environmental impacts of a proposed multimodal project, a lead authority may apply a categorical exclusion designated under the implementing regulations or procedures of a cooperating authority for other components of the project, subject to the conditions that—
(1) the multimodal project is funded under 1 grant agreement administered by the lead authority;
(2) the multimodal project has components that require the expertise of a cooperating authority to assess the environmental impacts of the components;
(3) the component of the project to be covered by the categorical exclusion of the cooperating authority has independent utility;
(4) the cooperating authority, in consultation with the lead authority—
(A) follows implementing regulations or procedures under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.); and
(B) determines that a categorical exclusion under that Act applies to the components; and
(5) the lead authority has determined that—
(A) the project, using the categorical exclusions of the lead authority and each applicable cooperating authority, does not individually or cumulatively have a significant impact on the environment; and
(B) extraordinary circumstances do not exist that merit additional analysis and documentation in an environmental impact statement or environmental assessment required under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.).
(d) Modal Cooperation.—
(1) In general.— A cooperating authority shall provide modal expertise to the lead authority on such aspects of the multimodal project in which the cooperating authority has expertise.
(2) Use of categorical exclusion.— In a case described in paragraph (1), the 1 or more categorical exclusions of a cooperating authority may be applied by the lead authority once the cooperating authority reviews the project on behalf of the lead authority and determines the project satisfies the conditions for a categorical exclusion under the implementing regulations or procedures of the cooperating authority under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.) and this section.


(Pub. L. 97–449, § 1(b),Jan. 12, 1983, 96 Stat. 2419; Pub. L. 112–141, div. A, title I, § 1314(a),July 6, 2012, 126 Stat. 547.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised Section Source (U.S. Code) Source (Statutes at Large)
304(a) 49:1653(g) (less 3d sentence). Oct. 15, 1966, Pub. L. 89–670, § 4(g), 80 Stat. 934.
304(b) 49:1653(g) (3d sentence).

In subsection (a), the text of 49:1653(g) (last sentence) is omitted as executed.
In subsection (a)(4), the word “ensure” is substituted for “assure” as being more precise. The words “of the United States Government” are substituted for “Federal”, and the words “United States” are substituted for “national”, for clarity and consistency.
In subsection (b), the words “The Secretaries shall report on April 1 of each year” are substituted for “They shall, within one year after the effective date of the Act, and annually thereafter, report” to omit executed words and to specify the date of April 1 because the President prescribed April 1, 1967, as the effective date of the Department of Transportation Act (Pub. L. 89–670, 80 Stat. 931) by Executive Order No. 11340, March 30, 1967 (32 F.R. 5443). The word “consider” is substituted for “determine” for consistency.
References in Text

The National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, referred to in subsecs. (a)(2)(B)(i), (c)(4)(A), (5)(B), and (d)(2), is Pub. L. 91–190, Jan. 1, 1970, 83 Stat. 852, which is classified generally to chapter 55 (§ 4321 et seq.) of Title 42, The Public Health and Welfare. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 4321 of Title 42 and Tables.

2012–Pub. L. 112–141amended section generally. Prior to amendment, section related to joint activities with the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.
Effective Date of 2012 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 112–141effective Oct. 1, 2012, see section 3(a) ofPub. L. 112–141, set out as an Effective and Termination Dates of 2012 Amendment note under section 101 of Title 23, Highways.

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