Title 23

SECTION 773.117

773.117 Termination.

§ 773.117 Termination.

(a) Termination by the Operating Administration. An Operating Administration(s) that approved the State's participation in the Program may terminate the State's participation if the Operating Administration(s) determines that the State is not adequately carrying out the responsibilities assigned to the State. Examples of situations where such a finding may be made include: persistent neglect of, or noncompliance with, any Federal laws, regulations, and policies; failure to address deficiencies identified during the audit or monitoring process; failure to secure or maintain adequate personnel and/or financial resources to carry out the responsibilities assumed; intentional noncompliance with the terms of the MOU(s); and persistent failure to adequately consult, coordinate, and/or take into account the concerns of other Operating Administrations, when applicable, and appropriate Federal, State, tribal, and local agencies with oversight, consulting, or coordination responsibilities under Federal environmental laws and regulations.

(1) The Operating Administration(s) may rely on the auditing and monitoring reports as sources for a finding that the State is not adequately carrying out its responsibilities. The Operating Administration(s) may also rely on information on noncompliance obtained outside the auditing and monitoring process.

(2) The Operating Administration(s) may not terminate a State's participation without providing the State with notification of the noncompliance issue that could give rise to the termination, and without affording the State an opportunity to take corrective action to address the noncompliance issue. The Operating Administration(s) must provide the State a period of no less than 120 days to take corrective actions. The Operating Administration(s) is responsible for making the final decision on whether the corrective action is satisfactory.

(3) On the request of the Governor of the State (or in the case of the District of Columbia, the Mayor), the Operating Administration(s) shall provide a detailed description of each responsibility in need of corrective action regarding an inadequacy identified by the Operating Administration(s).

(b) Termination by the State. The State may terminate its participation at any time by notifying the Secretary no later than 90 days prior to the proposed termination date. The notice must include a draft transition plan detailing how the State will transfer the projects and responsibilities to the appropriate Operating Administration(s). Termination will not take effect until the State and the Operating Administration(s) agree, and the Operating Administration(s) approve a final transition plan. Transition plans must include:

(1) A list of projects and their status in the environmental review process that the State will return to the Operating Administration(s);

(2) A process for transferring files on pending projects;

(3) A process for notifying the public that the State will terminate its participation in the Program and a projected date upon which this termination will take effect;

(4) Points of contacts for pending projects; and

(5) Any other information required by the Operating Administration(s) to ensure the smooth transition of environmental review responsibilities and prevent disruption in the environmental reviews of projects to the maximum extent possible.

(c) Termination by mutual agreement. The State and the Operating Administration(s) may agree to terminate assignment on a specific date before the expiration of the MOU. Termination will not take effect until the State and the Operating Administration(s) agree, and the Operating Administration(s) approve a final transition plan. Transition plans must include the information outlined in paragraphs (b)(1)-(5) of this section.

(d) Effect of termination of highway responsibilities. Termination of the assignment of the Secretary's environmental review responsibilities with respect to highway projects will result in the termination of assignment of environmental responsibilities for railroad, public transportation, and multimodal projects.

[79 FR 55398, Sept. 16, 2014, as amended at 85 FR 84226, Dec. 28, 2020]