The West Alabama Rural Planning Organization (RPO) manages the West Alabama Rural Transportation Planning Process. The RPO is composed of three committees. The Policy Committee is the official decision-making body of the process. The Policy Committee is served by two advisory committees: the Technical Coordinating Committee (TCC) and the Citizens Transportation Advisory Committee (CTAC).

Rural Planning Organization (Policy Committee)
The Policy Committee serves as the official decision-making body for the West Alabama Rural Transportation Planning Process. In this capacity the Policy Committee determines the content of all documents and recommendations that are provided to the Alabama Department of Transportation. The Policy Committee’s responsibilities include providing overall guidance to the planning process, review and approval of all process plans and programs, and appointing TCC and CTAC members.

The Policy Committee is composed of nineteen members, fourteen voting and five non-voting. Each county commission in the six rural west Alabama counties has a voting representative on the Policy Committee. In addition, the mayors from each rural county choose a voting representative to serve on the Policy Committee. The ALDOT West Central Region Engineer and the Executive Director of the WARC are the other two voting members. The five non-voting members are Federal Highway Administration Division Administrator, the ALDOT Transportation Planning Engineer, the chairman of the RPO’s TCC, the chairman of the RPO’s CTAC, and the chairman of the Tuscaloosa Area MPO.

 Technical Coordinating Committee

The Technical Coordinating Committee (TCC) provides technical support to the Policy Committee. The TCC reviews RPO documents, studies, reports, plans, and programs and provides the Policy Committee with recommendations concerning these items. The TCC members review the planning process products from a technical perspective making certain that all appropriate concerns are addressed, including local planning issues, engineering details, environmental questions, and future growth, among many others. The TCC also has the ability to make alternative recommendations for any of the products.

The The TCC coordinates the work of the various departments and agencies involved in the transportation planning process. The local governments, the State DOT, and selected other transportation interests are represented on the TCC. The TCC members share information and data that builds and improves the planning processes and products.

Citizens Transportation Advisory Committee
The Citizens Transportation Advisory Committee (CTAC) is made up of twenty-four citizens from the West Alabama area. The county commissions’ and the mayors’ representatives on the Policy Committee each appoint two members to the CTAC. Each county has four representatives on the CTAC.

The CTAC was established to provide active public participation in the transportation planning process. The CTAC provides the RPO with a standing committee of citizens who have a good knowledge of the planning process and can convey public concerns related to transportation in a structured fashion. The CTAC reviews RPO documents, studies, reports, plans, and programs and provides the Policy Committee with recommendations concerning these items. The CTAC also informs the Policy Committee of public concerns related to transportation projects and issues.

 The CTAC is scheduled to meet four times a year. The full CTAC meets once a year, usually in the first quarter of the fiscal year. For the other three meetings the CTAC holds six subcommittee meetings in each of the rural counties. Each subcommittee is composed of the four representatives from the respective county. This method of meeting provides local residents a better opportunity to participate in the planning process.

The CTAC is just one of the strategies included in the public involvement plan adopted by the RPO. The plan describes the RPO’s public participation goals and lists strategies to encourage public participation in the transportation planning process. The RPO staff reviews participation performance measures annually in order to judge the effectiveness of the plan.