The Official Website of The Massachusetts Department of Transportation

MassDOT News

Home > Information Center > Weekly Newsletters > MassDOT News 02/17/2017
Governor Charlie Baker

MassDOT February
Board Meeting

March 13, 2017
Transportation Building
10 Park Plaza
Second Floor Board Room
Boston, MA 02150
Full Meeting Schedule

On the MassDOT Blog

MassDOT Innovation & Tech Transfer Exchange: March 7-8
innovation conference

You are invited to share and learn the newest ideas in transportation technology by attending MassDOT’s Innovation & Tech Transfer Exchange for 2017, scheduled for March 7 & 8, at the DCU Center in Worcester.

Are you wondering how to improve both the efficiency and effectiveness of your operations? Are you looking for the latest technology or equipment for your organization? Take the leap forward by discovering 21st century innovations and technologies at the annual Innovation and Tech Transfer Exchange.

There will be more than 30 breakout sessions, where you will have the opportunity to discuss with your peers the advantages and challenges associated with the methods and technologies being presented.

The event is open to all transportation professionals including MassDOT, municipalities, consultants, contractors, vendors and manufacturers.

To learn more, register to attend, or become an exhibitor or sponsor, visit the Innovation & Tech Transfer Exchange website.

Social Media

Follow Us On...


February 17, 2017

Governor Baker Seeks $200 Million in Chapter 90 Local Transportation Funds

MassDOT logo

The Baker-Polito Administration is filing "An Act Financing Improvements to Municipal Roads and Bridges," which requests $200 million in Chapter 90 funds for local transportation infrastructure projects across Massachusetts.

"We are proud to once again file for $200 million for Chapter 90 funds for cities and towns as we approach the road construction season," said Governor Charlie Baker. "This essential and flexible funding allows our municipalities to make infrastructure upgrades that promote reliability and public safety on roads and bridges, as well as economic development and job creation, and we hope for swift action by the legislature."

Through the Chapter 90 program, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) reimburses cities and towns for costs incurred for eligible transportation projects. Funding is awarded by municipality, and is predetermined by a formula that includes factors such as population, road miles, and employment. This is the third year that the Baker-Polito Administration has filed for $200 million for Chapter 90 funds. In total, since taking office in 2015, the Baker-Polito Administration has released $500 million in Chapter 90 infrastructure funds.

"Our administration has prioritized strengthening the state's relationship with the Commonwealth's cities and towns, and Chapter 90 funding is an important resource in that partnership," said Lieutenant Governor Polito. "In addition to unrestricted local aid and Chapter 70 education monies, these infrastructure funds are yet one more tool for local leaders to apply to their specific needs and improve their communities."

The legislation includes a technical change to allow municipalities to more easily use Chapter 90 funds upon approval of the grant by MassDOT, removing an existing requirement that an appropriation be made by the local legislative body.

"Prioritizing aid for our cities and towns has always been at the forefront during our budget planning process, and the administration has continued this commitment this year," said Administration and Finance Secretary Lepore. "Local aid, including Chapter 90 funding, is key to ensuring all communities across Massachusetts thrive."

"We are proud to work closely with cities and towns to improve transportation infrastructure," said Transportation Secretary and CEO Stephanie Pollack. "Chapter 90 funding allows municipal leaders who best know the needs of their communities to make crucial capital improvements that keep the Commonwealth moving forward."

In addition to the Chapter 90 funding, the legislation also includes $30 million for a mobility assistance program through which MassDOT can purchase accessible vehicles on behalf of municipal transit agencies, local councils on aging, and private non-profits to provide transportation services to seniors and individuals with disabilities. The bill also provides $70 million for upgrades to the Registry of Motor Vehicles' core information technology system, ATLAS.

In one of his first official acts after taking office in 2015, Governor Baker directed MassDOT to release $100 million in Chapter 90 funds that had been promised the previous year, fulfilling a commitment made to cities and towns. In total, the Baker-Polito Administration has released $500 million in Chapter 90 infrastructure funds, and if approved by the legislature, today's request would bring that total to $700 million.

Learn more about the Chapter 90 Program.

Governor Baker Announces Launch of Search for Permanent MBTA General Manager

MBTA logo

Governor Charlie Baker today announced that MassDOT Secretary Stephanie Pollack is launching the search for a permanent CEO and General Manager for the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA).

Governor Baker also recommended in his address before the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce, that the MBTA's Fiscal and Management Control Board (FMCB) exercise the two-year extension of its governance of the MBTA, as permitted by statute. Chief Administrator Brian Shortsleeve will continue to serve as Acting General Manager in the interim and will sit on the search panel.

"The MBTA is showing real progress in its turnaround, from vastly improved winter operations to cutting its operating deficit by more than half, but more work is needed to deliver better and more efficient results to riders and taxpayers," said Governor Baker. "As the MBTA enters this next phase, the time is right for a transformative and permanent General Manager with a strong business background and experience in delivering major capital programming and providing direct service to customers. The unrelenting dedication and talent provided by Secretary Pollack, Brian Shortsleeve and Jeff Gonneville, has steered the MBTA in a better direction, and we look forward to their steady leadership as the search for a turnaround CEO proceeds. The Fiscal and Management Control Board is playing a critical role in reforming the MBTA and we welcome their request to extend their governance to continue the MBTA's turnaround."

Secretary Pollack, who by statute is charged with hiring the MBTA's General Manager, has created a GM Search Advisory Panel, and is in the process of securing an executive search firm to identify a CEO-style GM whose primary focus will be to continue the work of changing the MBTA's culture to focus on performance, capital investment and improved customer service. The search process will be coordinated closely with members of the FMCB, and board member Steve Poftak will serve on the search panel.

"The MBTA now has the momentum to implement changes which will give customers the service they need and deserve and to rebuild its aging infrastructure," said Secretary of Transportation Stephanie Pollack. "A new General Manager and the continued partnership of the Fiscal and Management Control Board will create the stability necessary for the MBTA to complete its transformation into the high performing, customer-focused transit agency to better serve the Commonwealth of Massachusetts."

Chief Administrator Brian Shortsleeve, who assumed the dual role of Acting General Manager in July 2016, and MBTA Chief Operating Officer Jeff Gonneville, will continue their current leadership positions at the MBTA, focusing respectively on the MBTA's fiscal sustainability and day-to-day operations, and serving on the search panel. Shortsleeve has served in his dual roles since July, 2016, when he assumed the role of Acting General Manager.

"I look forward to assisting in the search for a permanent General Manager who will continue the progress we have made in delivering better service for our riders," said Acting General Manager and Chief Administrator Brian Shortsleeve," and focusing full time on the MBTA's long term fiscal sustainability for taxpayers."

By statute, the FMCB sunsets at the end of June, 2018, with the option for the board to exercise a single, two-year extension through June, 2020. Extending the existing governance model for two years will ensure a longer-term structure is in place for General Manager candidates to consider while the search is underway and after their selection.

MassRMV, AAA NE Announce License, Registration Services in Waltham

New Junior Operator License

The Registry of Motor Vehicles and AAA Northeast this week announced license and registration services will now be offered to AAA members at the AAA branch in Waltham.

AAA Northeast already offers RMV services at branches in Burlington, Fairhaven, Framingham, Franklin, Newburyport, Newton, Peabody, Quincy, Raynham, Rockland, Saugus, Somerset, South Attleboro, South Dennis, Westwood, and Worcester.

AAA Pioneer Valley offers services in Hadley, Springfield, and West Springfield. Learn more at

Toll Plaza Demolition, Reconstruction Public Meeting in Lenox

aerial of toll plaza demolishing site

MassDOT has rescheduled the public meeting in Lenox to update the public on the status of the implementation of All Electronic Tolling and the progress of demolishing existing toll plaza infrastructure and reconstructing the roadway.

The Toll Plaza Demolition and Road Reconstruction Meeting will be held February 23, 6:30 p.m., District 1 Highway Office, 270 Main Street.

Representatives of MassDOT will discuss the construction progress in 23 work zones, timeline for completion, what to expect as the project moves into the spring and summer months and other issues.

These public meetings will be to receive feedback from users of I-90, (the Massachusetts Turnpike), and neighboring communities and to provide interchange specific information about what the traveling public can expect during 2017.

Translation Disabled  | Translation Support