Special July 12 congestion pricing listening session
About the Commission
The Oregon Transportation Commission establishes state transportation policy. The commission also guides the planning, development and management of a statewide integrated transportation network that provides efficient access, is safe, and enhances Oregon’s economy and livability.
The commission meets monthly to oversee Department of Transportation activities relating to
- Public transportation;
- Transportation safety;
- Motor carrier transportation;
- Drivers and motor vehicles.
The governor appoints five commissioners, ensuring that different geographic regions of the state are represented. One member must live east of the Cascade Range; no more than three members can belong to one political party.
How to Interact with the Commission
Public Comment at Commission Meetings
The Commission places great value on information received from the public. If you wish to give testimony on any topic, including items not on the agenda, please sign up on the sheets provided at the meeting. A designated public comment time takes place near the beginning of the meeting. If there is time the Commission typically allows people to provide comment on specific agenda items at the time they are presented. As representatives of a larger constituency, federal, state, local, and tribal elected officials will be called up to testify first.
People wishing to testify or otherwise present information to the Commission are encouraged to:
- Provide written summaries of information to the Commission (10 copies);
- Limit testimony to three (3) minutes, recognizing that substance, not length, determines the value of testimony or written information;
- Endorse rather than repeat testimony of other witnesses; and
- Groups or organizations wishing to testify should designate one spokesperson whenever possible.
Please see Tips for Providing Public Comment for more information on effectively presenting to the Commission.
Reasonable Accommodation of Disabilities
Reasonable accommodation, such as assistive hearing devices, sign language interpreters, and materials in large print or audiotape, will be provided as needed.
An American Sign Language video explains how to request an accommodation or share a comment.
In order to ensure availability, please contact the Commission Assistant at 503.986.3450 or email OTCAdmin@odot.state.or.us at least 72 hours prior to the meeting to make your request. TTY users can reach ODOT by using the Oregon Telecommunications Relay Service. Please dial 711 and ask to be connected to 503.986.3450.
Tips for Providing Public Comment
Giving public testimony can be an exciting and fulfilling experience if you are prepared. Your public comments may influence the Commission's action. It also becomes part of the permanent record and may be used in future research. Below are suggestions to help make your presentation successful.
Know Your Audience
- The members of the Commission are citizens. They care that you have taken time out of your day to come and testify before them.
- Be respectful. Resist the temptation to scold, put down, or insult the decision makers or other witnesses. This tactic may alienate them from your cause.
Know the Issue
Support your personal opinions with facts. Be knowledgeable of the other side of the story. You may be asked to discuss the differences. Draw from your own knowledge and experience.
Be familiar with the Commission and know the location of the building, the meeting room, and the meeting time.
- The agenda is available online and on the handout table in the back of the room.
- You may want to attend a meeting or watch one online before you testify to become familiar with the process and room layout.
- When you arrive at the meeting, sign the public comment registration sheet. The Chair may call elected officials to present first.
- No signs, banners, or placards are allowed unless pre-cleared by the commission assistant.
Presenting Your Testimony
- When you are called to testify, give copies of your testimony to the commission assistant before you begin your presentation.
- Make sure your microphone is on.
- Begin your presentation by addressing the chairperson first, then members of the committee. "Chair___, members of the commission . . ."
- For the record, state your name and the organization or group you represent.
- Do not read your testimony word for word. Prepare an outline and summarize.
- Relax! The members understand that this can be an intimidating experience--they don't expect a perfect presentation.