Because public involvement in the transportation planning process is important to ensuring that decisions reflect the needs of the entire community, Kern COG actively seeks public opinion on our work programs and project at all stages of the process. Our public participation practices were recently recognized among the best in the nation by the Federal Transit Administration.
Kern COG carries out its transportation and air quality planning responsibilities in a continuing, cooperative and comprehensive manner in conformance with federal and state law that determine how Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) provide for early consultation and public participation.
In 2003, the Kern COG Board of Directors began broadcasting its meetings countywide through Kern Government Television (KGOV). During their meetings, the Board of Directors provides opportunities for comments from the public as well as from each of the member jurisdiction representatives.
Throughout the year, agency staff provide booths at community events to answer questions and solicit comments about the region’s transportation network. Since 2007, Kern COG has conducted a statistically valid 1200 person Quality of Life Community Survey. The survey is designed to gauge residents’ overall opinion of current and future quality of life in their city or town; survey the importance of specific issues related to future quality of life in the county; understand the daily commute behavior of the average resident; determine housing preferences; and identify any differences in opinion due to demographic and/or behavioral characteristics.
One of the purposes of the Kern COG web site is to involve the public in the decision-making process in Kern County. The site offers the user an opportunity to access information that is needed to make informed decisions and to establish a forum for the expression of the users’ thoughts on the issues.
The best way to have a voice in the process is through participating. Our publications, journals, news releases and workshop announcements list many opportunities to become involved, along with contact names of key staff members.