September 2021 – The update of Plan Hillsborough’s 2021 Nondiscrimination and Equity Plan is complete. The Hillsborough County City-County Planning Commission’s (Planning Commission) review and the Transportation Planning Organization’s (TPO) approval mark a major milestone in the agency’s effort to ensure its planning activities are nondiscriminatory and compliant with Federal regulations such as Title VI of the Civil Rights Act (“Title VI”) and the Executive Order on environmental justice.
But the Nondiscrimination and Equity Plan serves a purpose much greater than compliance; The Plan seeks to advance equity in both agency processes and outcomes above and beyond Federal and State requirements.
“We’re placing the Civil Rights Act within its proper historical context in terms of planning investment and decision-making,” Hillsborough TPO Community Planner Joshua Barber said. “We’re not only avoiding discrimination but taking action towards correcting the disproportionately inequitable results of past policies through assessing needs and making targeted investments with our most underserved communities.”
Because the TPO receives federal financial assistance, it must ensure it does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, sex, disability, and other characteristics identified in federal laws and executive orders. The Planning Commission is an indirect beneficiary of federal financial assistance through its Staff Services Agreement with the TPO.
Updates to the 2021 Nondiscrimination and Equity Plan include:
- New maps to identify historically underserved or underrepresented communities
- A public outreach section that evaluates the Plan’s equity needs, outcomes, and outreach effectiveness
- A self-evaluation of how the agency incorporates equity and the principles of Title VI/Environmental Justice.
- A review of historically discriminatory planning processes and planning decisions in Hillsborough County
- Recommendations for advancing equity within Plan Hillsborough activities and programs
To read the Plan along with information about the outreach and research behind it, please visit www.planhillsborough.org/nondiscrim-plan. For inquiries, please contact Joshua Barber at BarberJ@plancom.org or (813) 576-2313.