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Division of Right of Way & Utilities

The Division of Right of Way & Utilities oversees many of the project development processes related to right of way acquisition and utility/rail coordination.  The division is made up of three branches that support right of way functions:

    • Appraisal Branch
    • Acquisition Branch
    • Relocation Branch

These 3 branches work hand in hand with project managers, right-of-way supervisors and right-of-way agents to support the right of way acquisition function.

The Division of Right of Way & Utilities also contains one branch (Utilities and Rail Branch) that works with utility supervisors, utility agents, utility companies and railroad companies to coordinate project involvement with utility and rail facilities.

The division’s oversight responsibilities include:

    • Managing the program for compliance with statutes, regulations, policies, and codes, including the Uniform Act and other standards
    • Advising and supporting district personnel, project managers and consultants
    • Performing Quality Assurance Reviews (QAR) and reports for the Districts as required
    • Compiling annual statistics reports
    • Attend Project Review/Letting Review meetings and advise on right of way status/issues
    • Tracking projects
    • Supporting completion of projects
    • Developing and coordinating and training for stakeholders and subject matter experts
    • Coordinating program development and delivery with other federal and state agencies
    • Keeping the Director of the Division of Right of Way & Utilities and stakeholders apprised of program issues and concerns
    • Evaluating the staffing capability of district right of way sections to ensure that required right-of-way activity complies with the Right of Way Guidance Manual and federal laws and regulations
    • Managing and updating KYTC right of way, utility and railroad policies/manuals as required

1. Appraisal Branch

The Appraisals Branch

KYTC must adhere to state and federal regulations when it acquires property. A key stipulation of these regulations is that landowners are to receive fair market value for their property. The Appraisals Branch administers rules and regulations for determining the value of property KYTC is purchasing. The branch ensures that property owners are treated fairly and offered just compensation for their property.

The Appraisals Branch:

      • Develops policies and procedures for the valuation of properties
      • Reviews and updates Appraisal Manual and other guidelines as required
      • Assigns, reviews, and approves appraisals
      • Develops appraisal staff
      • Prequalifies contract appraisers
      • Develops training on property valuation
      • Provides support for appraisal issues

2. Acquisition Branch

Once a property’s value has been determined, property acquisition moves forward. The Acquisitions Branch administers the acquisition process and ensures KYTC follows all state and federal regulations.

The Acquisitions Branch:

    • Reviews and updates the Right of Way Guidance Manual as required
    • Develops procedures for property acquisition
    • Oversees acquisition procedures by districts and consultants
    • Provides technical assistance on acquisition issues
    • Programs projects for right-of-way activities
    • Coordinates and assists with consultant contracting
    • Reviews payments for property acquisitions
    • Coordinates with the Office of Legal Services and reviews condemnation documentation
    • Maintains a file system of project plans and folders for all active projects
    • Coordinates title requests

    3. Relocation Branch

    The Relocation Branch oversees and administers the relocation of people, families, and business displaced by highway projects. Displaced people may be eligible for relocation assistance, advisory services, and payments. Relocation Assistance personnel work with displacees to determine their specific needs and identify payments they may be eligible for. Branch staff also manage property management and excess/surplus property functions.

    Property management is required on projects when the Cabinet acquires parcels with improvements. Property management personnel handle the maintenance and removal of improvements until project letting.

    Excess property is property KYTC originally acquired for a transportation project or other operational need such as a maintenance facility. The property becomes surplus when the Cabinet determines it is no longer necessary for a transportation project or other operational need.

    The Relocation Branch:

      • Develops procedures for relocating displaced people, families, and businesses
      • Reviews and updates the Relocation Manual as required
      • Oversees property management for parcels with improvements
      • Develops procedures and manages the process for relocating cemeteries
      • Manages the excess/surplus property function
      • Coordinates with the Division of Environmental Analysis on inspecting acquired properties for environmental issues
      • Develops training for all programs the branch is responsible for

    4. Utilities and Rail Branch

      This branch provides functions relative to utility company project involvement, railroad company project involvement and railroad-highway project development.  The utilities function works with the District Utilities Sections, utility companies and railroad companies to administer the utilities and railroad coordination functions. Area coordinators in the Utilities and Rails Branch manage and review utility deliverables for projects and assist District staff with executing projects by providing technical support, and policy interpretation.

      Rail coordinators perform similar functions as applicable to railroad companies.  They also identify and execute projects focused on railroad–highway crossing improvements.

      Primary responsibilities associated with the utility function:


      • Work with district Utility Section Supervisors, utility agents and utility companies to facilitate utility coordination and/or relocation
      • Provide support and training for utility coordination/relocation
      • Review utility relocation plans, estimates, proposals, and agreements
      • Review utility invoices and change orders
      • Manage statewide contracts for utility coordination
      • Review and coordinate utility agreements
      • Reviews and updates the Guidance Manual as required
      Utilities and Rail Branch

      Staff responsible for the rail function coordinate project activities that involve railroad companies and ensure compliance with the FHWA Railway-Highway Crossings Program and the US Department of Transportation (DOT) National Highway-Rail Crossing Inventory Program.

       Primary responsibilities associated with the rail function:

        • Work with railroad companies and project managers to facilitate railroad coordination and flagging services for impacted KYTC projects
        • Work with railroad companies and district staff to identify, program, develop and deliver railroad-highway crossing projects designed for safety or functionality improvement
        • Provide support and training for railroad coordination
        • Review plans, proposals, and agreements
        • Review railroad invoices and change orders
        • Manage statewide contracts for utility coordination
        • Review and coordinate railroad agreements

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