In a message to transportation partners, Ray Zhang, Division of Local Assistance Chief, explains the upcoming shutdown of FHWA’s authorization approval and reimbursement system:
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has been working on upgrading its Financial Management Information System (FMIS) for a while to comply with some MAP-21 requirements. The roll out of FMIS upgrade has been postponed several times at the requests of state DOTs, including Caltrans, to allow the state DOTs more time to get their systems ready to work with the upgraded FMIS. To minimize the impact on the states’ ability to authorize federal funded project, the FMIS roll out has been postponed to near the end of federal fiscal year.
The time has finally come for that roll out to take place. On September 26, 2015, FMIS will shut down. This takes place a day after the deadline for all states to obligate their federal funding for federal fiscal year 2014/2015. The new FMIS is scheduled to come back on October 26, 2015.
Here are major impacts this month-long FIMS shut down will have:
* E76 approvals – No E76 approval will take place during this period. Fortunately, we will have processed most, if not all, of the E76s submitted near the end of the federal fiscal year. I expect the impact to project approval to be minimal.
* Local Agency Invoice Payment – **Caltrans will continue to process invoice payments to local agencies**, even though the FMIS shutdown will include the stoppage of reimbursement to Caltrans by FHWA.
I could go on telling you about the upgrade Caltrans is working on our Federal-aid Data System (FADS) to match the changes in FMIS. However, those changes will impact Caltrans internal staff more than the local agencies.
I wanted to get this quick information out as some local agencies have concerns about their invoice payments after hearing from other state DOTs that they would stop paying local agency invoices. Not in California. Your invoice will continue to be paid.