Salem-Keizer Area Transportation Study (SKATS) is the designated Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for the Salem-Keizer area. A MPO is a federally mandated body for any urban area over 50,000 in population. The SKATS MPO is directed by a Policy Committee composed of elected representatives from the cities of Keizer, Salem and Turner, Marion and Polk Counties, the Salem Area Mass Transit District, the Salem-Keizer School District and a manager from the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) Region 2 office. MWVCOG staff provide the day-to-day staff work for SKATS.
SKATS focuses on transportation planning activities, plans, and studies within the Salem-Keizer urban area for transportation facilities of regional significance. The Policy Committee adopts the long-range regional transportation plan and decides how the federal transportation funds available to the urban area will be spent on transportation projects and programs. Assisting in this process is the Technical Advisory Committee made up of staff rom the same jurisdictions as the Policy Committee, as well as from the Oregon Department of Land Conservation and Development, the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality and the Federal Highway Administration.
SKATS does not own, operate or maintain any transportation infrastructure. In addition, SKATS does not have the ability to collect or levy taxes or fees to support any investment in the transportation infrastructure. These duties and responsibilities are left to the members of the SKATS.
As required by federal regulation, SKATS produces three main products that facilitates transportation planning in the area. These are: