MISA Motorist Information Service Association

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MISA Motorist Information Service Association

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1. MISA Motorist Information Service Association Ernest Huckaby

2. MISA HISTORY Founded in 1988 Traffic Engineers Highway Hospitality Industry First conference – Portland, Oregon Main Topic – Rapid Growth of signing Logo Signing TODS Signing In 1988 a group of state traffic engineers and members of the hospitality met in Portland, Oregon to talk about the rapid growth of logo and Tourist Oriented Directional signing in the United States. Some states came because their legislatures were mandating these signs. Other states came to offer suggestions about implementing and managing these programs. Some companies came because they were prepared to assist states in managing programs through private contract. The result of this meeting was the formation of the Motorists Information Services Association, known as MISA. A board was elected, by-laws written and the next conference was held in Oklahoma City. Meetings have been held annually across the United States since that time. In 1988 a group of state traffic engineers and members of the hospitality met in Portland, Oregon to talk about the rapid growth of logo and Tourist Oriented Directional signing in the United States. Some states came because their legislatures were mandating these signs. Other states came to offer suggestions about implementing and managing these programs. Some companies came because they were prepared to assist states in managing programs through private contract. The result of this meeting was the formation of the Motorists Information Services Association, known as MISA. A board was elected, by-laws written and the next conference was held in Oklahoma City. Meetings have been held annually across the United States since that time.

3. MISA The place to build your professional network in the travel information industry.

4. MISA Mission The scope of the association is to further the study and development of operations, practices, and programs that address issues of motorists information systems and services. Motorist information services shall include programs relating to right of way signing for motorists related businesses, rest area services, highway beautification, advisory radio systems, and other related programs. The objectives of MISA shall be to: Provide a forum for free and open discussion of developments in motorists information and services systems. Present to appropriate organizations, groups, or individuals, a unified voice on those matters involving the regulation or limitations of motorists information and services systems. Provide communication and services, such as a quarterly newsletter, to all members that informs, educates, and provides a forum for discussion of trends and issues regarding motorists information and services. Provide a unified response to the National Committee on Uniform Traffic Control Devices on issues affecting trends within the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) and other policy manuals that affect motorist information and services. Promote and encourage consistency of program development, including standardization of program specifications and procedures. Study, evaluate, and recommend innovative concepts to further enhance the provisions of motorists information and services systems. Promote information networking to members through annual meetings, training seminars, and published material. Promote programs to inform the motoring public as to the benefits of such programs and encourage the use of the same to promote safe and efficient travel along the public highways. Perform such duties that will continue to enhance the programs provided in the area of motorists information and services. MISA Mission The scope of the association is to further the study and development of operations, practices, and programs that address issues of motorists information systems and services. Motorist information services shall include programs relating to right of way signing for motorists related businesses, rest area services, highway beautification, advisory radio systems, and other related programs. The objectives of MISA shall be to: Provide a forum for free and open discussion of developments in motorists information and services systems. Present to appropriate organizations, groups, or individuals, a unified voice on those matters involving the regulation or limitations of motorists information and services systems. Provide communication and services, such as a quarterly newsletter, to all members that informs, educates, and provides a forum for discussion of trends and issues regarding motorists information and services. Provide a unified response to the National Committee on Uniform Traffic Control Devices on issues affecting trends within the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) and other policy manuals that affect motorist information and services. Promote and encourage consistency of program development, including standardization of program specifications and procedures. Study, evaluate, and recommend innovative concepts to further enhance the provisions of motorists information and services systems. Promote information networking to members through annual meetings, training seminars, and published material. Promote programs to inform the motoring public as to the benefits of such programs and encourage the use of the same to promote safe and efficient travel along the public highways. Perform such duties that will continue to enhance the programs provided in the area of motorists information and services.

5. EARLY MISA STUDIES Comprehensive Analysis of TODS State Sign Criteria Historical Marker program – Heritage Tourism programs Tourist Attractions Signage MISA accomplished studies early on that assisted states in program development and implementation. Such studies included a comprehensive analysis of the Tourist Oriented Directional Sign program, allowing states to determine whether these signs would be beneficial for their state. MISA also compiled a study of how states were setting sign criteria to ascertain the level of consistency across the United States. Another study gave a management analysis of the Historical Marker program, allowing states to evaluate their own implementation procedures of these Heritage Tourism programs MISA accomplished studies early on that assisted states in program development and implementation. Such studies included a comprehensive analysis of the Tourist Oriented Directional Sign program, allowing states to determine whether these signs would be beneficial for their state. MISA also compiled a study of how states were setting sign criteria to ascertain the level of consistency across the United States. Another study gave a management analysis of the Historical Marker program, allowing states to evaluate their own implementation procedures of these Heritage Tourism programs

6. GROWTH OF MISA Canadian participation FHWA participation/update State tourism offices Signing and Rest Areas Canada became an active participant in MISA, and dialogue between Canadians and state departments provide a consistent message to the motorist who cross over borders to the North. A representative from the Federal Highway Administration began attending national conferences to update members on changes within the MUTCD, and to advise the members of the federal perspective on the growing areas of service signing. As the association reached out to the industry, it caught the attention of the state tourism offices. They brought their own program needs to the table in terms of signing and rest area services. Soon those in charge of enticing visitors to the state began to work alongside the traffic and other DOT officials in that state to provide rest areas that were welcoming and safe. Canada became an active participant in MISA, and dialogue between Canadians and state departments provide a consistent message to the motorist who cross over borders to the North. A representative from the Federal Highway Administration began attending national conferences to update members on changes within the MUTCD, and to advise the members of the federal perspective on the growing areas of service signing. As the association reached out to the industry, it caught the attention of the state tourism offices. They brought their own program needs to the table in terms of signing and rest area services. Soon those in charge of enticing visitors to the state began to work alongside the traffic and other DOT officials in that state to provide rest areas that were welcoming and safe.

7. MISA = PARTNERSHIPS Tourism Federal/State signing standards and regulations DOT Officials Other DOT Officials Private Industry The benefits of this organization are measurable in the partnerships: Tourism officials began to understand the federal and state standards that regulated sign programs so that dialogue could take place on a level that kept program integrity. DOT officials found new ideas from other state DOT officials to help them operate their own programs more effectively. Last year in Kentucky, a woman from the Mississippi state tourism office was delighted to meet the right Mississippi DOT person who she could work with on mutual projects. The benefits of this organization are measurable in the partnerships: Tourism officials began to understand the federal and state standards that regulated sign programs so that dialogue could take place on a level that kept program integrity. DOT officials found new ideas from other state DOT officials to help them operate their own programs more effectively. Last year in Kentucky, a woman from the Mississippi state tourism office was delighted to meet the right Mississippi DOT person who she could work with on mutual projects.

9. MISA 2006 CONFERENCE Oasis Program FHWA Experimental Programs Kentucky LOGO and Tourism Signing AASHTO SCOTE and NCUTCD Funding/Planning for Rest Areas and Visitor Centers State DOTs considering new programs find the right sources at MISA conferences and over the MISA website to gather the information they need. The 2006 MISA conference provided such topics as the Oasis program, how to do experimental programs through the Federal Highway Administration, current topics being discussed through the National Committee on Uniform Traffic Control Devices, the funding and planning for rest area visitor centers. Evaluations of the 2006 conference validated MISA’s worth to its members. High marks came for the conference content and camaraderie. MISA was asked to meet with the Federal Highway Administration to advise on the creation of the Oasis program, and continues to be asked to respond when new programs come through federal legislation. MISA members attend national committees so that they can share the latest concepts and possible changes in rule making with other members. State DOTs considering new programs find the right sources at MISA conferences and over the MISA website to gather the information they need. The 2006 MISA conference provided such topics as the Oasis program, how to do experimental programs through the Federal Highway Administration, current topics being discussed through the National Committee on Uniform Traffic Control Devices, the funding and planning for rest area visitor centers. Evaluations of the 2006 conference validated MISA’s worth to its members. High marks came for the conference content and camaraderie. MISA was asked to meet with the Federal Highway Administration to advise on the creation of the Oasis program, and continues to be asked to respond when new programs come through federal legislation. MISA members attend national committees so that they can share the latest concepts and possible changes in rule making with other members.

10. MISA ~ ORGANIC As national trends change – MISA focus changes accordingly Each member brings issues that enhances professional knowledge Opportunities for members is boundless Every member’s skills and expertise are utilized The beauty of MISA is that it is organic. National trends change and the MISA focus changes accordingly. Each member brings a topic that enhances the professional knowledge of another. The opportunities for members are boundless, whether it is serving on the MISA board or helping set conference agendas – every member’s skills and expertise are utilized.The beauty of MISA is that it is organic. National trends change and the MISA focus changes accordingly. Each member brings a topic that enhances the professional knowledge of another. The opportunities for members are boundless, whether it is serving on the MISA board or helping set conference agendas – every member’s skills and expertise are utilized.

11. MISA CONFERENCES Year Location Portland, OR Okalahoma City, OK Phoenix, AZ New Orleans, LA Nashville, TN Hartford, CT Arlington, TX Richmond, VA Quebec City, QC Kansas City, KS Biloxi, MS SCOTE members that have attended MISA meetings Tom Hicks, MD made presentation in 1995 Duane Thomas, KY, made presentation in 2006 Rick Wertz SC Ed Fisher OR Wes  Dean   MS Mike  Manthey   AZ Mark Alexander PA (past MISA President and Board member) SCOTE members that have attended MISA meetings Tom Hicks, MD made presentation in 1995 Duane Thomas, KY, made presentation in 2006 Rick Wertz SC Ed Fisher OR Wes  Dean   MS Mike  Manthey   AZ Mark Alexander PA (past MISA President and Board member)

12. MISA 2007 CONFERENCE FHWA Rulemaking Traffic Engineering update PennDOT Tourism Area Corridor signing Maryland SHA Jamestown 400th Celebration VA Tourism Bureau Relations between Transportation and Signing Value of Visitor Center Study I invite you to experience MISA for yourself. Membership is affordable. The website is a great communication tool, as are the newsletter we issue quarterly. Our Oregon headquarters can answer any questions you might have. Come see me, I have their number.. I invite you to experience MISA for yourself. Membership is affordable. The website is a great communication tool, as are the newsletter we issue quarterly. Our Oregon headquarters can answer any questions you might have. Come see me, I have their number..

13. MISA WEBSITE http://www.misaonline.org

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