GENESEE TRANSPORTATION COUNCIL
QUARTERLY BOARD MEETING
June 18, 2009
GTC BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT
Jerry Davis, Genesee/Finger Lakes Regional Planning Council
Mary Pat Hancock, Genesee County (GTC Vice Chairperson)
Paul E. Haney, Rochester At-Large
James Hoffman, Wayne County
Dan Hogan, Monroe County At-Large
Wayne Zyra, Monroe County
ALTERNATE REPRESENTATIVES PRESENT
Mark Aesch, Roch. Gen. Regional Trans. Authority, representing John G. Doyle, Jr.
Richard Beers Jr., Federal Highway Administration, representing Jeff Kolb
Angela Ellis, Livingston County, representing James Merrick
E. Joseph Gozelski, Wyoming County, representing A. Douglas Berwanger
Tom Goodwin, Monroe County Planning Board, representing Linda A. Faubel
Dorothy Huber, Ontario County, representing Theodore Fafinski
Scott Leathersich, Monroe County At-Large, representing Edward Marianetti
Edward G. Muszynski, Empire State Development Corporation, representing Marisa Lago
Kevin OBuckley, NYS Department of Transportation (NYSDOT), representing Stanley Gee
Terrence J. Rice, Monroe County, representing Maggie Brooks
William Sullivan, Rochester City Council, representing Gladys Santiago
Douglas J. Tokarczyk, NYS Thruway Authority, representing Michael Fleischer
GTC BOARD MEMBERS ABSENT AND UNREPRESENTED
Robert Duffy, City of Rochester
Pete Grannis, NYS Department of Environmental Conservation
Brigid Hynes-Cherin, Federal Transit Administration
Chuck Lafler, Seneca County
Robert Multer, Yates County
Henry Smith, Jr., Orleans County
Steve Urlass, Federal Aviation Administration
David L. Watson, Rochester City Planning Commission
George Wiedemer, Monroe County Supervisors Association
OTHERS IN ATTENDANCE
Dan Hallowell, NYSDOT Region 4
Paul Holahan, City of Rochester
Kristen Mark Hughes, Ontario County
Gary Kent, Orleans County Legislature
Richard Perrin, GTC staff
Jody Pollot, GTC staff
Robert Slaver Jr., NYSDOT Region 4
James Stack, GTC staff
Robert Traver, NYSDOT Region 4
Victor Waldron, Federal Transit Administration
Ed Welsh, NYSDOT Region 4
1. Call to Order and Roll Call
Vice Chairperson Hancock called the meeting to order at 8:33 a.m.
James Stack, GTC staff, called the roll; a quorum was present.
2. Public Forum
No one from the public spoke during the Public Forum.
3. Approval of Minutes
Dan Hogan moved for approval of the minutes from the March 12, 2009 GTC Quarterly Board meeting; Dorothy Huber seconded the motion. The minutes were approved as submitted.
4. Communications and Announcements
Richard Perrin announced that:
By his election as Chairman of the Genesee/Finger Lakes Regional Planning Council, Town of Covington Supervisor Jerry Davis is now a Member of the Genesee Transportation Council;
Town of Penfield Supervisor George Wiedemer, President of the Monroe County Supervisors Association, has designated Town of Chili Supervisor David Dunning as the Associations alternate to the Genesee Transportation Council;
By his appointment as Acting Commissioner of the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT), Stanley Gee is now a Member of the Genesee Transportation Council;
Kevin OBuckley announced that he is retiring this month and introduced Robert Traver, who has been appointed Acting Regional Director for NYSDOT Region 4.
5. Reports and Action on Old Business
a. Presentation on FHWA/FTA Joint Certification Review
Richard Perrin introduced Victor Waldron of the Federal Transit Administration Region II and Richard Beers of the Federal Highway Administration New York Division who served as the leads for their respective agencies in conducting the FHWA/FTA Joint Certification Review of the metropolitan planning process in the Genesee-Finger Lakes Region.
Victor provided an overview of the certification process and reviewed the findings. He noted that while the report identifies three corrective actions, these are not deficiencies in the metropolitan planning process. He added that GTC staff have acknowledged that they have begun addressing two of the three corrective actions as part of the development of the relevant federally-required documents.
Paul Haney asked how the metropolitan planning process conducted by GTC compares to other Metropolitan Planning Organizations. Dick Beers responded that he would place GTC above average. Victor Waldron responded that it is equally important that the Board is satisfied with the performance of GTC staff. Victor added that the certification review focuses on various requirements but they were pleased to hear about activities beyond the federal requirements that are being undertaken by or on behalf of GTC.
Dick Beers noted that GTC staff began addressing the corrective actions prior to the completion of the certification report.
b. Planning Committee Report Kristen Mark Hughes, Chairman
Kristen Mark Hughes provided the following report:
The Planning Committee met April 12 and May 14 and recommends that the GTC Board:
Adopt an agreement identifying responsibilities for carrying out the metropolitan transportation planning process in the Genesee-Finger Lakes Region of New York State;
Amend the FY 2009-2010 Unified Planning Work Program (UPWP) budget to reflect the contribution of actual FY 2008-2009 rollover amounts;
Amend the FY 2009-2010 UPWP by adding Task 3105 SAFETEA-LU Succession Program;
Accept the submissions of a summary memorandum and a report as evidence of completion of two Unified Planning Work Program Tasks;
Adopt nineteen amendments to the 2007-2012 Transportation Improvement Program as requested by Monroe County, NYSDOT, the City of Rochester, and the Rochester Genesee Regional Transportation Authority (RGRTA);
Certify that the selection of projects to benefit from funding provided via The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) wholly incorporates the prioritization criteria of said legislation; and
Amend the prioritized list of illustrative projects that will benefit from ARRA should additional funding from said legislation become available to the Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) area.
Additionally, the Planning Committee took the following actions:
Classified FY 2009-2010 UPWP tasks in accordance with the GTC Public Participation Plan;
Approved Administrative Modifications to the 2007-2012 TIP by modifying the names of select projects that will benefit from funding provided via ARRA to more accurately describe said projects;
Endorsed the Regional Trails Initiative Steering Committee project recommendations for FY 2008-2009 Priority Trails Advancement Funding;
Approved scopes of work for five Unified Planning Work Program tasks to be conducted by the City of Geneva, the City of Rochester, Monroe County, the Genesee/Finger Lakes Regional Planning Council, and Wyoming County, respectively.
c. GTC Staff Report Richard Perrin, Executive Director
Richard Perrin provided the following report:
GTC staff is continuing to advance a number of initiatives including the following two initiatives:
The next Long Range Transportation Plan (LRTP) is due in June 2011 and GTC staff have been working on the LRTP over the past year. Key changes to the approach to the next LRTP include:
Greater incorporation of objectives-driven performance measures for transportation management and operations activities;
Scenario planning to demonstrate what how development scenarios may impact the transportation system;
Enhanced public outreach techniques like online surveys, more participatory outreach to the public, and using social networking sites;
Convening the LRTP Development Committee for a summer meeting and creating sub-committees focused on particular topics; and
Beginning public involvement this Fall.
GTC will need to address the direction and associated implementation of the next federal surface transportation authorization the successor to the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU). SAFETEA-LU expires on September 30, 2009 and a new authorization is not likely to occur by October 1, 2009.
On June 17, the Obama Administration proposed an 18-month extension of SAFETEA-LU. They also announced a need to fix the Highway Trust Fund, which will be insolvent in August, in order to pay for the extension of SAFETEA-LU.
The House Transportation & Infrastructure (T&I) Committee was scheduled to release a proposed outline for the successor to SAFETEA-LU on June 18. The next authorization will likely include increased funding in fewer but more flexible federal aid programs as well as increased accountability through performance measurement and reporting based on national goals and objectives.
A major difficulty is how to pay for the next authorization. The federal gas tax rate has not been raised since 1993 but the purchasing power has decreased approximately 70 percent in that time. A gas tax increase is not politically palatable right now. The T&I Committee is formulating ideas on setting a revenue source and indexing it to account for inflation.
1. 2011-2014 TIP Development
Richard Perrin discussed the development of the 2011-2014 TIP. The goal is to adopt the new TIP in March 2010 to align with the NYSDOT schedule to update the statewide program. At this time, there is still fiscal uncertainty with regard to the federal surface transportation program but the TIP update is progressing to ensure that needed projects can be advanced.
GTC and NYSDOT Region 4 will be issuing a targeted Call for Projects on June 19, 2009. The Call for Projects will solicit new bridge and air quality improvement projects. Selected agencies will receive a solicitation for public transportation, Interstate maintenance, and National Highway System projects. The Call for Projects package will include a TIP Guidebook and Project Application Form. A TIP applicant workshop will be conducted July 8 for potential project sponsors. Applications will be due July 24. GTC and NYSDOT Region 4 staffs will evaluate project proposals and work with the TIP Development Committee to develop a fiscally constrained draft program in the Fall. Public involvement will occur in the Winter.
Richard noted that the targeted solicitation is part of the process to right the ship that was started last Fall. The Call for Projects solicits project types for which we expect to have available funding.
Vice Chairperson Hancock stressed the importance of infrastructure and the need to advance activities even in times of uncertainty.
d. Old Business
1. Economic Stimulus Project Status
Dan Hallowell discussed the current status of ARRA-funded projects. The original goal was to have 100 percent of the projects in the region obligated by this meeting. The Governor is required to certify each project before ARRA funds can be obligated. This certification process can be onerous and has delayed the obligation of some projects.
To date, $37 million worth of projects have had contracts let, an additional $25 million worth of projects have received Plans, Specifications & Estimates (PS&E or bid package) approval, and another $11 million worth of projects still need to be submitted to NYSDOT Region 4. NYSDOT has let contracts on 34 projects and local sponsors have let contracts on two projects. Nine projects have yet to be submitted for approval.
Dan stressed the importance of continuing to progress the core program of projects (i.e., formula/non-ARRA-funded) to demonstrate maintenance of effort in the region. Dan added that this region has the highest percentage of projects that are new to the statewide program.
Paul Holahan stated the he recently heard that delays in certification by the Governor have threatened to delay projects to the point where they will miss the current construction season. Dan Hallowell responded that the Governors office has established a three-week cycle for issuing new certifications for transportation projects to receive ARRA funding. This has helped to ease the backlog of projects and the delays in receiving certification are not as long as they were earlier in the process. However, projects that have not been submitted for certification yet are still at risk of missing this construction season but are not at risk of losing the ARRA funding.
Wayne Zyra asked how rail projects are affected by the stimulus funding. He also asked about GTCs role in high speed rail and freight issues. Richard Perrin responded that there are two sides to stimulus funding rail projects. One is the $8 billion high-speed rail initiative that has received a great deal of media attention recently. The other is freight rail projects which are eligible for funding under the surface transportation portion of ARRA. The latter were not submitted to GTC staff and NYSDOT Region 4 in time to be considered for ARRA funding, and raise issues of providing public funds to private entities.
Richard Perrin discussed issues related to the high-speed rail initiative. The Empire Corridor is one of eleven designated corridors in the country that is eligible to receive funding under the national High Speed Rail initiative. There have been indications that the Empire Corridor needs an estimated $3 to $5 billion investment to accommodate high-speed rail. However, there is only $8 billion available nationwide.
GTC would need to amend the TIP to include funding for the Empire Corridor improvements. The NYSDOT Office of Integrated Modal Services is leading the effort in New York State.
At this time, GTC staff do not know what is being proposed for high-speed rail service. A third rail in the CSX right-of-way dedicated to passenger rail service has been proposed but there is no funding proposed to obtain right-of-way. Currently, Amtrak pays CSX to operate passenger service on the freight tracks and must yield to freight trains. Accordingly, there is no incentive for CSX to provide the right-of-way at no cost.
While the rail corridor is generally wide enough for three tracks, it is uncertain if all the bridges can accommodate three tracks or what the conditions of the bridges are.
The State Rail Plan calls for a new Amtrak station to replace the existing station. In 2002, GTC conducted a study that indicated a new station will cost $20 million. Given increases in materials costs, it may cost $30 million to reconstruct the station now but there is no funding specified for a new station in the information that has been made public.
Other issues include operating speeds, reliability, and costs to travelers. While the average speed on the Empire Corridor would be increased, it is not as high as some other states are proposing. Current estimates place the travel time to from Rochester to Albany at a level similar to private automobiles with unknown costs to the traveler. While a dedicated third track would make passenger rail service more reliable it wouldnt necessarily save time or money for travelers using other modes (e.g., private automobiles, buses, etc.) in the near-term.
Another issue is the lack of national operating standards for high speed rail. When the Interstate system was built, it was done so using national standards. Without standards for high speed passenger rail service, New York may make investments that are inconsistent with neighboring states. For example, New York may operate at a higher speed than Massachusetts but slower than Ohio.
GTC has been supportive of the concept of high speed passenger rail service for many years as indicated in previous and the LRTPs. At this time, there is not enough specific information on what is being proposed to take a position on the initiative.
Wayne Zyra commented that there also needs to be consideration of the many at-grade crossings in the region. In particular, communities like East Rochester and Fairport might be concerned about increased train speeds. Mary Pat Hancock stated that such intersections are also a concern in Genesee County.
Richard Perrin responded that improvements would be needed at many at-grade crossings. GTC staff have asked for a listing of the projects that would be undertaken as part of implementing high-speed passenger rail but has not received this information. Regardless, GTC has always been supportive of implementing high-speed rail in this region.
Mary Pat Hancock commented that this is a complex initiative. Richard Perrin added that the rail corridor improvements present many opportunities but more detail is needed.
6. Action Items
a. Adopting an agreement identifying responsibilities for carrying out the metropolitan transportation planning process in the Genesee-Finger Lakes Region of New York State to fulfill the requirements of Title 23 Section 450.314 of the Code of Federal Regulations Action on Proposed Resolution 09-14
Richard Perrin discussed the need for Resolution 09-14 to meet portions of the joint FHWA/FTA Final Rule on Metropolitan Planning requiring:
that MPOs, States, and public transportation operators cooperatively determine their mutual responsibilities for carrying out the Federally-required metropolitan planning process; and
that the agreement include specific provisions for developing the LRTP and TIP, and their associated financial plans, as well as the Annual List of Obligations for projects funded through the TIP.
FHWA and FTA have indicated a preference for a single agreement among all parties rather than separate agreements between agencies. This draft agreement does so and supports existing processes by focusing on what each party will do rather than how the tasks will be accomplished, which can change over time.
The draft agreement that was included in the meeting package was reviewed by the FHWA, FTA, and NYSDOT Main Office. FHWA requested that the sequence of some clauses be switched so that information is made available prior to financial plans and the Annual List of Obligations being developed. NYSDOT Main Office requested that the NYSDOT signatory be changed to Acting Commissioner Stanley Gee because Executive Order 1672 requires that the Commissioner sign all agreements.
Currently no other agreements exist in the state. All MPOs in New York State were cited in their joint FHWA/FTA certification reviews for not having such agreements in place. Richard thanked Dan Hallowell and Rob Slaver of NYSDOT Region 4 and Hal Carter of RGRTA for their review and comment on the initial drafts of the agreement.
Dan Hallowell thanked Richard for aiding in the documents quick turnaround from NYSDOT Main Office. Terrence Rice asked if the agreement could serve as a model for other MPOs. Richard responded that the agreement could not be copied, but could serve as model for other MPOs.
The RGRTA Board of Commissioners authorized RGRTA CEO Mark Aesch to sign the agreement at its June 2, 2009 meeting.
Wayne Zyra moved to approve Resolution 09-14 with the requested changes; Dan Hogan seconded the motion. The motion passed unopposed.
b. Amending the FY 2009-2010 UPWP budget to reflect the contribution of actual FY 2008-2009 rollover amounts Action on Proposed Resolution 09-15
Richard Perrin discussed the need for Resolution 09-15. This budget amendment is an annual activity that reconciles estimated rollover amounts with actual rollover amounts based on fourth quarter activity. The UPWP is adopted in mid-March but the fiscal year does not end until March 31. During the development of the UPWP, balances as of the end of the third quarter are used to determine the total amount of rollover for the program.
Now that fourth quarter activity has been reported, task budgets have been adjusted to reflect actual balances. The actual budget reduction of $400,369 represents the advancement of existing projects in the fourth quarter. The adjustment of $20,000 in Task 1600 Program Reserve does not represent an expenditure of funds but will be discussed under agenda item 6.c.
Paul Haney moved to approve Resolution 09-15; Wayne Zyra seconded the motion. The motion passed unopposed.
c. Amending the FY 2009-2010 Unified Planning Work Program by adding Task 3105 SAFETEA-LU Succession Program Action on Proposed Resolution 09-16
Richard Perrin discussed the proposal for a new UPWP task. As discussed earlier in the meeting, SAFETEA-LU expires on September 30, 2009. It is likely that the next authorization will not occur prior to the expiration of SAFETEA-LU. Given the uncertainty, it is proposed to add a new UPWP task that would allow GTC to conduct those activities needed to proactively address any issues or opportunities that may arise.
All indications are that MPOs will be included in the next authorization but their form and requirements may include additional responsibilities. There is the potential for larger MPOs (including GTC, potentially) to directly manage and administer a Metropolitan Mobility and Access program.
The budget amount proposed for the task represents support for approximately one year of GTC staff activities. When the current UPWP was developed, there was a set-aside of $574,000 from this years allocation of FHWA Planning funds to address the rescission provisions of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA), which require pro rata reductions across all FHWA programs, including Metropolitan Planning. The Federal Fiscal Year 2009 Omnibus Appropriations Act revised this provision for the funds appropriated by this Act.
The balance of the funding for this task includes $20,000 from Task 1600 Program Reserve and savings from the previous years budget for GTC staff activities.
It appears that the provisions of EISA will still apply to other rescissions made in Federal Fiscal Year 2009. If there is not a fix for the rescission of funds scheduled to occur at the end of SAFETEA-LU, approximately $450,000 would be required to meet the rescission. Any rescission related to the expiration of SAFETEA-LU would affect the ability to maintain a full year of staff activity.
Richard noted that the next authorization would likely include greater flexibility within the federal-aid program at the national level. This change would welcomed by GTC staff as it would likely benefit member agencies.
Scott Leathersich moved to approve Resolution 09-16; E. Joseph Gozelski seconded the motion. The motion passed unopposed.
d. Accepting the submission of a summary memorandum and a report as evidence of completion of various UPWP Tasks
Vice Chairperson Hancock suggested that Resolutions 09-12 and 09-17 be considered under one motion; no member or alternate objected.
(1) Accepting the summary memorandum, Monroe County High Accident Location Program, as evidence of completion of UPWP Task 6230 Action on Proposed Resolution 09-12
(2) Accepting the report, Town of Penfield Bicycle Facilities Master Plan, as evidence of completion of UPWP Task 8750 Action on Proposed Resolution 09-17
Richard Perrin discussed the Monroe County High Accident Location Program and the findings of the project.
Richard Perrin discussed the Town of Penfield Bicycle Facilities Master Plan, highlighting the study process and recommendations.
Terry Rice moved to approve Resolutions 09-12 and 09-17; Dan Hogan seconded the motion. The motion passed unopposed.
e. Adopting amendments to the 2007-2012 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP)
Vice Chairperson Hancock suggested that Resolutions 09-20 and 09-21 be considered under one motion; no member or alternate objected.
(1) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by deleting the Hamlin Parma Townline Road (NYS Route 18 to LOSP) Rehabilitation project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-20
(2) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by deleting the Colby Street (Sweden Ogden Townline Rd. to Washington St.) Rehabilitation project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-21
Richard Perrin stated that Resolutions 09-20 and 09-21 remove projects originally selected to receive ARRA funds because they are not federal-aid eligible. The funds will be available for projects on the Illustrative projects list.
Wayne Zyra moved to approve Resolutions 09-20 and 09-21; Scott Leathersich seconded the motion. The motion passed unopposed.
Vice Chairperson Hancock suggested that Resolutions 09-22 through 09-38 be considered under one motion; no member or alternate objected.
(3) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by increasing the total cost of the Culver Road (E. Ridge Road to Irondequoit Bay Outlet Bridge) Rehabilitation project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-22
(4) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by decreasing the total cost of the Whalen Road (NYS Route 286 to Five Mile Line Road) Rehabilitation project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-23
(5) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by increasing the total cost of and adding a phase to the Route 390 @ I-490 Interchange Improvements project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-24
(6) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by modifying the scope and changing the description of the Rt. 590 Rehabilitation (Norton St. to Titus Ave.) project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-25
(7) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by increasing the total cost of and adding phases to the University Avenue/ArtWalk II project Action on Proposed Resolution
(8) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by adding the Lehigh Valley Trail Extension and Enhancement project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-27
(9) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by adding the Village of Medina Downtown to School Sidewalk and Streetscape project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-28
(10) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by adding the Town of Marion Hamlet Connectivity project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-29
(11) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by adding the Erie Canalway Trail Development (Town of Arcadia) project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-30
(12) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by adding the Campus Loop Road Extension for St. John Fisher College, NY project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-31
(13) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by adding the Jefferson Avenue Rehabilitation Project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-32
(14) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by adding the Midtown Redevelopment Transportation Infrastructure Improvements project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-33
(15) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by modifying the scope and reducing the total cost of the Replace 31 RTS Transit Buses project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-34
(16) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by renaming and increasing the total cost of the RTS Site & Facility Improvements project Action on Proposed Resolution
(17) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by adding the ARRA FTA Section 5311 Program Block project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-36
(18) Amending the 2007-2012 TIP by adding the Satellite Transit Center Construction project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-37
(19) Amending the 2007-2012 Transportation Improvement Program by adding the Jackson Road/Stone Road Shoulder Construction project (TIP # N07-18IMN1, PIN TBD) as an Illustrative project Action on Proposed Resolution 09-38
Paul Haney asked about Resolution 09-31. As he understands it, this would be a private road on private property. He asked how federal funds can be for this type of project. Richard Perrin responded that this project is an earmark in the Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 2009 Omnibus Appropriations Act. As such, the legislation supersedes federal eligibility requirements, making the federal funds available to the project. He added that Congress has recently begun requiring that new earmark requests be for projects that are federal-aid eligible.
Paul Haney asked whether the funds would still be available to the region if the Board did not amend the TIP to include this project. Richard Perrin responded that it is likely that the funds would be reprogrammed to another project outside the region.
Paul Haney asked for clarification on Resolution 09-37. Richard Perrin responded that RGRTA has evaluated satellite transfer centers to improve service for primarily suburban riders. The evaluation showed a need for a transfer center at the University of Rochester/Strong Hospital area. Mark Aesch added that about 1,500 passengers per day transfer at this location. This project would create a transfer center with amenities, including retail, for passengers.
Richard Perrin discussed Resolutions 09-22 and 09-23. He noted that Monroe County revised the cost estimates for the projects and the amendments create a net savings that will be available for projects on the Illustrative projects list.
Dan Hallowell added that lower final estimates and bid savings have allowed the region to advance five projects on the Illustrative projects list. NYSDOT Region 4 is reviewing the latest bids and expects to be able to fund additional projects.
Richard Perrin reviewed that proposed changes via Resolutions 09-24 and 09-25.
Richard Perrin reviewed Resolutions 09-26 through 09-30 which add projects selected to receive funding through the statewide Transportation Enhancements Program (TEP) and the ARRA TEP set-aside.
Richard Perrin reviewed Resolutions 09-31 through 09-33 and 09-37 which add projects that received an earmark in the FFY 2009 Omnibus Appropriations Act.
Richard Perrin reviewed Resolutions 09-34 and 09-35. RGRTA received a specific allocation of ARRA funds for projects in the RTS service area. The actual allocation was higher than originally expected. These Resolutions incorporate the additional ARRA funds into the TIP and allow RGRTA to progress the one Illustrative public transportation project in the region.
Richard Perrin reviewed Resolution 09-36. ARRA includes a set-aside for public transportation in rural and small urban areas. NYSDOT Public Transportation Bureau is responsible for identifying projects to receive funding under this program. New York State has not yet formally announced the projects to receive funding.
This project provides funds for public transportation operations in Genesee, Livingston, Ontario, Orleans, Seneca, Wayne, and Wyoming counties. Yates County does not currently have a public transit operation. This Resolution is proactive since portions of Livingston, Ontario, and Wayne counties are in the Rochester Transportation Management Area, which requires the funding to be included in the TIP. The amounts of funding for each County were provided by NYSDOT.
Richard Perrin discussed Resolution 09-38, which would add the Jackson Road/Stone Road Shoulder Construction project as an Illustrative project. GTC and NYSDOT Region 4 staffs work cooperatively to evaluate proposals for the Transportation Enhancements Program. The Board adopted a regional priority list in September 2008. The Transportation Enhancements Advisory Committee skipped this project, ranked fourth, in favor of the fifth- and sixth-ranked projects.
This Resolution is limited to additional funding from the TEP or the ARRA TEP set-aside becoming available. No other fund source would be programmed to this project.
Terry Rice moved to approve Resolutions 09-22 through 09-38; Dan Hogan seconded. The motion passed unopposed.
f. Certifying that the selection of projects to benefit from funding provided via The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 wholly incorporates the prioritization criteria of said legislation Action on Proposed Resolution 09-18
Richard Perrin discussed Resolution 09-18. NYSDOT Main Office has requested that all regions certify that the selection process they used for ARRA projects addresses the criteria of ARRA. NYSDOT encouraged project solicitation, evaluation, and selection during the development of the legislation to ensure that the regions would meet the strict use-it-or-lose-it expected to be part of ARRA.
GTC staff evaluated this regions solicitation and selection processes and determined that it meets all project selection criteria of ARRA. Richard reviewed each criterion and how the region addressed that criterion in the project evaluation. Specifically:
The primary intent of ARRA is to create new jobs. This region added the highest percentage (96 percent) of new projects in the state;
ARRA requires 50 percent of the funding be obligated within 120 days of being apportioned to FHWA. GTC evaluated project readiness as part of the selection process. This region has exceed the obligation thresholds of the use-it-or-lose-it provision;
ARRA requires that projects in economically distressed areas received priority for funding. The House bill included this provision but the Senate bill did not. Many areas thought this provision would not be included in the final legislation. This region felt using this criterion was the right thing to do. This region has a higher percentage of funds programmed to projects in economically distressed areas than the statewide average;
ARRA places an emphasis on cost-effectiveness. The selected projects further this regions emphasis on cost-effective improvements that extend the useful life of our roads and bridges to save millions of dollars in future reconstruction costs; and
ARRA places an emphasis on geographic equity. Every county in the TIP area and several municipalities are advancing at least one project.
William Sullivan moved to approve Resolution 09-18; Jerry Davis seconded. The motion passed unopposed.
g. Amending the prioritized list of Illustrative projects that will benefit from The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 should additional funding from said legislation become available to the Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) area Action on Proposed Resolution 09-19
Richard Perrin reviewed Resolution 09-19. As mentioned earlier, RGRTA received a higher allocation of ARRA funding than originally expected. Also, the City of Rochester agreed to change the priority of the Genesee Riverway Multi-Use Trail (Ford St. to the Erie Canal) Rehabilitation project given the amendment to the limits of the East Henrietta Road Reconstruction project at the March 2009 GTC Board meeting.
E. Joseph Gozelski moved to approve Resolution 09-19; William Sullivan seconded. The motion passed unopposed.
7. New Business
Richard Perrin stated that there have been suggestions for alternatives to reduce the size of meeting packages. He discussed one proposal that would provide Board members with a cover memo, location map, agenda, and summary document of the proposed actions. All proposed Resolutions and supporting materials would be available via the GTC website. Individual Board members would have to opt-out of receiving full meeting packages in the mail. The Planning Committee would still receive all the meeting materials since it a technical committee that recommends actions to be taken by the Board. Richard asked for any reactions.
Dorothy Huber suggested that two-sided copying is another option that would save paper. However, she would be happy to get the meeting information online. Richard Perrin responded that some meeting materials are not created by GTC so two-sided copying can be difficult but GTC staff would do their best to accommodate the request.
8. Next Meeting
The next GTC Board meeting will be held Thursday, September 10, 2009 at 8:30 a.m. at the Radisson Hotel in Henrietta.
The meeting adjourned at 10:05 a.m.