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Volume 3, Issue 5
May 18, 2011 
What can be expected from government in next 15 months?
 

Mary Scott NabersMost state governments throughout the country are winding down legislative sessions. Budget controversy and funding agony has been common in every state. Lengthy discussions, passionate arguments and even occasional fights have been the norm. Public demonstrations have resulted in almost every state. That is what we expect in a democratic society, but the mood is different this year and predictions are that significant changes in the way government functions will be evident in another few months.  


We at Strategic Partnerships will be monitoring the anticipated changes carefully. In another few weeks it will be possible to see where funding has been allocated and how public officials plan to move forward under the current budgetary constraints.

 

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IN THIS ISSUE
New York wants digital city title
Texans pass $2.138B in bond votes
Public-private partnerships
Other upcoming contracting opportunities
Where are they now?
Opportunity of the week
People
Calendar of events
Don't miss another issue
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New York announces strategy to become leading digital city

 

'Road map' document will provide framework for taking city to next level 

Rachel SterneLooking to become the nation's leading digital city, New York officials this week rolled out their "Road Map for the Digital City," its strategy for reaching that goal. Stressing Internet access, open government, citizen engagement and digital industry growth, New York is seeking to enhance its use of digital media. The city's Chief Digital Officer Rachel Sterne (pictured) held meetings with stakeholders in both the public and private sectors to determine how to proceed. The result was a road map to improve how the city engages with its citizens, including increasing their access to new technologies, making government information and services more transparent and promoting the technology industry.  

Sterne said the mayor has provided the opportunity to examine the way the city government innovates digitally, said Sterne, who added that the city already leads the way in many areas. "We now have the opportunity to build on the work that is already happening and bring it to the next level."


Road MapThe report notes that the city has a digital audience of approximately 4 million. Last year, more than 202 million accessed the city's Web site. The report also pointed out that 98 percent of New Yorkers have residential broadband access.

 

After conducting reviews, officials found New Yorkers want expanded Internet access, a fresh new city Web site, real-time information, more public Wi-Fi, real-time transit updates, increased methods of making mobile payments, and more digital 311 tools. Among businesses and technologists, the greatest call was for better broadband connectivity, a deeper engineering employment pool and read/write access to city information.


As a result of the study and interview, the City of New York will begin as soon as possible on such projects as:  

  • Ensuring that all New Yorkers, particularly school children, can access the Internet;
  • Offering more public information and increase transparency and efficiency;
  • Improving digital tools, including 3-1-1;
  • Making improvements and upgrades to the city's Web site;
  • Upping the city's workforce development programs in the digital arena;
  • Enhancing senior centers regarding technology;
  • Providing Wi-Fi in parks and other public places; and
  • Providing broadband connectivity in schools, libraries and recreation centers.
Texans pass $2.138 million in bond elections

 

Millions of dollars in contracting opportunities result from successful referendums 

Texas entities holding bond elections in the state on May 14 fared well. Of the $2.62 billion in bond referendums held statewide, $2.138 billion of them passed. A nearly $86.2 million College of the Mainland bond issue was failing by 15 votes at press time today. Sixteen provisional ballots have yet to be counted. All 16 would have to be "yes" votes for the issue to survive.


BallotAmong the larger bond issues that passed:

 

  • City of Georgetown - $42.5 million - to build a new 60,000-square-foot public safety building;
  • City of Longview - $52.6 million - for city street improvements;
  • Smith County - $35 million - for a new jail;
  • Eanes ISD - $54 million - for new construction, ADA improvements, energy conservation projects, technology, safety, transportation, roofing, flooring, painting, plumbing, curriculum, instruction and assessment; and
  • Grapevine-Colleyville ISD - $124.5 million - for maintaining, improving and expanding existing facilities, equipment and new classrooms for elementary schools, career and technology expansion at Grapevine High School, district-wide technology upgrades, library resources, furniture, kitchen equipment and school buses.

SPI has available for sale a comprehensive document showing the results of the more than 80 bond elections, including the total amount of the bonds that passed and what each bond issue included. To order your copy, contact Reagan Weil at rweil@spartnerships.com or 512-531-3917.

 

Question MarkTake our survey!! 

 

Take Strategic Partnerships, Inc.'s 60-second survey about procurement challenges. If you work in the public sector, click here to begin. Your responses are anonymous. Results in next week's State & Local Government Pipeline.

 


Public-Private Partnerships...

Feds, local entities looking for public partners for projects

 

Feds seek private partners with developers for hydroelectric power plants

Anne CastleWith three of the top 15 potential hydropower sites in the West, Utah is preparing for construction of hydroelectric power plants. Federal administrators are turning to the private sector for a partnership with developers to get that construction under way. A study was recently ordered by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation that shows Utah's propensity for hydropower plans. Anne Castle (pictured), Assistant Secretary for Water and Science at the U.S. Department of the Interior, said the first requests for proposals will be for Central Utah Project's Spanish Fork Flow Control structure. Construction could begin within a year and produce enough electricity to power 2,000 homes. "Adding hydropower capability at existing facilities is a cost-effective and environmentally sustainable way to build our clean energy portfolio, create local jobs and stimulate the economy," Castle said.

 

Georgia looking to public-private partnership for toll lanes on interstates

Georgia officials are looking to enter into a public-private partnership with a $1 billion project to add toll lanes on Interstates 575 and 75 in Cobb and Cherokee counties. Like many other states facing a lack of revenue necessary for these major transit projects, Georgia is hoping to persuade a private sector partner to join in constructing and maintaining the toll lanes. Their investment could be paid with toll receipts.

 

Texas community college district enters into its first P3

John StrybosAlamo Colleges in San Antonio, Texas, is among the growing number of institutions of higher education turning to P3s for a new revenue source for projects. The colleges' trustees recently approved the district's first public-private partnership to create a mixed-use development. The $30 million project includes 150 student housing units, 10,000 square feet of retail space and a 1,000-car parking garage The garage will be used by students during the day and a fee will be charged for non-student parking at night. The funds generating from this first phase of construction will be used to fund a 100,000-square-foot academic facility and a 500-ton central plant. John Strybos (pictured), facilities director for the Alamo Colleges, said the second phase plans could change as the college's needs change. The 4.4-acre site on which the development will be built is currently being used by the college for parking space. The developer is financing, constructing and managing the project and the college district will provide the land. Fees from student parking will help pay for the garage.

 

May 2011 Tx Bond Election

Upcoming education opportunities

 

Stanford University planning $3.5 billion medical facilities expansion

Michael PetersonStanford University is moving closer and closer to expanding its hospital after the Palo Alto Planning and Transportation Commission recently voted to recommend the projects' environmental impact report to the Palo Alto City Council. Officials say the benefits of the $3.5 billion project far outweigh any environmental problems. The council is expected to take up the matter at its June 6 meeting. At that time, they will face an agenda item to approve the report, zoning changes and entitlements related to building the facility. According to plans, Stanford will pay the city tens of millions of dollars for affordable housing, climate change and other civic endeavors as part of a development agreement. The expansion would mean an additional 1.3 million square feet added to Stanford and Lucile Packard Children's hospitals and the School of Medicine. Some 144 beds would be added at Stanford Hospital, 104 will be added at Lucile Packard and new operating, diagnostic and treatment suites will be added at both. Michael Peterson (pictured), Stanford Hospital vice president of special projects, said the project is at a point "where we can see the end of the process" and the actual construction day is nearing.  

 

Georgia school district to issue $21 million in bonds for new school complex

The Calhoun (Georgia) City Council and Calhoun school board have approved the sale of $21 million in bonds to begin construction of the new middle/high school complex. The $33 million complex could begin construction now if the bonds are sold instead of having to wait for proceeds from a one-cent sales tax. Construction of the school will begin at the end of May, once school is completed for the year. 

 

Tennessee school district planning new schools, expansions

New school facilities in Baxter and Monterey are being planned and an expansion of the Burks Middle School is on the table as well, according to officials of the Putnam County (Tennessee) School Board. The school board approved construction documents for the Burks project and agreed to solicit bids. Bid documents are expected to be reviewed in a June 30 meeting. The Burks project includes two pre-k classrooms, four kindergarten classrooms, four first grade classrooms, an English language learners and English as a second language classroom, a CDC suite and storage area. The project is expected to take 12 months. The new Monterey High School plan calls for the design phase through January of next year, with bidding in March or April of 2012. The Baxter Middle School building project is in the design phase. The design is expected to be completed in September, with bidding beginning in February 2012.  

 

Kansas school to get new heating, cooling system

Gene JohnsonOnce considered for closing, the Diemer Elementary School in Overland Park, Kansas, will remain open. Officials approved purchase of a new heating and cooling system for the school. Shawnee Mission School District Superintendent Gene Johnson (pictured) said the district had originally considered shuttering the school because of the cost of needed repairs and students would have been transferred to another school. However, they reconsidered and agreed to replace the crumbling pipes at Diemer at a cost of between $200,000 and $350,000. "We will find the money that we need to complete this project," said Johnson.

 

Land purchase announced for new Alabama high school

School officials in Montgomery, Alabama, have announced the site selection that will become the home of the new Montgomery Public High School. Five possible locations were considered for the school. The new high school is projected to open in 2013 and will facilitate 800 students. There is also room for expansion to serve as many at 1,500 students in future years. Money for the project comes from a $24.1 million Qualified School Construction Bond and $15 million from the city.

 

South Carolina school district announces 'pay as you go' plan

In the Florence, South Carolina, School District 1, officials have adopted a "pay as you go" financial plan for moving forward with plans to improve existing schools and construct new ones. The plan will eventually provide more than $72 million by 2013 and will lead to the construction of four new schools by 2016. Under the plan, more than $21 million will be divided among Carver, Delmae Heights and an elementary school project in 2010. More than $30 million will be divided between Moore Intermediate and North Vista elementary school projects during the current year as well, and $10 million will be divided between North Vista and Royall elementaries in 2012. Another $10 million will go to Royall in 2013. The board will choose an architectural and construction plan by June 1 and will decide if it will build a new Royall on its existing site or move it to where Moore is located now. Officials are mulling a $65.15 million bond issue or a $93.45 million referendum. The first consideration would build two elementary schools and one middle school. The second option would build two elementary schools and two middle schools.

 

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New York county seeks to borrow to replace Islanders' arena

Edward ManganoVoters in a suburban New York county this summer will be asked to allow the county to borrow $400 million to replace the New York Islanders' arena and construct a minor league baseball park. If approved, the new arena would keep the professional hockey team there through 2045, said Edward Mangano (pictured), Nassau County Executive. Mangano said the revenue from the Islanders and sales tax receipts should be able to repay the bonds over the course of the 30-year lease. The new arena would cost approximately $350 million and the baseball park would be $50 million. The Islanders' lease expires in 2015. Mangano said if the borrowing plan is approved in August, construction of the new arena should be completed by then.

 

Georgia school district to issue $21 million in bonds for new school complex

The Calhoun (Georgia) City Council and Calhoun school board have approved the sale of $21 million in bonds to begin construction of the new middle/high school complex. The $33 million complex could begin construction now if the bonds are sold instead of having to wait for proceeds from a one-cent sales tax. Construction of the school will begin at the end of May, once school is completed for the year.

 

Federal aid cuts threaten projects at rural airports nationwide

The federal Essential Air Service program has become vulnerable to budget cuts and small airports nationwide are hoping to keep the program solvent. A proposal has been floated that would phase out the $200 million Essential Air Service program by October 2013, according to a measure heard in the U.S. House. On the Senate side of the aisle, a competing measure would continue the subsidies, but tighten eligibility criteria, disqualifying community airports within 90 miles of a larger hub or average fewer than 10 passengers each day. That could drop 40 airports from the program.

 

Pennsylvania county planning makeover of PNC Field

Corey O'BrienIn an effort to keep a Triple-A baseball team in Northeast Pennsylvania for at least 30 years, officials in Lackawanna County are preparing for a $40 million makeover of PNC Field. The project will be funded in part by a $20 million state grant. Officials expect next to hire an architectural/engineering firm to design the stadium renovation and then hire a construction manager to oversee the project. Two other state grants totaling $5 million are also being sought. County Commissioner Corey O'Brien (pictured) said the project "is going to happen" based on the $20 million grant. He said without the grant, the county would have lost the baseball team.

 

Ruidosa Downs street projects too low; will be rebid

It's unusual, but bids for two street improvement projects in Ruidoso Downs are going back out for bids because they were too low. The bids received would have used on about 60 percent of the federal Community Development Block Grant funds available and less than 80 percent of the state co-op funds. Officials opted to restructure the bids to add additional alternates so the city can use all of the funds. If not used, the overage is forfeited. City officials now will seek restructured projects to use more of the state and federal funding. The two projects would e for improvements to North Central Drive, River Land and Nevada Lane.

 

Ohio courthouse construction slated, including stained glass dome

Van Wert CourthouseA $525,000 renovation project is slated for the third floor of the Van Wert County (Ohio) courthouse (pictured). The project includes restoration of the building's stained glass dome. The project includes the painting and reflooring in the courtroom on the third floor, along with mechanical and lighting upgrades.

 

Energy upgrades also will be looked at for the courthouse, as they will be in other county buildings - the sheriff's office, jail and courthouse annex.

 

Energy savings are expected to make up nearly $200,000 of the cost for the project. Officials may also change the heating and cooling system and replace windows. Water and sewer systems also will be examined. As far as the dome is concerned, it will be sealed and the stained glass restored.

 

Maryland County announces plans to build second district police station

A second district police station in Bethesda, Maryland, will rely on a public-private partnership to be completed. The Montgomery County Council voted to move forward with the deal with a developer that will cost the county $750,000 less. The developer would build the police station as part of a residential development with up to 400 housing units. The county would give the developer the land on which the current police station is located. The estimated cost for the station is $21.8 million, with the county expected to fund $10 million, $8 million of which would go to the developer and $2 million would be used for furniture, fixtures and oversight costs. Subtracting the $10 million and the $8.7 million value of the land, the county's contribution would have left a balance of $3.1 million for the developer to pay. Further study on the land value and density value reduced the developer's cost.

 

New York water district plans $18 million in improvements

The Port Washington (New York) Water District is planning to make capital improvements carrying a cost of $18.4 million. The district will buy land in the Harbor Park area and build a storage and booster pumping station. Other improvements include replacing 20,000 feet of a four-inch water main, replacing or painting the Beach Hill Tank and making improvements to Hewlett Well No. 4.

 

New sewage treatment plant in the works in New Jersey borough

Ron SworenA new sewage treatment plant will be paid for by $14.5 million in bonds approved recently by the Frenchtown (New Jersey) Borough Council. Mayor Ron Sworen (pictured) said the bonds will be generated via approximately $10 million in loans from the state Environmental Infrastructure Trust and the remainder will come from a U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development program. Sworen said the bonds will be paid back through utility fees collected from residents and connection fees from what is anticipated will be more than 230 additional future sewer hookups once the plant comes online. The new plant will replace one built in the 1960s. The project also includes demolition of the old plant, new buildings and facilities for the Department of Public Works and flood-proofing those buildings. The wastewater pumping building and the public works garage would have roofs installed with southern exposure to facilitate solar panels.

 

Court facilities in Pennsylvania city to undergo safety, space renovations

Using surplus budget funds from last year's budget, officials in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, are planning to begin construction later this year on a $2 million renovation project on downtown court facilities. The changes will be both safety and space renovations. The design project will also include civil engineering for a sally port entrance for prisoners and engineering for electrical and plumbing updates. Scheduled as part of the renovation are the old courthouse, the courthouse annex building and the old fire hall. Several older buildings will be demolished to accommodate additional parking space. The renovations and additions will be performed in stages. Completion date is anticipate for mid-2012.

 

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Where are they now?
 Are you a government official who has moved into a new position or to a new agency? Did you recently retire? Were you recently named to an executive-level position at a state-supported college, university or community college? Have you secured a new job as superintendent of a public school? If so, we'd like to hear from you - and so would your friends and colleagues - for our "Where Are They Now" column. Just drop us a line at editor@spartnerships.com and let us know about your previous job and where you are now. This week we feature Rochelle Hendricks.

 

R. HendricksRochelle Hendricks has more than 20 years experience working on education issues in New Jersey. She began her education career as a teacher at the Rumson Fair Haven Regional High School District. She worked more than 15 years at Princeton University in a variety of positions, including Assistant Dean of Students and director of Educational Opportunities Program and interim director of the Women's Program. Hendricks became part of the New Jersey Department of Education in 1987 after having served in various capacities within the department, including director of the Office of Vocational-Technical, Career and Innovative Programs, director of the Office of Innovative Programs and Schools and managing the Charter School Unit within that office. She most recently served as deputy education commissioner, heading the Division of School Effectiveness and Choice. Hendricks was recently tapped by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to become the state's first secretary of higher education, with oversight of policy at the state's 31 public and 32 independent higher education institutions. 

 

Opportunity of the week...
Feasibility study recommends $600 million plan to modernize a Maryland circuit court campus that would renovate the city's courthouses and build a new one.Want to know more? Contact Reagan Weil at 512-531-3900 or rweil@spartnerships.com.
 
People

 

Bonita JacobsCarli SchiffnerRoque GeraldThe Georgia Board of Regents has appointed Bonita Jacobs (top left), executive director of the National Institute for the Study of Transfer Students at the University of North Texas, as the new president of North Georgia College and State University, replacing David Potter, who is retiring. Carli C. Schiffner (top middle), former chief of staff to State University of New York Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy, has been selected as the college's new Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, effective in July. Roque R. Gerald (top right), director of the District of Columbia's child welfare agency, has resigned, effective at the end of the month, after serving the agency since July 2008. Donald Bohach, vice president of marketing for Stupp Corp., has been appointed by Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal as a member of the Greater Baton Rouge Port Authority. Andrew Clinger, director of the Department of Administration for the state of Nevada, has been chosen as the new city manager for the city of Reno. The Encinitas, California, City Council has chosen Gus Vina of Sacramento as its new city manager. Texas A&M University Chancellor Michael D. McKinney (middle right), who has overseen the flagship campus and 11 regional campuses for five years, recently announced plans to Michael McKinneyJudith NakamuraOscar Vigoaretire in July. Judith Nakamura (middle center) was recently re-elected chief judge of the Bernalillo County (New Mexico) Metropolitan Court by the judges of the state's busiest court. Miami-Dade Police Assistant Director Oscar Vigoa (middle left), who began with the department in 1978, has retired after reportedly moonlighting as a law enforcement trainer in Panama. After having worked for several state colleges, political insider Hank Huckaby has been hired as the next chancellor of the University System of Georgia, effective July 1, when he will replace current Chancellor Erroll Davis, who is retiring. Gary Rawlings, the new city manager in Coatesville, Pennsylvania, was recently officially sworn into office. Scott Miller, associate general manager-electric supply, has been chosen the next General Manager of City Utilities in Springfield, Missouri, replacing the retiring John Twitty on June 11. Cami Anderson (bottom right), former executive director of Teach for America and chief program officer for New Leaders for New Schools, has been chosen as the new superintendent of the Newark, New Jersey, schools. Dorothy Leland (bottom left), who has served as Georgia College president since 2004, has been recommended by University of California President Mark G. Yudof to become the next chancellor of UC Merced, to succeed Sung-Mo "Steve" Kang. Texas Dorothy LelandChris BarbicCami Andersoncharter school operator and founder of Houston-based YES Prep Public Schools Chris Barbic (bottom center) has been picked to head Tennessee's special school district for failing schools, the new Achievement School District that will take over five schools this fall. Larry J. Kosmont, who has held a variety of positions with the cities of Santa Monica, Seal Beach, Bell Gardens and Burbank (all in California), has been chosen as city manager for the city of Montebello. Edison State College District President Kenneth P. Walker has announced the appointment of Robert Jones, vice president and provost of the Hendry/Glades Center, will continue in that post while he serves as Interim Collier Campus president. Terry Dove, who has been serving as interim police chief for the city of Aledo, Illinois, has been named permanent chief and will also take on the responsibilities of city administrator, replacing Janice Green, who has announced her plans to retire.

 

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Calendar of events

TxDOT Ft. Worth Small Business Briefing conference seet in July 

The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) Business Outreach and Program (BOP) Services reaches across Texas to provide small and minority-owned business communities an opportunity to learn more about contracting opportunities with state entities. The final Small Business Briefing conference for FY2011 is set for July 20 in San Antonio. Information will be available to help small business owners better understand how to do business with the agency and the State of Texas. The sessions not only allow small businesses to be introduced to TxDOT and other state agencies, but also allow them to learn more about the economic development opportunities in their regions.  It also gives agencies a chance to show the myriad of prospects available for small and minority businesses in the state. For more information and to register, click here or call 1.866.480.2519, Option 2. Planning for the 2012 fiscal year events is under way. Please visit www.txdot.gov for updated information.

 

AGC's HR Professionals Conference slated Oct. 4-6

The Associated General Contractors Human Resources Professionals Conference is set for Oct. 4-6 at the Crowne Plaza in Kansas City, Missouri. The gathering is billed as the premier event for human resources professionals to learn and share HR practices related to the construction industry. The conference features a number of construction-related sessions on HR topics such as creating a mentoring program, hiring from a remote location, successfully operating in multiple jurisdictions, keep your organization safe from workplace violence, using pre-employment assessments and more. A federal Contracting Compliance Construction HR Workshop will be held the afternoon of Oct. 5 and the morning of Oct. 6. For conference and registration information, click here.

 

FAA procurement opportunities training conference, trade show slated

The Federal Aviation Administration will host its Annual National Small Business Procurement Opportunities Training Conference and Trade Show July 18-21 in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The gathering provides a forum for small businesses, including service-disabled and veteran-owned small business and 8(a) certified firms, to participate in technical and procurement opportunities workshops. Small businesses will be linked with large business and program managers to address business issues and concerns and offer information on who small businesses can do business with the agency. For more information, click here.

 

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