|Volume 3, Issue 10||June 22, 2011|
Workplaces of the future won't look the same
Technology is transforming the world...and that includes government and the way services will be delivered in the future. Telecommuting and office hoteling are becoming very attractive options in the public sector workplace.
Thousands of government workers do not really need offices or even personal desks. Computers, laptops, smart phones, conference calling, videoconferencing and wireless networks now allow people to work from any location. Many of them are choosing to work from home. Others simply require a vehicle with the appropriate technology.
Telecommuting had its beginnings in the private sector, but because of the savings that could be realized, government slowly began to embrace the concept. After much analysis, various pilot projects were launched and results have been good.
|Strategic Partnerships, Inc. provides opportunity identification for all 50 states. Click here for more information. |
|Senator's proposal would lead to more infrastructure P3s|
Illinois' Kirk says his plan will create $100 billion in transportation investments
Removal of federal restrictions on public-private partnerships and allowing states greater flexibility to generate transportation revenues are among the features of Illinois Sen. Mark Kirk's federal transportation proposal released this week. Kirk says his legislation will mobilize $100 billion in private investment to help build roads, airports and railroads. Calling his proposal the "Lincoln Legacy Infrastructure Development Act," Kirk compared his bill to President Abraham Lincoln's Transcontinental Railway Act that built 2,000 miles of railroad track in six years without financial assistance from Congress.
Saying the nation's roads, rail, transit and airports are facing "unprecedented" funding shortfalls, Kirk said history offers a better solution than increasing gas taxes. His proposal calls for building that infrastructure using public-private
|Sen. Mark Kirk |
partnerships without new federal borrowing. He cited National Surface Transportation Policy and Revenue Study Commission figures that indicate that only $90 billion is being spent on infrastructure needs that will top $225 billion annually through the year 2055.
The bill provides $42 billion in additional resources for project financing. That includes an annual funding increase from $122 million to $750 million for the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act, a loan program that finances major transportation projects, including public-private partnerships (P3s). It also enables more than $7 billion in loans for projects of more than $21 billion per year. It also creates a Public-Private Partnerships Challenge Grant Program urging states that have not already done so to pass legislation enabling P3s. Already, 29 states have passed legislation allowing some form of public-private partnerships. The act also lifts restrictions on $42 billion in P3s for highways. It allows for privatization of safety rest areas and removes caps on interstate tolling pilot programs.
The legislation incentivizes public-private partnerships in transit, reforms private rail financing efforts and encourages airport public-private partnerships.
Kirk says his Lincoln Legacy Act could make available more than $100 billion in new transportation investment. He points to other countries that have successfully used P3s for infrastructure needs. He said in British Columbia, Canada, 20 percent of all new infrastructure is designed, built and operated by the private sector. In Australia, that figure is between 10-15 percent.
|Tampa mayor looks to streamline development processes|
Newly appointed committee will recommend reorganization of City Hall
The mayor of Tampa, Florida, has appointed a committee whose goal will be to recommend ways to reorganize City Hall and streamline city rules and permitting. The goal, says Mayor Bob Buckhorn, is to ensure the city has a "unified economic development effort."
The committee is expected to meet at least monthly for the next six months, and to focus on making processes more user-friendly, to remove antiquated and outdated codes and regulations and to assess the organizational chart to ensure those involved in economic development are "all singing off the same song sheet," said the mayor.
Buckhorn will rely on the committee's recommendations to help reorganize the city's regulatory functions. He will then create the position of deputy mayor for economic opportunity to lead all efforts by the city on development, permitting and business.
California, Indiana zoos considering public-private partnerships
|Tom LaBonge |
The Los Angeles Zoo and the Mesker Park Zoo in Evansville, Indiana, could become the latest of such facilities nationwide to opt for a public-private partnership to operate their facilities. The L.A. Zoo is one of the largest city zoos in the country, with a $26 million budget through the city. Councilman Tom LaBonge, whose district includes the zoo, said he thinks the facility can better be run by an outside private group. "Most zoos have some sort of partnership," LaBonge said. "What we need to do is develop a partnership to make sure the zoo is run well," he said. Officials note a public-private partnership will result in better protection for the animals and workers. The city is currently seeking requests for proposals for a 25-year agreement, with the city contribution decreasing over the years. Officials point to the Dallas Zoo, which is run by a partnership, and is doing well.
Also studying privatization is the Mesker Park Zoo in Indiana. A committee looked at all the options and is focusing now on a public-private partnership. Officials not only say most other zoos that have made that transition are having success, but they also are more readily able to secure capital funding for projects. The current plan under consideration allows the city to keep ownership of the zoo and its assets and continue to be the zoo's primary donor.
Tulsa considers privatization or P3 for animal welfare facility
|Dewey Bartlett |
The City of Tulsa Animal Welfare facility is being looked at strongly as a possible candidate for privatization or a public-private partnership. Mayor Dewey Bartlett said the question remains whether the city is the best entity to operate an animal shelter. Funding remains the big issue for the shelter, and officials say some strategies should be developed to deal with the problems. The city has begun soliciting for best practices, innovative ideas and strategies to improve both the efficiency and effectiveness of the local facility. The information will be used to draft an RFP to seek an operator to run the facility.
|Upcoming education opportunities|
Pennsylvania college lists $15 million in capital improvement projects
|Robert Messina |
More than $15 million in capital improvement projects have been announced by the Burlington County (Pennsylvania) College. The college will now apply for state funding. College President Robert Messina said $10.9 million of that amount is for projects planned for FY 2012, and could be funded at a rate of 50 percent with state money set aside for county college capital improvements. An additional $4.3 million is the total for projects for FY 2011. Although the deadline for applications is upcoming, schools won't know until next year how much money will be received. Messina said state funding will allow campuses to proceed with necessary maintenance, renovation, safety and ADA issues. He also noted that deferred maintenance can be even more expensive than new construction. "You have to take care of the physical plant," said Messina. Among the projects for which funding is being sought are:
- $350,000 expansion of the Mount Laurel campus parking lot;
- $2 million for repair and replacement of HVAC systems at the Pemberton campus;
- $500,000 for upgrades to the Pemberton campus lighting and traffic control; and
- $970,000 for an emergency generator at Pemberton.
For 2010, projects include $1.8 million for interior road improvements, parking lot and storm water management infrastructure and $1.7 million for roads, traffic control and storm water management at Mount Laurel. Also included is $1.8 million to expand the Wellness Center at Pemberton. On the "wish list" is renovation of the Parker Center's student services area at a cost of $2.4 million.
University of West Virginia Evansdale to get major facelift
The West Virginia University Board of Governors has approved a $159.5 million plan that will result in the College of Physical Activity and Sports Science being moved out of the WVU Coliseum in Morgantown. The plans for the university also call for new buildings for the engineering research and agricultural sciences and construction of a new greenhouse. Other projects include construction of a Student Wellness Center and upgrades to recreation fields on campus. These improvements are part of a larger $279 million capital improvement plan.
Connecticut school district approves new high school construction
Voters in Guilford, Connecticut, have approved construction of a new $89.97 million high school. The state will reimburse $63.8 million of the cost. Residents also approved $500,000 to make the new building an emergency shelter and an additional $1.75 million for energy-efficient systems. Designs will be produced over the next year and construction is expected to begin in the fall of 2012. The first class expected to use the new high school will be during the 2014-15 school year. Passage of the issue was good news since voters last June turned down a proposal to spend $400,000 on designs for a new high school.
Two schools among entities to become part of wood heating system
|William Schlesinger |
The Vermont state government has plans to include two city schools and other government buildings in its wood-fired heating system. The action results from a successful bond issue for $2.75 million to help finance a $20 million biomass project that would hook up two schools, City Hall and the police and fire stations to the wood chip-burning system that has been heating the state capitol and other state buildings for more than 20 years. "The idea of trying this, seeing if it works, recognizing that it won't be the only solution to the problem, is a great idea," said William Schlesinger, president of the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies. Schlesinger said the use of the wood chips addressed the problem of the nation running out of liquid sources of petroleum, which is expensive and in short supply in this country. The expansion of the system will be paid for with an $8 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy, $7 million from the state and $1 million from the Vermont Clean Energy Fund and the city bond issue.
Town in Massachusetts approves spending for new elementary
Residents of Marblehead, Massachusetts, have approved borrowing millions of dollars for a variety of projects in their town, including construction of a new Glover Elementary School. The new school will carry a price tag of $24.5 million. A similar school proposal last year was defeated by only 71 votes. "Everyone came together and they were willing to make the investment in our future," said Marblehead School Committee Chair Eurim Chun.
UK to transform loft apartment building for student art programs
The University of Kentucky has approved purchase of a loft apartment building to make space for student art programs. The University Lofts building next to the Lexington campus includes 100,000 square feet of usable space and would provide much more room than the aging Reynolds Building that now houses the art programs. Purchase of the building is expected to cost $6.7 million and the renovation costs will add another $8 million to the price. The university originally had budgeted $17 million and planned to upgrade and renovate the Reynolds Building.
|Other upcoming contracting opportunities|
Georgia county's library construction project totals $275 million
|John Szabo |
A $275 million construction program for Fulton County (Georgia) libraries will see eight new libraries built, half the costs paid for a new Central Library and consolidate, expand and renovate the remainder of the libraries in the county. Although the construction plan is on target, the county could have some issues on operational costs. Atlanta-Fulton libraries Director John Szabo said he is heartened by the fact that 65 percent of the voters supported the library plan during an economic slump, indicating they want better libraries, which serve residents from the very young to senior citizens. Officials already are aware they might have to institute some creative operational measures, from cutting back hours the facilities are open to seeking volunteer help and scheduling worker furloughs. Once the new facilities are built and others expanded, the county will operate 34 libraries. The additional 130,000 square feet will require more staff. And the bonds cover planning, construction and furnishing costs, but not operations. The first phase of the project calls for building eight new libraries and expanding two, at a cost of $167 million.
Massachusetts city plans to solicit support for $25.4 million CIP
Officials in Quincy, Massachusetts, are preparing to school the public on its proposed $25.4 million Capital Improvement Project (CIP). A Web site is planned to give information on anticipated start/finish dates, when the projects will be bid and provide updates on progress. Among the CIP projects are $10 million in drainage restoration, $5 million in seawall replacement, $3.5 million in street and sidewalk repair and $5 million in roofing and building renovations. Contracts could be awarded this month and most of the projects are expected to begin within a year. The city expects to seek some grant funding for flood-prone areas.
New Mexico area to benefit from $27 million in grants for housing
Grant funding totaling $27 million from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is on its way to the state of New Mexico and the City of Albuquerque. The funding will be used to help the state meet its housing needs for low-income citizens and the elderly. Funding will help low-income housing, but it also includes nearly $1 million for improvements at homeless shelters and $500,000 for programs to help low-income residents with AIDS maintain their homes.
Federal courthouse in Toledo to carry $96 million price tag
|James Carr |
The new contemporary-designed federal courthouse planned for Toledo, Ohio, will carry a price tag of $96 million. If the federal funding comes through, the courthouse will feature a contemporary look and according to U.S. District Judge James Carr, will be a "magnificent piece of architecture." One of the major concerns at the current courthouse, said Carr, is security. The new design will improve security for the facility. Because the old courthouse has only one entrance, prisoners must be moved through public areas and in public elevators. Although discussion on a new facility began in the late 1990s, Carr said nothing happened for about eight years. Then lack of funding put things off until 2007, when the project entered the design phase. Once the design is approved, officials will then hope to hear from the federal government regarding funding from a courthouse construction fund.
Two potential sites chosen for new North Lake Tahoe courthouse
The California State Public Works Board recently approved two possible sites for a new North Lake Tahoe courthouse. Now that potential sites have been determined, an environmental assessment of each site will be conducted, followed by site acquisition. All of those processes should be completed by August of next year. The architectural design can then continue on the $27.5 million facility. This new facility will replace the existing Tahoe City courthouse, which is too small and overcrowded. The new courthouse will solve security, access and efficiency problems while also meeting the parameters of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The proposed facility will provide a single courtroom with space for criminal, civil, traffic and family law proceedings for area residents and improvements in court security, operations and holding facilities.
County in New Mexico approves $6.3 million water treatment plant
Under executive order by the state to reduce arsenic levels in two of its wells, Dona Ana County officials in New Mexico have approved a $6.3 million water treatment plant. The 3.4-million-gallon-per-day plant is expected to be under construction in October, with a completion date 18 months later. County commissioners approved a $5.1 million loan-grant combination from the state to build the plant and a 2-million-gallon storage tank. Grant funds total $4.1 million of the total and $1 million is a loan. The county will make up the difference. Assistant County Manager Sue Padilla said the wells mostly serve industrial clients, but also serve an elementary school and an apartment complex. The new facility will also allow for serving additional customers in the future.
Expansion of Oregon city's water treatment scheduled in August
An expansion from eight million to 12 million gallons per day is the goal of expansion of the Bay Area's Pony Creek Water Treatment Plant in Coos Bay, Oregon. Construction is likely to begin in August and be completed by the end of next year. The project is being paid for by users of the treatment plant.
Federal funding made available for Illinois disaster recovery projects
Eighty-five communities in Illinois will benefit from $48 million in federal funds released for public infrastructure improvements as part of the recovery from Hurricane Ike in 2008. Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity Director Warren Ribley said the funds will be used to "help residents and businesses devastated by the 2008 storms get back on their feet and begin to rebuild." Illinois got $169 million in federal disaster funds after the storm to assist communities within 41 Illinois counties. Included among the projects that were funded are upgrades to water and sewer main lines, improvements to levees, pump stations, restorations of culverts, ditches, installation and/or replacement of emergency power generators.
Nevada's hospital computer system approved for connecting hospitals, records
The federal government has approved Nevada's plans for using more than $6.1 million in stimulus funding for a hospital computer system to connect hospitals so they can share medical records. The network will eventually connect all hospitals so doctors can securely share individuals' medical records with that individual's other doctors. The goal is a more efficient system that reduces costs and provides better health care.
Baltimore to conduct feasibility study on arena-convention-hotel project
The Maryland Stadium Authority will soon seek a firm to conduct a feasibility study on a $900 million plan to build a new arena with a hotel on top of it and an expansion of the Baltimore Convention Center. A Baltimore construction firm is willing to enter into a public-private partnership to finance the arena and hotel. Donald Fry, head of the Greater Baltimore Committee, said the convention center expansion could be paid for with city or state funds by issuing bonds.
|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 firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know about your previous job and where you are now. This week we feature Lee Feldman.
|Lee Feldman |
Lee Feldman earned his bachelor's degree in liberal arts from Washington and Lee University and his master's in government administration from the Fels Center of Government at the University of Pennsylvania. He has also completed the Senior Executive in State and Local Government Program at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. Feldman boasts a 25-year government career. He has served as an assistant to the city manager and assistant city manager in the city of North Miami Beach. He later was employed as deputy city manager in North Miami, beginning in 1989. He was ultimately promoted to city manager and served in that capacity from May 1996 to October 2002. In October 2002, he left North Miami to become city manager of the city of Palm Bay, Florida. He has served as a Vice President of the Southeast Region of the International City and County Management Association and has served as the President of the Florida City and County Management Association. He has also served in a variety of positions with the National League of Cities. Feldman was recently named city manager of the city of Fort Lauderdale.
|Opportunity of the week...|
The first phase of a $25-$30 million upgrade to a Georgia city's wastewater treatment plant is expected to begin in the fall. Officials are asking city council for authorization to advertise and accept bids for the first of three phases. The first phase is likely to cost approximately $6.25 million. Want to know more? Contact Reagan Weil at 512-531-3900 or email@example.com.
Arturo Delgado (top left), superintendent of the San Bernardino City Unified School District, has been named superintendent of the Los Angeles County Office of Education to lead the 27,000-student district. U.S. Attorney Beth Phillips (top middle) has been nominated by President Barack Obama for a federal judgeship and if confirmed, will serve on the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri. Bruce Hopson (top right), who owns his own law practice in St. Louis and has practiced law for nearly 20 years, was recently installed as president of the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis for its 2011-2012 bar year. Mark Winson, vice president-finance and administration for Lake Superior College in Duluth, Minnesota, and former chief administrative officer for the city of Duluth, has been selected as assistant city manager and chief administrative officer for the city of Las Cruces, New Mexico. Nancy Weed, a part-time guidance councilor for elementary schools in Penobscot, Brooksville and Surry, Maine, has been chosen school superintendent for the Milford, Maine, school district, succeeding Dr. John Davis, who was dismissed at the end of December. Wendy LaDue, coordinator of instruction, professional learning and innovation for San Juan Unified school district, will be the new superintendent and principal of the Gold Oak Union School District
in Placerville, California. Michael F. King (middle right), director of special programs with the Longview (Texas) Independent School District, has been named lone finalist for the superintendent post in the Bridge City ISD. Debra Wanser, (middle center) who has more than 30 years of health care administration experience and has served as acting commissioner of the Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services, has been named commissioner of the agency. Maj. Gen. Kevin McBride (middle left), who currently serves as commander of the U.S. Army North's Contingency Command Post 1 at Fort Sam Houston in Texas, has been named the next adjutant general for the State of Rhode Island. Firebaugh City Manager Jose Antonio Ramirez has been appointed city manager of the city of Livingston, California, replacing interim city manager Vickie Lewis, who is retiring July 15. Ypsilanti, California, Assistant City Manager April McGrath is leaving that job to become city manager in Ferndale. Alameda City Manager John Russo has appointed Alameda police officer Mike Noonan, who has served as interim head of the Alameda Police Department since July of last year, as the new chief, replacing Walt Tibbet, who left to become chief of the Fairfield Police Department. Carolyn "Biddy" Martin (bottom left), chancellor of the
University of Wisconsin-Madison since 2008, is leaving that charge at the end of the summer to become the new president of Amherst College in Massachusetts. Former Nevada Budget Director Andrew Clinger (bottom center) has begun his new job as city manager of Reno, Nevada, after his position with the state ended when the state legislature adjourned. Shelton Rhodes (bottom right), founding dean of the Howard S. Brown School of Business and Leadership at Stevenson University in Baltimore, retired major in the U.S. Army and former owner of a management consulting firm, is the new dean of the business college at Delaware State University. Dr. Lori Gonzalez, former dean of the College of Health Sciences at the University of Kentucky, has been selected to serve as provost and executive vice chancellor of Appalachian State University. Tim Chapa, who has spent 16 years in city government with Fresno and Sanger, is the new city manager for the city of Arvin, California. Michael "Shane" Phillips, current chief of the Seneca Fire Department in South Carolina, will leave that job to become fire chief for the city of Orange Beach, Alabama, replacing Forney Howard, who is retiring after seven years as chief.
|Let us help advertise your event on our calendar|
Does your organization or agency have an upcoming event that would be of interest to either vendors who do business with government or officials and workers in state and local government, higher education, public education or health care? Are you planning a webinar? A conference or seminar? The State & Local Government Pipeline invites government and nonprofits to send information regarding your events for consideration to be included in our FREE Calendar of Events section below. In addition to providing contact information, the day, date, time and a synopsis of the event, you may also include a link to additional information on your Web page and/or a link to online registration that we'll include. Please submit your event information to firstname.lastname@example.org.
|Calendar of events|
National Small Business Conference set for August
The National Veteran Small Business Conference is planned for Aug. 15-18, at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans. Billed as the largest nationwide conference of its kid, it provides veteran-owned (VOSBs) and service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses (SDVOSBs) an opportunity to learn, network and market their businesses. Those who should attend include VOSBs and SDVOSBs seeking an edge on the competition in the federal government marketplace, along with prime contractors seeking VOSB and SDVOSB partners and federal government representatives who promote both through contracting opportunities. For more information, click here
Partnerships workshop to be held in Illinois on June 24
"It's Not Privatization: Implementing Partnerships In Illinois," a one-day program sponsored by Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce and the National Council for Public-Private Partnerships is slated for Friday, June 24, at the Hyatt Lodge in Oak Brook, Illinois. The event will begin with registration at 7:30 a.m. Among the topics for the workshop include The Framework of Public-Private Partnerships vs. Privatization, Illinois Environment for Infrastructures, Financing Tools Available Through Partnerships and more. To view the agenda and registration information, click here.
TxDOT San Antonio Small Business Briefing conference set 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 small businesses doing business with the agency. For more information, click here.
Texas procurement seminar for HUBs slated for June 27
The 2011 Texas Procurement Connection Seminar and EXPOs prepare Historically Underutilized Businesses (HUBs) the opportunity to meet with state purchasers. This year's seminar, slated for Monday, June 27, will be at the Crowne Plaza, Austin. Nearly 20 Texas state agencies will participate. The seminar will include workshops providing vendors guidance and training on the state government purchasing process. There will also be panels of agency and university purchasing representatives providing information from their agencies' perspectives. Vendors will have the opportunity to network with state purchasers to discuss how to secure state business. For more information, click here.
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