Volume 9, Issue 20 - May 17, 2017
Lots of opportunities here...
Mary Scott Nabers, President/CEO, Strategic Partnerships, Inc.
Who doesn't love a great sports event? Large crowds, jubilant fans, media coverage, economic opportunities for lots of stakeholders - public officials and the public at large all find much to like!!  

As a result, universities, school districts and municipalities are now spending billions to build new athletic facilities or renovate and modernize existing ones. That's creating an abundance of opportunities for construction, engineering and architectural firms. Additionally, technology, landscaping, equipment, legal and investment firms are also enjoying high demand for their services.  

The impetus for all the construction is simple - competition is extreme and sport fans want to frequent facilities that are easy to access, comfortable and safe. Old facilities are inefficient and costly to maintain. They lack the latest security technology, flashy scoreboards, video capabilities, easy access to amenities and state-of-the-art security. 

Public-private partnerships related to athletic facilities have become attractive options because they bring capital investment in the expensive projects.

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A hole in the ground can be a bad thing for rolling wheels and moving feet. These burrows, potholes, divots, manholes, ground tunnels and ditches could cause issues if they are overlooked, but when the earth suddenly gives way and a large land-mass collapses, the level of danger and damage can be much more detrimental and harder to avoid. These sinking sensations are called sinkholes and they can happen naturally or with help from humans. The cost of repair can run into the millions for states, cities and counties. 

A natural sinkhole occurs in "karst terrain," which means the type of rock, called evaporites, below the land surface can naturally be dissolved by groundwater circulating through them. When rain water moves down through the soil, these types of rock begin to dissolve and spaces and caverns develop underground. When a sinkhole occurs, it is normally massive because the land will stay intact for a period of time until the underground spaces get too big and there is not enough support anymore for the top layer of land. The ground could collapse suddenly or cave in gradually over time. Sinkholes occur more frequently after intense rainfall, but there is some evidence that drought can cause this phenomenon. Areas where water levels have lowered suddenly are more prone to collapse formation.

Mary Scott Nabers, president and CEO of Strategic Partnerships, Inc. (SPI) and a nationally recognized expert in public-private partnerships (P3s/PPPs), will serve as facilitator of a Public-Private Partnership Workshop at the upcoming Smart Cities CONNECT Conference and Expo. At the June 25-28 event in Austin, Nabers' workshop will address "Financing Smart City Projects - What you need to know about Public-Private Partnerships and Alternative Funding Options." Nabers will be joined by the Association for the Improvement of American Infrastructure (AIAI) and many recognized experts with experience in all the various aspects of P3s. Participants will be attending from throughout the United States.

"The population explosion in many areas of the United States has created a growing interest in public-private partnerships as municipalities face escalating demands for public services, from energy solutions and cyber security to water and waste management," said Nabers. "This workshop is designed to introduce city officials to P3s as an alternative method for financing many of those projects." 

Nabers will facilitate a variety of panel discussions relating to P3s, including the various P3 models being used successfully, how and when to get started on a P3 project, how to ensure a successful project while maintaining community support and a discussion on best practices. Some of the other presenters at the afternoon event will include: 

Upcoming contracting opportunities

California- San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee announced that the city will set aside $44 million in city funding for a teacher housing project in the city's Sunset District and will be issuing a request for proposals as soon as possible. The $44 million will be coming from the city's Housing Trust Fund and Proposition A housing funds. The project has been in the works for a while as city and school district officials have been attempting to combat the housing affordability crisis that has made it difficult to hire and retain teachers. 

The housing project will include about 135 units for teachers and paraprofessionals and will be built on a site owned by the school district, meaning that the project will require approval by the district board. In addition to the city funds, federal tax credits for affordable housing projects will be utilized, although it will complicate the process. The complication comes from the fact that the use of federal tax credits has led to the income level requirements for housing projects to be so low in cities like Los Angeles that few teachers qualified for them. However, contributions from the city will allow the district to offer units to employees who make more than the low federal income limits, at a maximum of 60 percent of area median income.
New York/New Jersey- Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced last week that the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey had issued a $35 million request for proposals (RFP) to carry out an environmental impact study on the Cross Harbor Freight Initiative. The initiative calls for plans to construct a rail tunnel beneath the New York Harbor. The project could cost upwards of $11 billion according to the Port Authority. The plan would use the Fresh Pond Rail Yard in Glendale as an intermodal terminal where the freight would be moved from trains to trucks and then delivered to its final destination. 

An environmental impact study conducted in 2015 found that the tunnel would result in a reduction of up to 1,800 trucks per day across all bridges crossing the harbor and Hudson River, and would create over 12,000 jobs. Cuomo stated that last year 14 million trucks came into the New York City area with freight. The study will be expedited for completion to occur within 12 to 18 months and will also explore enhancing the existing waterborne operation where rail cars are floated across the harbor on barges.
Oregon- On Tuesday, Salem voters approved a $61.8 million bond to build a new police facility. The city now has plans to send out a request for proposals for assistance with a design for the new, 115,000 square-foot headquarters. The city is hoping this process will take between 90 and 120 days. The plan is for the new facility to have enough room for a crime lab, secure storage lots for S.W.A.T. and bomb team vehicles and equipment. The police station will also have enough room for a growing police force to support a steadily increasing population in the city. In November, voters turned down an $82 million bond for a 148,000-square-foot police facility.
Michigan- Michigan Chief Information Officer David Behen announced the state's plans to issue a request for proposals (RFP) for a Cyber Threat Analytics Center. Through the facility, the state hopes to be able to utilize predictive analytics on data from both the past and present to prevent future attacks. The state will collect its data from logs of firewalls, security appliances, intrusion detection devices and other systems within the state government's network. 

In addition, with the new center, it is hoped that data collection will be expanded beyond government to other critical areas like finance and utilities. These industries would have to provide access to their data in exchange for the state's playbook on responding to cyber-attacks. The new entity will operate separately from the Michigan Intelligence Operations Center, which is currently used by the state police to gather evidence for investigations. The state is still looking for funding for the project and an RFP will most likely be issued next fiscal year.
New York- A former medical-waste disposal plant, junkyard, factory and other vacant buildings are available for redevelopment through a request for proposals by the Suffolk County Landbank. There are nine tax-delinquent properties with histories of environmental contamination in the towns of Babylon, Brookhaven and Islip included in the RFP. The nonprofit corporation sells discounted liens to get dilapidated buildings back in shape and back on tax rolls. The properties are located at the following locations: 

753 Long Island Ave., Deer Park                 95 Eads St., West Babylon 

1200 Montauk Hwy., Copiague                    305 S. Strong Ave., Copiague 

415 Munsell Rd., East Patchogue                1600 5th Ave., Bay Shore 

8 Drayton Ave., Bay Shore                           156 Grant Ave., Islip 

405 Lakeview Ave., Bayport

News about public-private partnerships (P3s)

Ohio- In an attempt to revivify neighborhoods around Cleveland where traditional investment models have fallen short, Mayor Frank Jackson is targeting $65 million of public and private funds towards commercial development, residential development and renovation. The funds will also target programs that help homeowners make down payments and manage their homes as investments in hopes of prompting private investment and economic development within the neighborhoods. 

The city will invest $25 million in the plan, which comes from a $100 million bond issue from two years ago that has been set aside for neighborhood development and revitalization. The funds will be allocated based on a study out of Cleveland State University about neighborhood vitality that shows that neighborhood amenities, but not necessarily proximate job growth, create vibrant communities. The project has been in the works for over a year and has the support of four major banks, the Cleveland Foundation and numerous other organizations that have committed to private investments in the target neighborhoods.
Kentucky- The Finance and Administration Cabinet of Kentucky is soliciting bids from private individuals to manage the demolition and new construction scheduled to take place in downtown Frankfort. The demolition project, which covers 8 acres at the corner of Wilkinson and Mero streets, involves leveling the Capital Plaza Tower, the Frankfort Convention Center, the Fountain Place Shops as well as two parking garages. These structures will be replaced with a five-story office building and parking garage that will serve 1,500 state employees. 

This proposal is coming after the Tower, which houses the utilities for the convention center, was labeled as surplus property and put to auction earlier this year. Though the convention center and Capital Plaza Tower were used extensively by the community, as well as different state agencies, the buildings were in disrepair and would have been extremely costly to renovate. There are no current plans for how to replace the convention center, but demolition and construction projects are due to take place later this year. A request for proposals is due by 10:30 a.m. on May 31.
California-The Coalition for Transportation Technology - made up of the California Department of Transportation, the Los Angeles Department of Transportation, the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works, the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority and Southern California Association of Governments - is releasing a request for interest (RFI) to test the curiosity level from private companies for opportunities regarding advanced transportation technologies and opportunities. 

These opportunities include intelligent transportation systems, connected vehicles, automated/autonomous vehicles, vehicle-to-everything and data analytics. The coalition is looking to incorporate these technologies into individual passenger vehicles, transit and freight as well as using these technologies to meet its near/mid/long-term goals in its Strategic Action Plan. This RFI is issued for information purposes only and a separate request for proposals may be released later.
New York- The Rapp Road Landfill that services Albany is nearing maximum capacity after years of prolonging its use through horizontal and vertical expansion. Closing this landmass will cost the city $20 million and is projected to take place in 2023. Currently, the citizens of Albany do not pay trash or recycling collection service fees but the imminent landfill closure will likely cause that to change. Pay-As-You-Throw programs have been suggested as a new way to handle the expense of the closure process. 

Programs utilizing automated, semi-automated and manual means to increase the efficiency of recycling have also been suggested. In addition to piloting programs, this month the city put out a request for proposals (RFP) for a transfer station to be created no later than 2020 that could take on excess waste from the Rapp Road Landfill. The transfer station would ideally provide economic opportunities, waste reduction and diversion improvements to recycling, and demonstrate a long-term commitment to the community. The Sanitation Services with the Department of General Services that put out the RFP are not committed to a transfer station and would accept proposals about incinerators as well. The department is not making any decisions without opening discussion to the community of Albany.
Wisconsin- Senate Bill 95, known in Wisconsin as the "Aquaculture Bill," is making its way through the Legislative Session and aims to reduce inconsistent regulations within the fish farming industry. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Mary Felzkowski, will allow access to appropriate genetic strains of fish and fish eggs to strengthen a successful public-private partnership between private fish farms and state fish hatcheries. The measure will also reduce the number of permits needed to build or repair fish farm facilities. 

Wisconsin has a $21 million aquaculture industry with an estimated 2,800 private fish farms throughout the state that support about 500 jobs. Supporters of the bill say that Wisconsin has a substantial deficit in the amount of fish and seafood that is provided from local fisheries compared to what is consumed. The bill will help the aquaculture industry grow to more greatly meet the demand for seafood across the state. It will also promote rural economic development by allowing the industry to expand and grow in order to compete on the national level. Currently, 86 percent of U.S. seafood consumption is imported, leading to a seafood trade deficit of $10 billion.
Calendar of Events 

June 18-20
SelectUSA Investment Summit will be held June 18-20 at the Gaylord Hotel - National Harbor in Washington, D.C. During the event, Strategic Partnerships, Inc. (SPI), with assistance from the Association for the Improvement of American Infrastructure (AIAI) will facilitate a 3-hour symposium covering the basics of Public-Private Partnerships. Experts from throughout the U.S. will be on hand to provide hands-on assistance to attendees. 
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