Volume 10, Issue 45- Wednesday, November 14, 2018
Mary Scott Nabers, President/CEO, Strategic Partnerships, Inc.
The United States ranks number one in the world for health care spending as a percentage of GDP. That sounds great... but, Texas ranks only 11th worldwide when it comes to performance. That's because of "access to care." 

The country's health care rankings are likely to get worse as 673 rural hospitals in the U.S. are at risk of closing. Here's what has happened - the need for care greatly outpaces available funding, especially for public hospitals. Something must be done. 

If public funding is no longer available, alternative funding can be secured in numerous ways. The simplest way to access alternative funding is through a public-private partnership (P3) engagement. However, alternative funding for public hospitals, health care clinics and university medical centers can be found from other sources as well. Finding funding is not a problem when private-sector investors, large equity funds, pension programs, asset recycling and EB5 programs all stand ready to invest in public-sector projects. 

Moving to a P3 health care model would allow hospitals to secure immediate funding, utilize private-sector expertise and best practices while transferring all risks. The launch of health care P3s would also ensure new construction, new jobs and hundreds of additional health care options for people. 

In 2017, there were 5,564 registered hospitals in the U.S and 956 of them were owned by state and local governments. The 80 rural U.S. hospitals that closed during the last six years left many families without health care options. Those people were forced to seek treatment elsewhere or go without health care services. 

Some rural health advocates are pushing for a new type of partnership - one that combines emergency and primary care in one facility. They believe that consolidating those services would reduce costs significantly. Chances are that other innovative changes are in the winds.

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North Carolina- Wake County voters approved more than $1.1 billion in bonds for new school construction and park projects. County officials stated that the new bonds will help the county with more economic development opportunities and make the area a greater attraction for businesses. Broken down, $548 million will be used for the Wake County school system on new construction projects, including seven new schools, 11 major renovations and upgrades to security and computers. Voters could be asked to decide on another school bond referendum as soon as 2020 since county leaders opted to go with two smaller referenda rather than one large one this year. 

Another $349.1 million will be used to construct new buildings and provide repairs and accessibility upgrades for Wake Technical Community College. Some of those new buildings include a health science building, a public safety simulation building, an auto and collision repair facility and a 1,200-space parking garage for its Research Triangle Park campus. Additionally, $120 million in bond money was approved for parks, open space and recreation construction in the county. The parks bond would go toward acquiring 1,800 acres for future parks and open space, building 15 miles of greenways and renovating existing parks. Those renovations could range from small projects like adding new benches to larger projects like adding a nature or education center.
Virginia- The Montgomery County school division has agreed to issue proposals for the replacement of Belview Elementary School and the renovation and expansion of Christianburg High School. The board recently voted to advertise both multi-million-dollar opportunities after receiving an unsolicited proposal from a developer. The plan calls for an estimated $110 million worth of work that would build a 750-student capacity elementary school and expand Christiansburg High's capacity to 1,400 students. 

The developer submitted the proposal for two schools under the state's Public-Private Education Facilities and Infrastructure Act of 2002, a law that aims to soften the burden of infrastructure projects on governments by using private firms. The two sites stand as the highest priority long-range capital plan projects, yet the division cannot take on any more debt until 2020. One possibility is a nonprofit being formed to take over the development and then leasing the facilities back to the two schools. Talks of such a lease have pointed to a multi-decade lifespan.
New Jersey- Voters approved a statewide ballot question asking if they supported the Securing Our Children's Future Act, a $500 million bond to expand vocational schools and bolster security in K-12 school districts. The measure also includes funding for community colleges and improving school water systems. Debt from the bond will be serviced through New Jersey's sales tax collections. 

The majority of the bond, $350 million, will go to vocational schools and security. Career and technical schools need to expand to serve more students. For every seat at the schools, there are 2.3 applications, and last year 17,000 students were turned away. Another $100 million will be used to remove lead from water infrastructure in K-12 schools and $50 million will go to state community colleges.
Massachusetts- The city of Worcester next month plans to issue a request for qualifications (RFQ) for a construction manager for a new minor league ballpark. Last week, the Worcester Redevelopment Authority hired an architect to develop a schematic design for the project. The ballpark will be built in the Canal District/Kelley Square area of town and will be home to the AAA Worcester Red Sox, an affiliate of the Boston Red Sox. 

The 10,000-seat ballpark is part of a larger $240 million redevelopment of the area. City officials stated they have received permission from the state's Inspector General's Office to use a construction manager at risk delivery method for the project. After the initial RFQ, a request for proposals is expected in January with construction slated to start in July and completed by the 2021 baseball season.
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Vermont- In Burlington, the University of Vermont Board (UVM) of Trustees unanimously approved a resolution for a multi-purpose facility project for the Athletic Department. The project includes a renovation of the historic Gutterson Fieldhouse and the construction of a new events center that will serve as the home for the Catamount men's and women's basketball teams while also hosting a variety of campus and public events. 

There will also be major upgrades to health, wellness and recreation. The project will be completed in stages throughout the 2020-21 academic year. The total project cost is anticipated to be $95 million, which will be funded through a combination of private philanthropic gifts and other institutional sources.
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North Carolina- The Alamance-Burlington School System's $150 million bond issue passed during last week's bond election. Broken down, $80 million will fund renovations and additions at the district's six high schools and Pleasant Grove and South Mebane Elementary Schools. The other $70 million will build a new high school in the eastern portion of the county. School system officials plan to publish a request for qualifications in the next few days for an architectural design firm. Responses are due after winter break and a design team is expected to be chosen by late February or early March. The plan is to break ground in 2020 on a new high school, placing the projected opening date in the fall of 2020 at the earliest. 

Alamance Community College also received approval from voters for its $39.6 million bond issue. The money is slated to build a new Biotechnology Center of Excellence, Public Safety Training Center, Student Services Learning and Development Center and 400-space multilevel parking deck. College personnel now plan to begin the bidding process for architecture and construction firms as well as collaborating with experts in the fields of public safety and life sciences to get their input on how the bond issue's two largest projects - the Biotechnology Center of Excellence and Public Safety Training Center - should be constructed.
Salton Sea
California- The Salton Sea continues to shrink, but while the waters recede the problems continue to flood in. The previously submerged lake bed (referred to as "playa") is creating dust that can be hazardous when it becomes airborne. Officials have created a 10-year plan to address air quality and environmental threats from the Salton Sea. The plan was initially funded by the approval of Proposition 1 in 2014 and an additional voter approved $200 million dollars this past June. Phase one of the plan focuses on creating wetlands and other projects to suppress the dust and create new habitats. 

An agreement reached by the California Water Resources Control Board last November painted a shared vision among the state, water agencies and environmental organizations for projects and activities over the next 10 years. The California Department of Water Resources is refining its organizational structure to put new resources and expertise in place to centralize and accelerate the design and implementation of critical dust-suppression and habitat projects. A request for qualifications will be issued before the end of 2018 for a project to create deep habitat on the sea's southern end to support fish and wildlife.
Michigan- The Marquette County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously to approve both airport operations agreements and an updated version of the airport minimum standards. The fixed base operator (FBO) limited service agreement at Sawyer International Airport and building leases were set to expire at the end of this coming February, and the new agreement extends the term of the contract six months beyond that date. 

The extension was requested because county staff is currently in the process of developing a request for qualifications (RFQ) for FBOs at the airport, but because the county has not completed this process for FBO services in the past, the development of an RFQ is taking longer than anticipated. The board is taking their time putting together a new RFQ in order to craft a comprehensive package that will satisfy all requirements of the Federal Aviation Administration.
Courtesy photo: City of Troy 
One Monument Square rendering
New York- The city of Troy has hosted a community meeting to unveil conceptual designs and renderings for the 1-acre One Monument Square and Riverfront Esplanade site, the fifth concept for the site in the last decade. City officials would like the riverfront plan to serve as a year-round, multi-use public plaza for life, work and play. The initial design includes elements for a civic space for events such as a farmer's market and summer concerts. 

The city is faced with the reality that the funds to develop the riverfront are not in its budget and acknowledge that a public-private partnership (P3) is a distinct possibility. To finance the project, the city will look to make use of existing grants and explore new state and county funding, as well as seek private partners. The riverfront area has also prompted discussion of a two-level parking structure with around 160 spots, an elevator to make the site more accessible and a grand stairway connection. The project remains in the preliminary phase.
Courtesy photo: City of Boulder
 Harbeck-Bergheim House
Colorado- The city of Boulder is exploring new uses and ownership options for the historic Harbeck-Bergheim House. Until this year, the Harbeck-Bergheim House has served as the Museum of Boulder after being acquired by the city in 1979. The home is estimated at a value of more than $3 million and the city spends roughly $47,000 in annual upkeep. 

Boulder officials are now weighing selling, leasing or owning and operating the house as potential options for the now vacated property. Currently, the city is engaging in a multi-phase process to assess its options by collecting community input and gauging interest. Boulder officials have also mentioned a public-private partnership as an option, but no decision is expected until mid-2019.
Kentucky- Bowling Green is looking for someone to potentially lease the city-owned Golf Course at Riverview. While the city prefers that the course continue to be used for a golf-related function, other uses would be considered. This nine-hole course has received the least amount of revenue compared to the city's other two courses. 

The city will issue a request for proposals from anyone interested in leasing all or a portion of the 80-acre golf course. If the course doesn't lease, a decision will have to be made in 2019 about the course's future. The Riverview course remains open until it closes for the winter next month.
Georgia- The city of Brookhaven recently approved a $40 million parks bond referendum with over 60 percent of the vote. Six of the city's parks will be subject to capital improvement projects that are to be managed by a program manager. Money from the parks bond will fund the following projects: Ashford Park, $1.94 million; Blackburn Park, $1.3 million; Briarwood Park, $7 million; Brookhaven Park, $6 million; Lynwood Park, $11 million; Murphey Candler Park, $8.98 million; and system wide funding for security, maintenance and invasive plant removal, among other things, $3.47 million. 

Expect a request for proposals to be issued in the coming months for a program manager to oversee all the parks projects. The city will also pursue the purchase of the front portion of Brookhaven Park from DeKalb County, a move that has been long-awaited since the city took ownership of the back half of the property last year.
Louisiana- State Senator Rick Ward sponsored legislation passed this year that allows a five-parish coalition to build a third bridge in or near Iberville parish - without waiting for the state. The New Bridge PAC (political action committee) will survey the public and collect data about what exactly voters would support. It will also try to drum up support from private companies. The plan is to incorporate a public-private partnership and this proposal could be voted on as soon as the spring. 

The Capital Area Road and Bridge District plans to hold their first meeting next month. The authority was created from the legislation and is made up of parish presidents from West Baton Rouge, East Baton Rouge, Ascension, Livingston and Iberville, along with the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development secretary and the governor's appointee. If all goes according to plan, the new bridge could become a reality in seven to 10 years. The need for a new bridge was brought on after the recent closure of the Sunshine Bridge, which sits on a sliver of St. James Parish land that bisects Ascension Parish. The bridge's closure has exacerbated the region's traffic issues, making it all the more important to find a way to build a new bridge in the area. 
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Alabama- The city of Birmingham wants to begin an on-demand microtransit pilot program and is looking for a public-private partnership. The vehicles must carry at least six passengers at once, must be accessible without a smartphone, must operate within the entire city limits and provide wait times not to exceed 15 minutes. Birmingham is the largest city in Alabama with a population of 212,000 and a metro of 1.1 million. The city seeks to reduce its automobile dependency. Elected leadership recognizes that accomplishing daily tasks without a private vehicle is extraordinarily difficult-especially for the 29 percent of Birmingham residents who are living in poverty. 

A designee will assist the city with management of the microtransit system and provide monthly reports and evaluations to monitor performance of the program. The vendor must accept and work with any third-party service providers that the city may need to contract to improve the city-owned microtransit service. The vendor must employ a local manager or management team to work with the city in the administration and development of microtransit services. The pilot project should be deployed by Jan. 31. A request for proposals is due by Nov. 26.
Colorado- The city of Breckenridge wants to fill the role of "fiber infrastructure provider" by developing a dark fiber network that will extend to all premises citywide. Breckenridge's year-round population is only around 5,000, but visitors can make that number swell as high as 36,000 people. In addition to putting significant stress on wired Internet access in the mountain town, mobile service is overtaxed. The city hopes to use fiber to improve cell service for visitors in addition to smart city applications and niche services, such as home security, telehealth and other possibilities. 

The city will deploy the network in two phases with phase 1 scheduled for completion in 2021. The focus will be to connect approximately 1,000 to 2,000 end users by the first year. While Breckenridge doesn't have cost estimates for phase 2, they have determined that phase 1 should run around $8 million. Responses to the request for information are due by Nov. 26.
Michigan- The Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority (DDA) has announced a $745,000 allotment to support the development of affordable housing on the Y Lot, the library's property at 343 S. Fifth Ave. and the Blake Transit Center on South Fifth Avenue. The city is studying potential uses for the 0.8-acre space and has proposed three options: pursuing public-private partnerships (P3) to create a mixed-use development including affordable housing; a private mixed-use development that would include affordable housing; or mixed-income housing only. 

The DDA previously spent $1.5 million demolishing the existing building on the site. The preliminary outline for the P3 would include the city, Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority, Ann Arbor District Library and DDA to create 100 to 200 units of affordable housing and space for community events and meetings.
Georgia- Sandy Springs, a city that pioneered the use of outside contractors for government services when it was incorporated in 2005, announced it will seek qualified companies under a new round of requests for proposals (RFP) this winter. The city will solicit bids in the areas of call center, communications, community development, facilities, finance, information services and public works/Transportation Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (TSPLOST) services. Proposals will be due to the city by Jan. 31. 

With more than 106,000 residents, Sandy Springs is the second-largest city in the metro Atlanta area. Its public-private partnership (P3) model entails hiring contractors to do the work most other municipalities handle in-house. 

Nov. 27 and 28
The Public-Private Partnership (P3) Federal Conference takes place Nov. 27 and 28 at the Marriott Marquis, 901 Massachusetts Ave. NW, Washington, D.C. With keynotes, case studies, panels, workshops, and diverse networking opportunities, conference attendees will deepen their understanding on the key principles behind P3s and other alternative delivery methods, and the role they can play in delivering essential transportation, health, defense, social and water infrastructure projects. Check out this packed, two-day agenda and join more than 800 attendees for this national conversation on P3 project delivery. Register for the event here

Join President and CEO of Strategic Partnerships, Inc. Mary Scott Nabers on Nov. 27 from 7:30-9 a.m. for a pre-conference session P3 101 Breakfast. Nabers along with other panelists will provide interactive conversation specifically tailored to the needs of agencies that are evaluating P3s. Learn about when P3s do and do not make sense to advance, what are the major considerations that need to be made when choosing this route, how can they can save money and time when dealing with repairs and maintenance, and what are some of the first steps to make when considering the P3 route.  

From 11 a.m.-12:15 p.m., join Nabers at table four of the Interactive Roundtable Discussions in the Expo Hall. Nabers will be presenting Messaging and Community Engagement is not an Afterthought. This roundtable is focused on the "how" and will address stakeholder relationship concerns for staff level public officials charged with launching and managing P3's. Find out why including stakeholders early in the public planning process allows for successful community engagement and can facilitate P3 initiatives with public participation, media support and elect official buy-in. We will examine how both the public and private partners can approach the dialogue with the media, partners, and community shareholders for the best chance at a win-win-win solution for public owners, private partners, and the community.
March 4-6
The P3C Public-Private Partnership (P3) Conference & Expo will be held March 4-6 at the Sheraton Dallas Hotel, 400 North Olive St., Dallas, Texas. Register for the event here

Join over 1,250 senior representatives from governments, higher education institutions and leading firms in the global construction and financial markets. The conference attracts professionals from all corners of the industry and provides a valuable opportunity to facilitate new partnerships with industry peers and public sector partners. Attendees will discover new alternative project delivery methods, strategies for implementing successful P3 projects, the nuts and bolts of how deals work, and how to manage risks associated with legal and financial frameworks. 

Attendees will participate in interactive panels, workshops, and conversations specifically tailored to the needs of public agencies evaluating P3s. The conference is designed for all levels in the market including those beginning to explore P3s and seeking to better understand where alternative and accelerated project delivery methods can be applicable.

- Ana Cortez, currently the assistant city manager and interim finance director in Yakima, Wash., has been chosen as the city manager of Helena. Cortez will replace Ron Alles, who was the city manager from September 2009 until his retirement in June of this year. Dennis Taylor, who previously served as city manager from 1999 to 2001, has filled Alles' position on an interim basis since his retirement. 
- Shawn Robinson, president of Hillsborough Community College's Ybor City campus since 2007, is stepping down to return to teaching. He will relocate to the college's Brandon campus at the end of the year to join the mathematics faculty. A replacement for Robinson has not yet been announced. Prior to joining the college he served as a mathematics professor, library director, academic assistant to the provost, and dean of Social Sciences and Physical Education at Valencia Community College in Orlando, Fla. 
- Greg Minor has been appointed the city of Palm Bay facilities director. He has more than 20 years of experience working for Brevard County and most recently served as the South Area Parks operations manager where he oversaw facilities management and construction. He began his new role Nov. 5. The city of Palm Bay Facilities Department is responsible for the maintenance, construction, renovation and emergency repair of the city's 58 existing buildings and facilities. 
- The Bethlehem Chamber of Commerce has chosen Maureen McGuinness as its new president, replacing Jennifer Kilcoyne who left in late August. McGuinness, who took office on Nov. 5., was previously at the Rensselaer County Regional Chamber of Commerce as its membership manager since February 2015 and its Economic Advancement and Member Relations manager since this past April. 
- Joshua Shaklee has replaced Keith Cubic as the planning director for Douglas County. Shaklee was first hired as a planning manager with Douglas County in June of 2017. Cubic is retiring after more than 47 years working for the county. He became the assistant planning director in 1974, taking the planning director role in 1976. 
- The Pentagon's third-highest ranking official, John "Jay" Gibson, has announced his resignation. Gibson, the Defense Department's chief management officer (CMO), will leave his position on Nov. 30. He will be replaced on an acting basis by Lisa Hershman, the deputy CMO. Gibson has held the position since February, when he became the department's first-ever CMO. Congress created the position in the 2017 defense authorization bill and made it the third most senior position in the department, behind the secretary and deputy secretary. 
- The Bureau of Land Management has a new director in Colorado. Jamie Connell, who previously worked in Colorado, will be returning to the state to serve as the agency's state director. Connell currently is serving as the Oregon-Washington state director. Connell is replacing acting Colorado state director Greg Shoop, who will resume his work as associate state director. The former state director, Ruth Welch, was reassigned by the Department of Interior to the Bureau of Reclamation in 2017. 
- El Dorado County recently appointed Tiffany Schmid as its new planning and building director. Schmid took the place of Roger Trout who retired. Schmid has worked for El Dorado County since 2014, most recently as a principal management analyst in the Chief Administrative Office. 
- On Nov. 9 Jack Buono replaced Rear Adm. James Helis as the superintendent of the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point. Buono most recently served as the president and CEO of an oil company's shipping subsidiary. Buono's appointment follows Helis accepting a position as special assistant to Mark Buzby, the head of the Maritime Administration, the U.S. Department of Transportation agency tasked with overseeing the academy.  
- Shreveport Police Chief Alan Crump is retiring. His resignation will go into effect Nov. 15, 2018. Crump began his career with the Shreveport Police Department in 1992. He became the interim chief in July of 2016 and was later named to the permanent position. 
- George Crater has been hired to oversee operations at Mount Airy-Surry County Airport on behalf of the county government. Crater has been employed as planning director with the town of Elkin since 2006, a role including responsibility for management and oversight of the Elkin Municipal Airport. Traditionally, the management of the airport has been contracted out to a third party, a fixed-based operator. 
- Cobb County's elected officials have approved Erica Parish as the permanent director of transportation. Parish was serving as interim director after Jim Wilgus left in April. Parish came to Cobb in 2016 from the Paulding County Transportation Department, where she was their pre-construction manager. Cobb County is the Georgia's third most populated county with three-quarters of a million residents. 
- Battalion Chief Randy Adams has been selected as the new chief of the Wayne Township Fire Department. Adams will take over the role of fire chief from Gene Konzen on Jan. 1, 2019. Adams is a 35-year veteran of the Wayne Township Fire Department. He has served in several positions within the department, most recently in the role of shift commander. An interim chief will be decided upon next week. A search will also be conducted to find a new police chief for the city. The interim chief will initially be appointed for 90 days. 
- Metropolitan Transportation Authority Chairman Joe Lhota has resigned. Lhota is stepping down from public service after two terms as head of the MTA and decades of work at the highest levels of government. MTA Vice Chairman Fernando Ferrer will serve as acting chair while officials prepare to name a permanent replacement when the Senate returns in January. Lhota first served as MTA chairman in 2011. He resigned in 2012, when he ran for New York City mayor and lost to Bill de Blasio, but returned to the MTA in June 2017. 
- Michael Sullivan has been hired as the assistant director of the Office of Private Sector for the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI). In this position, Sullivan oversees the FBI's efforts to strengthen partnerships with the U.S. private sector. Sullivan comes to the FBI with experience gained in a professional career that has spanned 38 years in law enforcement and private sector security.
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