Volume 11, Issue 40 - Wednesday, October 9, 2019
California - Gov. Gavin Newsom signed the largest school construction bond in the state's history October 7 to put a $15 billion bond to vote next year.

Leading up to the governor's action, the state legislature passed Assembly Bill 48 on September 20 that will create the Public Preschool, K-12, and College Health and Safety Bond Act of 2020 if it is approved by voters on March 3, 2020.

The bond act allocates $9 billion for preschool to K-12 with $5.2 billion of that funding modernization of schools, $2.8 billion for new construction, $500 million for career technical education facilities, and $500 million for charter schools. 

Another $2 billion will go toward community colleges, $2 billion for the California State University, and $2 billion for the University of California. 

Projects for facilities that have experienced health or life safety hazards, financial hardships, overcrowding, or lead in water will receive funding priority in addition to those that have been waiting for funding approval for two quarters. Legislators also are targeting schools that have mold or that are in need of seismic mitigation upgrades.
Rendering of an inlet structure to be built near Horace, N.D.
North Dakota - Federal, state, and local authorities are moving forward on a massive $2.75 billion flood diversion project south of the city of Fargo, North Dakota, that will protect more than 235,000 people from potential catastrophic flooding when complete.

The Fargo-Moorehead Area Diversion Project comprises 30 miles of channel, a 12-mile Southern Embankment, 19 highway bridges, four railroad crossings, three river control structures, and two aqueduct structures. The project also includes floodwalls, levees, and other flood protection measures in Fargo and Moorhead, Minnesota, to allow up to 37 feet of water to run through town.

Some phases of the project are under construction, but a draft request for proposals (RFP) is scheduled for release in the next three to six months to establish a public-private partnership (P3) for construction of the diversion channel. The RFP also would require the successful bidder to build all associated infrastructure along the channel, including county highway and interstate crossings, river crossings, railroad bridges, and spillways.

The project board expects to receive bids from the P3 applicants next fall and have the successful P3 proposer selected in late 2020. Under the agreement, the private-sector partner would provide financing to supplement public funding, design and construct the project, and operate and maintain the project for 30 years. After that time, the partner will hand back the project in good condition, according to project documents.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) selected the Diversion Project as its first P3 Demonstration Project in coordination with the FM Metro Diversion Authority, which consists of the cities of Fargo, North Dakota, and Moorehead, Minnesota, Clay and Cass counties, and the Cass County Joint Water Resource District.
Washington, D.C. - Congressional legislators are discussing a federal court decision that upholds the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) decision to deregulate internet access.

Net neutrality rules were passed in 2015. The goal of these regulations was to prohibit internet service providers (ISPs) from slowing speeds or favoring services with faster speeds. These regulations have recently been rolled back, prompting discussions about new legislation.

New legislation includes the Save the Internet Act, otherwise called H.R. 1644, which would restore some of the previous regulations.

The Congressional Budget Office says H.R. 1644 would restore the regulatory framework for ISPs that was in effect as of January 19, 2017. Oversight of ISPs would be shifted to the FCC by redesignating internet access services as telecommunications services subject to common-carrier laws under title II of the Communications Act of 1934.
Republican and Democrat lawmakers are discussing compromise legislation.
Sagamore Bridge
Massachusetts - A U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) draft study that evaluated Cape Cod bridges for rehabilitation recommended the replacement of the Bourne and Sagamore highway bridges. USACE engineers advised replacing the two Cape Cod Canal bridges with new structures that would carry four vehicle travel lanes and two auxiliary lanes. 

The study cited the age of the 84-year-old bridges and more frequent repairs and maintenance that incur costs and delay or detour traffic crossings. 

Corps engineers will include public comments and four construction options in an evaluation report for consideration by the agency's headquarters to make a final decision in February 2020. The options are to: take no action, initiate a major rehabilitation of the current bridges, replace each bridge with a new structure featuring four total lanes, or build the four-lane, two-auxiliary lane option. The latter two alternatives also include improved bike-pedestrian access.
North Carolina - Researchers at Duke University and the University of Georgia are developing a new flu vaccine.

The Duke Human Vaccine Institute (DHVI) is receiving $400 million over seven years from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) to create a longer-lasting, more broadly protective vaccine compared to the current seasonal flu shot.

Duke's funding comes from three contracts. The first contract involves conducting basic immunology and virology research to identify potential vaccine candidates. The second contract is for vaccine manufacturing, while the third contract provides funding for clinical trials.

Researchers at the University of Georgia could receive as much as $65 million over seven years from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to also develop a better flu vaccine. The university will partner with Emory University and Georgia Tech.
Lincoln Park High School
Illinois - Chicago Public Schools' (CPS) Fiscal Year 2020 Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) calls for $821 million to go toward neighborhood schools and provide various improvements in critical facility needs, interior and site improvements, educational programs, and IT and security upgrades.

Included in the total is $191 million in state money that CPS hopes to capture in this year's budget.

Critical maintenance and interior improvements projects will require $263 million to provide crucial building renovations to neighborhood schools throughout the city. Projects include 19 roof and envelope projects, and more than six renovations to mechanical systems. Funding will also provide $50 million for emergency repairs, $10.5 million for Americans with Disability Act (ADA) accessibility, and $2 million for temperature control system replacement.

CPS will allocate $120 million to expand and convert Pre-K facilities to support free, full-day Pre-K. The CIP also calls for $85 million for modernizing buildings, including $30 million to renovate science labs in 29 high schools, $30 million in capital upgrades, and $25 million to provide modern devices and infrastructure at more than 130 schools.

Other investments include $45 million in site improvements such as new playgrounds at more than 20 schools, and $60 million in IT network infrastructure and equipment.
State Route 37
California - Marin County commuters are seeking relief from State Route 37 congestion compounded by frequent flooding that closed the highway 20 days over the last two years.

A cost estimate has not been attached to the project, but to construct a larger highway over the wetlands would likely cost several billion dollars and take decades to complete. Converting the roadway to a tolled highway could help lower costs and expedite the timeline.

Other options under consideration are installing a moveable lane for about $100 million that would allow for a direction change and shifting an existing shoulder to an additional lane during peak hours. Officials also are suggesting construction of a roundabout at Sears Point to replace a traffic signal there and alleviate a severe chokepoint.

The state appropriated $10 million to study a section of SR 37 between Highway 101 and Sears Point.
Washington, D.C. - The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is looking to advance its mail delivery fleet using drones. The agency issued a request for information (RFI) as it seeks to gather information about the unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) market, which it will use to consider future requirements.

Candidates would develop UAS operations and demonstrate the reliability and safety of using drone technology for mail delivery. Drones would fulfill several missions for the USPS, including launching from trucks to make deliveries, and ride-sharing, a program that would allow customers to access the drones for business-to-customer deliveries.

Other uses would see drones deployed on routes that are costly to operate. The USPS wants to use drones a minimum of eight continuous hours per day and over hilly terrain, water, semi-improved roads, and city streets. Initially, drones will make four flights per day.

The USPS also wants to help with autonomous vehicle initiatives, and its own drone fleet would be useful in collecting geospatial and sensor data for three-dimensional mapping. Candidates must submit RFI proposals by November 4.
Brooklyn Museum
New York - Mayor Bill de Blasio recently announced the city of New York's plans to conduct deep energy retrofits of nine facilities in the city with another 28 facilities designated for future retrofits.

Deep energy retrofits take a comprehensive approach to make buildings more energy efficient with the goal of achieving a 50 percent or greater reduction in building energy usage and reducing carbon emissions 30 percent or more. They may include improving building insulation, adopting designs that result in increased natural daylight and better ventilation, upgrading electric fixtures, and automating control of heating and cooling systems.

The Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS), which will perform the audits, will then partner with city agencies to plan and implement the energy conservation measures.

The first nine facilities where retrofitting will occur are: DSNY Manhattan Garage 7 (57th Street); NYPD Building Maintenance Section Facility; DCLA Brooklyn Museum; DHS Harlem 1 Men's Shelter; DHS Keener Assessment Shelter; DHS Bushwick Family Residence; DHS Stockholm Family Residence; DOE PS62 Bronx; and DOE MS301 Bronx.

The retrofitting projects will be completed by 2025, according to de Blasio's office. In addition to the nine facilities that will soon begin retrofitting work, DCAS will conduct audits of other city buildings, including public schools, courthouses, office buildings, police precincts, and NYC hospital facilities to identify the most suitable candidates for future retrofits.
Charlotte, North Carolina
North Carolina - The North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) is distributing more than $147.5 million to 508 cities and towns in the state for roadway improvements.

The Powell Bill grants funds mainly to be used for street resurfacing within the corporate limits of a municipality. However, the money can also be used to pay for constructing, improving, or repairing any street or public thoroughfare, including bridges and drainage systems, and for planning and constructing bikeways, greenways, and sidewalks.

An initial allocation of $73.8 million was made on October 1, and the next allocation in the same amount will be made by December 31.

The city of Charlotte is set to receive $20.5 million. Raleigh city projects are getting $10.7 million, and $7.3 million will go to the city of Greensboro. Other cities receiving notable amounts include Winston-Salem at $6.3 million, Durham at $6.3 million, and Fayetteville at $5.2 million.
   View our Government Contracting Pipeline and Texas Government Insider newsletter archives
Washington, D.C. - The House passed new legislation that would require the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to share technical guidance about cybersecurity vulnerabilities with other agencies and sectors.

The Cybersecurity Vulnerability Remediation Act calls for the DHS and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) to disseminate their cybersecurity mitigation protocols with other agencies, industry, academia, and the public.

Hardware and outdated software would be detailed in "playbooks" showing critical vulnerabilities and strategies to thwart them. These playbooks would be developed and distributed by the CISA.

Another piece of the bill calls for the Science and Technology Directorate of DHS to create a program to pay private companies and academia to address the same vulnerabilities but with their own solutions.

National Security Agency (NSA) officials say cyber attackers are focusing on common vulnerabilities, such as users failing to patch systems which leads to issues because of unsupported hardware and software.

A 2016 report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) found that of 12 government agencies surveyed, all were using unsupported operating systems that no longer received updates from their provider. Some agencies reported still using operating systems from the 1980s and 1990s.

The DHS has created a new initiative to set up a portal that allows users to anonymously report bugs, and the Department of Justice released its own framework for how organizations can develop similar programs.
Tony Goetz Elementary School
Oklahoma - Voters in the Muskogee Public Schools district approved a $110 million bond issue October 8 that will improve several school facilities.

Priorities of the bond issue include improving safety and security, renovating and repairing aging facilities, and enhancing existing infrastructure.
The district will invest $39 million in its secondary schools, $24 million in its elementary schools, $12 million to construct a new 9,000-seat football stadium, and $20 million to build a new field house with a gym that has seating for 2,000 spectators.

An $18 million renovation will transform the Alice Robertson campus into a new freshman academy that can accommodate 500 students.

As part of the elementary school improvements, Tony Goetz Elementary School will be demolished and rebuilt into a $13 million campus with a capacity of 400 students.

Another priority is to remodel Muskogee High School using $12 million from the bond package. A new front entrance would be built, running from the media center to the auditorium and featuring a lobby. The hall would improve security by linking several buildings.
Bend, Oregon
Oregon - The city of Bend seeks to improve transportation for its growing community, and voters could see an up to $100 million bond issue on the ballot in May 2020.

Bend has been analyzing its transportation needs over the past two years, and recently concluded that its top priorities are improving traffic flow, fixing intersection bottlenecks, and planning for future growth.

The city wants to move forward with multiple projects; however, funding is still needed from other sources to fix additional issues that bring the total cost to at least $200 million.

Council members will seek community feedback and ultimately decide in January whether to put the bond on the ballot.
Major projects for which the city will contribute funding for include relocating a switchyard for $25 million, reconstructing the Portland Avenue corridor at Revere Avenue/US 97 and Wall Street for $26 million, and reconstructing Parrell Road from China Hat Road to Brosterhous Road for $29 million.

To improve school access and safety, almost $11 million will go toward improving east-west bicycle and pedestrian access to Bend High School, Bear Creek Elementary School, and Juniper Swim & Fitness Center. Another $10 million will be invested in making citywide school access safety improvements.
Washington, D.C. - The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is set to unveil updated regulations regarding lead in drinking water, which have been pending for more than eight years.

The Lead and Copper Rule regulations were put in place in 1991 but haven't seen a substantial update since then. Since 2011, the EPA has been attempting to update its lead standards, but struggled trying to mandate replacement of lead service lines without placing an unmanageable financial burden on the water utilities that own them.

A major priority of the agency is to ensure that the most corrosive lead pipes are removed first.
The P3 Higher Education Summit program presents a series of keynotes, case studies, panels, workshops, and diverse networking opportunities designed for attendees to deepen their understanding on alternative project models, innovations in project delivery, the value proposition of public-private partnerships (P3s), and the role they can play in the delivery of essential campus infrastructure.

This year's Summit will be from October 24-25 at the Manchester Grand Hyatt, 1 Market Place, in San Diego, California. Early check-in is available October 23.

The two-day agenda has been programmed to help you plan and procure successful projects, understand best practices in selecting and negotiating with prospective partners, and take steps to ensure project success.
More than 125 leading practitioners, including Strategic Partnerships, Inc. President and CEO Mary Scott Nabers, will present their firsthand observations of higher education P3 projects of all sizes in different markets around the country. The Summit also will offer in-depth roundtable discussions for delegates with interest in discussing specific P3 issues in a more candid and interactive forum.

With over 850 participating delegates, attendees find the Summit to be one of the most effective places on their event schedule to cultivate relationships and network with the industry's most active and influential professionals.

Join more than 850 public representatives, design-build leaders, and P3 experts at the P3 Government Conference for two days of transportation, water, energy, and social infrastructure project delivery. 

The conference is scheduled from December 3-4 at the Marriott Marquis Washington, D.C.

The P3 Government Conference invites local, state, and federal project representatives evaluating upgrades and new developments for two days of P3 education and networking.

This year's program provides the essential tools and know-how to successfully plan, deliver, and operate P3 projects of all sizes.

Connect with owners who want to better understand how alternative project delivery can be used for their next project, identify partners and procurement opportunities, and meet with other communities and agencies using P3s for their critical infrastructure challenges.

Join other delegates to discover new projects and new partners! To be included in future event updates, receive presentations, and connect with the over 800 delegates who attended last year's conference, please visit the conference website and register today!

Ohio - Hillard City Council appointed Michelle Crandall as Hilliard's first city manager. Voters approved changing the city's form of government to council-city manager in 2018. Crandall previously served as assistant city manager for the city of Hilliard.

California - The Omnitrans board of directors selected Erin Rogers to serve as interim chief executive officer (CEO)-general manager, effective November 7. Rogers currently serves as Omnitrans deputy general manager. She succeeds outgoing CEO-General Manager Scott Graham.

Missouri - Gov. Mike Parson announced Ken Zellars as director of the state's Department of Revenue on October 2. Zellars had been serving as acting director since March. He previously served as the department's chief operating officer.

Washington - The Port of Everett Commission voted unanimously to approve a contract with Deputy Executive Director Lisa Lefeber to be the port's next CEO, effective October 16. Prior to her role as deputy executive director, Lefeber served as the port's chief of policy and communications. She succeeds Port CEO Les Reardanz who is leaving to devote more time to his family and new position as rear admiral in the Navy Reserve Judge Advocates General Corps (JAG).

Florida - Palatka City Commission voted to offer the position of city manager to William "Bill" Shanahan Jr. His final appointment could be considered on October 10. Shanahan most recently was the county manager of York County, South Carolina. He previously served as deputy administrator for the city of Augusta, Georgia.

Washington - Vinod Brahmapuram has been named the state's chief information security officer (CISO), effective October 21. He succeeds Ron Buchanan who vacated the office on September 6. In his new role, Brahmapuram will direct the state's Office of Cybersecurity. He currently is the state of South Carolina's deputy chief information security officer.
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