Volume 11, Issue 10- Wednesday, March 13, 2019
Mary Scott Nabers, President/CEO, Strategic Partnerships, Inc.

A new U.S. marketplace is growing so fast many have not noticed it - the charter school network. It is already extremely large and it touches almost every region of this country. Contractors of all types and sizes should take notice of the abundance of upcoming opportunities. And, the public at large should also be aware of what is happening. 

In 2016, about 130,000 students were on waitlists hoping to be accepted to a charter school in Texas. Nationwide, as far back as the 2013-14 school year, more than one million students' names were on waitlists for charter schools. That number has now doubled or tripled. 

In spite of outcries from thousands of public school leaders, elected officials, parent-teacher organizations and education experts who claim that charter schools are going to destroy the country's public school system, demand from students to enroll in these alternative-choice schools continues to escalate. This trend is definitely worthy of note. 

Although many people think of charter schools as being separate from the public school network, the schools are actually funded and regulated in many ways by state public school systems. Charter schools receive public funding based on enrollment. The average daily attendance data controls funding.  

Charter schools are eligible for state and federal funding as well as government grants, and they are regulated in many ways similar to public schools. The schools receive about 30 percent less per student but are allowed to offer unique types of basic curriculum which appeals to students and parents.

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California- The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) recently published a timeline for the Success Dam Enlargement Project taking place in Porterville. The project, estimated at $74 million, will widen the Success Dam spillway, raise it by ten feet and increase the current capacity of the reservoir to reduce flood risk and improve the irrigation water supply. The project is currently in the design phase for the right abutment. This abutment will help to support the pressure created by the spillway. 

The design phase for the right abutment began in October 2018 and will extend until March 2020. A survey of possible environmental impacts from the right abutment will take place in conjunction with the design phase. 

After environmental impacts are assessed, the design phase for the spillway will begin this April and will be complete in March 2021. An environmental impact survey for the spillway will begin in August, shortly after the design phase starts. It will last through October 2020. Next is the acquisition phase before construction can begin. Construction will begin on the abutment in July 2020 and spillway widening construction begins in July 2021.
Missouri- Jackson County will issue a request for proposals (RFP) for an owner's representative services for a new jail. An owner's representative manages all aspects of a construction project on behalf of an investor or developer. The county recently formed a working group for project development of the new jail. A consultant team explored new facility options ranging from $230 million to $270 million. 

An owner's representative will have primary management responsibility for the planning, design, construction, commissioning and occupancy of the new county jail. The 2019 budget includes $30 million for the detention center and the county will issue the RFP by early April.
New Mexico- The city of Santa Fe plans to send out a request for proposals (RFP) in the second quarter of the year to decide the future of the former Santa Fe University of Art and Design. The city wants a few of the 32 buildings to remain, such as the Greer Garson Theatre, but acknowledges that the rest could be renovated or demolished. 

The proposal for the campus, located on St. Michael's Drive, calls for reviving the midtown property as a mix of housing, education and economic diversification. The city of Santa Fe purchased what was then the College of Santa Fe campus in 2009 for $29 million. The city then brought in the Santa Fe University of Art and Design as a tenant to replace the shuttered college. The first step for the campus would be infrastructure improvements that could be done in 2020, with that year also potentially seeing the first steps in redevelopment.
Minnesota- The Brainerd School Board will solicit bids for updates to three schools. Forestview Middle School will undergo a $1.5 million renovation of its parent pick-up/drop-off areas and a secure entrance to enhance safety. The project will go out for bids on March 27 and is scheduled to be completed by the start of the 2019-20 school year. 

Nisswa Elementary will receive a two-story classroom addition, a full-sized gymnasium, enlargement of the cafeteria and additional remodeling. The project is estimated at $12 million and request for bids will be released on March 26 with construction slated for completion in fall of 2020. 

Lastly, Harrison Elementary School will switch its main entrance and add a new learning commons for each grade level, a new gymnasium and larger cafeteria. A solicitation for bids will go out on April 2, with construction slated to be completed by fall 2020.
North Carolina- North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper proposed letting the state's voters decide the fate of a $3.9 billion bond package in 2020. The proposed bond would include $3.1 billion for education efforts, including $2 billion for K-12 public schools statewide and $100 million in the North Carolina History Museum and the North Carolina Zoo. Also included in the bond proposal would be $800 million to invest in clean water through local water and sewer projects. 

The bond package also includes infrastructure improvement funding, a projected $300 million, for all the state's community colleges. If the measure makes it to the ballot and is approved, it would result in $3 million for Roanoke-Chowan Community College, $3.48 million for Halifax Community College, $6.06 million for College of the Albemarle and $3.6 million for Martin Community College. Cooper pitched the borrowing and several other education-related parts of his spending proposal on Tuesday. They include raises for all public school teachers, restoring a pay bump for teachers with master's degrees and providing tens of millions of dollars toward school safety, health, staff and infrastructure improvements. Cooper's full budget proposal through mid-2021 comes out Wednesday.

New Jersey- New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy has announced an initiative that will help to facilitate investment in New Jersey's Opportunity Zones. The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA), in partnership with the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA) and the New Jersey Redevelopment Authority (NJRA), will develop the N.J. Opportunity Zone Marketplace, a real estate and business equity project sharing portal. 

As envisioned, the Marketplace will be a nationwide access point where qualified investors and eligible New Jersey projects can meet up and begin the development process. This portal will allow projects from New Jersey's 75 Opportunity Zone municipalities to market their investment opportunities nationwide. The Marketplace is expected to launch in summer 2019.
Photo courtesy: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Washington Aqueduct
Washington, D.C.- President Donald Trump's Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 budget request contains $200 billion for infrastructure in a bid to leverage $1 trillion in total infrastructure investment. A total of $150 million in funding has been allocated for a new Army Corps of Engineers account for public-private partnership (P3) projects. This account would change the way future construction investments are funded with less reliance on federal appropriations. 

The budget expands the Corps's current use of section 1043 of the Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2014, as amended, by including $150 million for an innovative program under which the Corps would transfer appropriated funds to non-federal sponsors that decide to construct a project on their own. Non-federal implementation of projects would speed up the construction of more infrastructure projects and create efficiencies in delivery. Under this program, the Corps would issue a solicitation for proposals from non-federal sponsors to construct projects using a combination of federal and non-federal funding. 

The budget proposes to sell the Washington Aqueduct, the wholesale supply system for Washington D.C., and parts of Fairfax County, Arlington County and the city of Falls Church in Virginia. The Corps owns and operates the aqueduct, which is the only local water supply system in the nation owned and operated by the Corps. Ownership of local water supply would be carried out by a state or local government, or by the private sector where there are appropriate market and regulatory incentives. "Selling the aqueduct to a public or private utility would contribute to American prosperity through a more efficient allocation of economic resources," according to the proposed budget.
Michigan- The Milford Downtown Development Authority (DDA) issued a request for quotation (RFQ) to build a hotel on 7 acres of property in the downtown business district. The RFQ is due March 28. The authority is looking for industry leaders in hotel development, management and expertise to build an upscale, boutique-style hotel with 60 rooms. 

The RFQ describes in detail the DDA's vision for what it's looking for in a future hotel as well as possible incentives that could be offered as part of a public-private partnership. If a reputable hotelier is found, the DDA will take the project through the public approval process. Based on a feasibility study conducted last spring, the DDA moved forward with the project in the village of Milford. Applicant interviews and presentations will take place in early April with a final applicant being selected April 18.  
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Connecticut- Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont is exploring private investment to help pay for constructing electronic highway tolls through a partnership with the state. The state would eventually issue a request for proposals to get specific plans from businesses if tolls are approved by the legislature, but all details of the public-private partnership have not been worked out. 

One possibility is private investors could provide upfront money to construct an overhead toll system. The construction costs for Lamont's plan - which includes tolling all vehicles on Interstate-95, I-91, I-84 and Route 15 - are currently projected at $213 million. Tolls would not be fully implemented until the 2025 fiscal year. They would raise about $800 million a year. Once the idea is fleshed out, Lamont would need to get it approved by the state legislature. He has introduced a bill that would allow executive branch agencies to create public-private partnerships in order to spur economic growth and job creation.  
Maryland- The Baltimore Development Corporation (BDC) this week issued a request for proposals (RFP) for developers interested in purchasing and redeveloping two pieces of land totaling over 107,000 square feet. The land is located in the Bromo Arts District. The area was established in 2012 by the state to boost investment in other arts activities and venues such as theaters, galleries and housing for artists by providing tax breaks. Proposals are due to the BDC by July 9. 

The city owns the property which was marketed for redevelopment by the BDC almost 20 years ago. This land is part of a five-block area of properties. Over the years, the parcels have been broken up and offered in smaller RFPs.  
Vermont- Voters in South Burlington have rejected a 1 percent increase in property tax to pay for infrastructure projects, including construction of an indoor athletics facility and an arts center. Private donations, commercial partnerships, regional partnerships or going back to voters with a local option tax increase tied to a specific project are other possible funding sources. 

The indoor recreation center would be built at Veterans Memorial Park and feature four high school basketball courts and a field reserved for soccer, lacrosse and field hockey. It would also include offices for the city's Recreation and Parks department and an indoor walking track. The city arts center would be part of South Burlington's developing downtown. The center would include a 500-600 seat performance space, a 150-seat black box studio and arts education studios. The indoor recreation facility has some architectural renderings, while only a feasibility study has been completed for the arts center. The city plans to focus on pursuing a regional funding model and increasing its pursuit of private donations and commercial partnerships. 
Mississippi- Warren County plans to solicit a request for proposals on a six-year garbage service contract. The county is expected to advertise for bids on the contract March 27 and would like to have a new contract in place by June 3. The new contract will include providing service for people with special needs, which has never been included in the garbage service contract in the past. The county and the hauler will evaluate each special-needs request on an individual basis. 

A second alternate bid will be awarded in case the first contractor does not follow the contract or for some reason cannot. The new contractor will need to present a quarterly report that includes residences that do not set their garbage cans at the curb. This will keep the contractor from charging the county for residences that are vacant.  
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Missouri- St. Louis Lambert International Airport's airlines have hired a Naples, Fla.-based consulting firm to help them decide whether to agree to any airport privatization deal eventually worked out by city officials. This will be in addition to a city of St. Louis work group studying whether to privatize Lambert airport in addition to consulting companies hired to advise the city. 

Under a plan approved last week by the airport commission, the city-owned airport will pay the airlines' consultant the fees and will be reimbursed later by the airlines. Lambert officials said the airlines asked for that arrangement to make their internal budgeting processes less complicated. The city has already sent an application to the Federal Aviation Administration to consider a private airport operator.  
California- The Alameda County Environmental Health Department has flagged problems at the Emma Hood Swim Center as far back as 2010. The pool, located on the Alameda High School campus, will need to close at the end of May if upgrades aren't completed. Problems include water in the two pools mixing because of piping, making it difficult to verify the required six-hour turnover rates. Pool access for the disabled also needs to be improved. Just to fix the code violations at both pools could cost up to $3.6 million, while building an entirely new center could cost as much as $7 million. 

The Alameda City Council has set up a committee to work on getting short-term upgrades completed so the center can remain open after the May 31 deadline. Closing the pools would cost about $125,000 annually because the systems still must be maintained. Demolition would cost $250,000. Funding options include putting an infrastructure bond on the November 2020 ballot, private donations and a public-private partnership (P3).Under an agreement approved in December 2016, the school district is responsible for maintaining the pools at the two campuses, with overall operating costs split equally between the district and the city.  
Florida- The city of Sunrise plans to request design proposals from developers for new housing and multi-use facilities. The city is in the process of creating a plan for its east side, including a 3-acre vacant piece of property that the city believes is well-suited for up to 30 townhouses or a mix of townhouses and retail shops. The city purchased the parcel two years ago for approximately $1 million. 

Additionally, the city is negotiating with an architect to create a design for a public art plaza where a former post office currently stands. A request for proposals will be issued later this year.
Maryland- Montgomery County officials have announced a plan to expand access to affordable care for children up to age 5. A $7 million funding commitment from the county executive in the upcoming budget is poised to kick start the childcare initiative. It is a concept that has garnered the abundant support of local lawmakers due to the overwhelming concern that childcare and early education offerings in Montgomery County have become both too expensive and generally unequal in quality. 

The average cost of infant childcare in the county is just over $16,000 annually, while center-based care is even more expensive at $19,000. These high costs have been deemed an undue burden for working families and the county will step in to offer relief by establishing 600 seats over the course of four years. Officials are committed to forging a public-private partnership (P3) to get the program off the ground.
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Illinois- Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker has appointed Ron Guerrier, a veteran of the private sector with more than two decades of experience managing information technology for large companies, as his state's next chief information officer (CIO). He has served as the CIO for multi-billion-dollar companies since 2012. Kirk Lonbom, retired as the CIO in December following a 38-year career in public service. Lonbom's temporary replacement, Acting CIO Jack King, departed in February. 
Texas- U.S. Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson said in a letter to President Trump that she plans to resign from her post effective in late May. Wilson has been named as the sole finalist to be the next president of the University of Texas at El Paso, a position that the system's regents will vote on after a state-required waiting period of 21 days. She said she will resign after getting the job. Wilson, who was an Air Force officer during the Cold War, had been leading the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology when she was tapped for this position. She represented New Mexico in Congress from 1998 to 2009. 
Maine- Fred Brittain, an information technology leader for the University of Maine system, will become the chief information officer (CIO) for the entire state starting next month. Brittain will take over the position on April 1. He replaces acting CIO and Deputy Commissioner Dick Thompson, a former CIO for the state as well as the University of Maine system. The state has been without a permanent CIO since Jim Smith stepped down from the role in September. 
New York- The president of LaGuardia Community College, Gail Mellow, is stepping down after nearly 20 years. Mellow will leave at the end of August. Mellow joined LaGuardia as senior administrator for curriculum and pedagogy, before being named president of Gloucester County College in Sewell, N.J. in 1997-a role she held for three years before returning to LaGuardia in 2000 as president. 
California- City Manager David White has tendered his resignation and plans to take a deputy city manager position in Berkeley. White's last day as city manager is May 2. White was appointed city manager in June 2014. He replaced Sean Quinn, who retired that April but remained as interim city manager while the council sought a replacement. Prior to White's appointment by the City Council, he served concurrently as director of the city's Finance Department and assistant city manager from February 2013. 
Oregon- Steve Allen is the new state behavioral health director at Oregon Health Authority (OHA). He will begin work April 29. Steve Allen, a skilled clinician, national expert on behavioral health policy and state government reform and experienced behavioral health administrator, will fill the role created in July 2018, when OHA reorganized its behavioral health program. Mike Morris had been serving in the role on an interim basis until he retired in February. 
Arizona- Deputy Police Chief Susan Smith was selected as the next chief for the Yuma Police Department (YPD). Smith served as the city's deputy police chief since 2012 and rose through the ranks with YPD since 1995. Smith will replace John Lekan, who announced his retirement after a 33-year career with YPD. He has been YPD's chief since 2012 and his last day is March 28. 
California- Julie Lucido, an engineer with government experience in the Napa Valley, will become director of the Public Works department on April 8. She returns to Napa after spending three years with the city of Fairfield, most recently as its public works head. Lucido replaces Jacques LaRochelle, who retired Jan. 15. His former deputy, Eric Whan, has led Public Works on an interim basis since LaRochelle left. Lucido has spent more than 15 years in engineering and management posts for various local governments. 
Virginia- Eric M. Dahl has been chosen as the Fluvanna County administrator after Steve Nichols retires in July. Dahl has been working for the county since October 2011. He currently holds the position of deputy county administrator and finance director for Fluvanna County. Dahl will take on his new role on July 6. Dahl joined Fluvanna County in 2011 and his served as the deputy county administrator and director of finance. 
Pennsylvania- The Centre Area Transportation Authority (CATA) recently announced that Miles Turpin has been named its director of transportation. His 26 years in the transit industry include various senior management capacities with Orange County Transportation Authority in Orange, Calif., Breeze Fixed-Route Operation in Oceanside, Calif., and the Regional Transportation District (RTD) in Denver, Colo. 
Hawaii- William May, Hawaii State Hospital administrator, is leaving his post in early May. A national search is underway to find May's successor. May, who joined Hawaii State Hospital in July 2014, is leaving in early May to coincide with the end of the legislative session. May has also served in chief executive officer positions in New Jersey at Trenton Psychiatric Hospital, Ewing Residential Treatment Center and the Woodbridge Developmental Center. 
Tennessee- James Mills has been named the city manager of Cookeville. Mike Davidson announced his plans to resign at the end of January to pursue another job opportunity. He plans to remain as city manager through June 30. Mills moved to Cookeville in 1986 and worked for 12 years as principal community planner for the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development. Milles was later hired as the new director for the city's planning department.
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