The Idaho Transportation Board will conduct a workshop Tuesday focusing on the GARVEE (Connecting Idaho) program and on professional service agreements (PSAs) in the Division of Highways.
The workshop, scheduled in the East Annex Conference Room, will precede the board’s regular monthly business meeting Wednesday at the Headquarters Auditorium.
Some of the information to be presented includes legislative and congressional actions since 1995 that impacted the department’s procurement of professional services, staffing history, engineering recruitment and retention issues, and the quality-based selection process.
In Fiscal Year 1996 and 1997, ITD’s use of consultants averaged about 44 percent. It has increased to an average of about 83 percent to meet current program needs. Performing all non-local work in-house would require project development staff levels to almost double, and that does not include support staff functions.
Consultants are used to balance the department’s workload, augment ITD staff to produce the necessary projects without increasing ITD’s staff, and provide access to specialized expertise and diversified experience.
Other items on the board’s business meeting agenda
The board will review the following draft legislation when it meets in Boise Wednesday: permanent registration option for trailers, temporary vehicle clearance fee waiver, driver education program permits and fees, and refund of vehicle registration fees.
Rest area program
The Flying J Corporation is interested in partnering with ITD for an Oasis rest area at McCammon, along Interstate 15 in District 5. Upon board approval, ITD will provide $328,000 to Flying J to help it provide sufficient parking for additional vehicles.
The Flying J Corporation intends to begin construction of the new Oasis travel plaza this fall. By entering into a partnership at McCammon – the first Oasis project in the state – the department will be able to close the existing rest area at Inkom. The facility is co-located with the Port of Entry, which creates safety concerns. Closing the Inkom rest area will free up limited space at the site for POE and Idaho State Police activities.
Several other rest area issues also will be discussed at the meeting. Because of funding issues, the Rest Area Program is funded at approximately $5 million annually in the FY07-11 Statewide Transportation Investment Program (STIP). That counters the board-approved resolution to provide $10 million annually for rest areas.
Last month the board requested a discussion on rest area issues, including the level of funding, responsibilities of the consultant overseeing the Rest Area Program, and impacts to the consultant agreement as a result of the reshaped program.