Transportation board to review rental agreements

The Idaho Transportation Board will consider an annual report on state-owned dwellings when it meets next week in Boise. The monthly business meeting will begin informally at noon with a working lunch at the Division of Aeronautics office. Following the meeting with members of the Aeronautics Advisory Board, the transportation board will tour the Aeronautics facility.

ITD provides or rents state-owned dwellings to employees in situations where the best interests of the department are served. In some instances, employees reside in a state-owned dwelling as a condition of their employment, as is the case at Reeds Bar and Powell in District 2, Riddle in District 3, and Johnson Creek Airport in District 3.

The department can provide rentals of state-owned dwellings at a reduced amount. The fair market rental value was determined 10 years ago through an appraisal process. Each year the rent and reductions are compared to Department of Parks and Recreation and U.S. Forest Service dwellings to ensure they remain consistent with market conditions.

ITD also owns nine trailer pads and three houses at rest areas throughout the state. Rest area maintenance contracts require the contractor to be available for daily conferences and on-call for emergencies 24/7. Providing the state-owned dwelling is part of the consideration of the maintenance contract.

Other board discussion

State Highway System Adjustments
A summary of proposed and requested changes to the state highway system will be presented to the board for consideration. The department is pursuing the addition of five new routes or re-aligned highways to the state system.

Upon completion of the U.S. 95, Sandpoint Byway project, approximately two miles of U.S. 95 will be added to the system in District 1. The intent is to relinquish the existing highway to the city of Sandpoint.

A similar effort is under way in District 4. The U.S. 93 Twin Falls Alternate Route is complete, and the new alignment will become part of the state system.

A cooperative agreement is being finalized with local jurisdictions to transfer the City of Rocks Byway to the state’s system. The 16-mile highway would extend Idaho 77 south to Almo in District 4.

District 3 and Boise County also have a memorandum of understanding that outlines procedures for transferring the Banks to Lowman Highway to the state. The 33-mile route connects Idaho 55 from Banks to Idaho 21 at Lowman.

If the Legislature approves additional GARVEE bonding authority for fiscal year 2012, Idaho 16 would be extended two miles south to U.S. 20/26.

Other requests to transfer routes from a local jurisdiction to the state also will be summarized. That list includes routes such as the 8.6-mile road between Wendell and Hagerman in District 4; approximately 72 miles in districts 4 and 6 to connect Minidoka and Arco; and Warm Lake Road in District 3, from Idaho 55 near Cascade approximately 35 miles east to Landmark.

According to board policy, a number of other state highways should be transferred to local jurisdictions. However, legislation requires the department to obtain the consent of the local jurisdiction before it can relinquish routes. In addition to a number of business loops and spurs, some routes that should be relinquished include Idaho 4 in District 1, Idaho 7 and Idaho 64 in District 2, and a portion of Idaho 25 in District 4.

Proposed legislation for 2011 Session
A recent court decision determined the department’s administrative license suspension (ALS) advisory form is flawed. ITD staff members will request approval to submit legislation to correct the deficiency. The proposal removes the requirement to seize any license and issue a temporary permit when a licensed driver refuses to submit to or submits to and fails evidentiary testing for the presence of alcohol or drugs.

A one-time cost of approximately $20,000 is anticipated to revise, reprint, and distribute the ALS notification form statewide.

Published 1-14-2011