March 19, 2010
Direct from the Director
— ITD vision —
Last month, I explained my leadership style and expectations of the department. My leadership style and expectations are guided by a vision for the department and employees. Sharing a common vision allows us to be consistent in our operations and decision-making. I believe you will find yourself and your job duties in each element of the vision.
The overriding vision for the department is this: be the best transportation department in the country. We can tell our customers the good things we do, and say we are the best, but if we have to tell someone how good we are, then we may not be as good as we think. Our customers have to see and believe we are the best.
See Director Ness's video message
Support for vision
Legislative leaders embrace director's vision for ITD
The chairs of the Idaho Senate and House transportation committees praised the vision to improve the Idaho Transportation Department outlined today (Wednesday) by Director Brian W. Ness. “Under the new leadership I’ve seen dramatic improvement already at ITD. I applaud the director’s vision and look forward to working with him to successfully implement it,” said Senator John McGee, chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee. Representative JoAn Wood, who chairs the House Transportation and Defense Committee, said she also has been impressed by Ness’ leadership and vision.
JFAC recommends new bonding authority
The Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee (JFAC) recently recommended authorizing the department to sell $12 million in new GARVEE bonds in Fiscal Year 2011. That recommendation goes to the House and Senate for final approval. Legislative approval of continued bonding authority for the GARVEE (Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicle) Program will allow ITD to move forward with right of way purchase for the Idaho 16 corridor.
Pavement monitoring experts move to Division of Highways
ITD Deputy Director Scott Stokes this week announced a realignment of several Division of Transportation Planning staff members to support the department’s efforts to improve pavement management decisions. Stokes said five individuals who have a wealth of expertise and knowledge in pavement inventory will be assigned to the Division of Highways
59 HQ, Aeronautics employees honored for years of service
Three employees who have reached 40 years of service to Idaho citizens were among those honored Wednesday by the transportation board during its monthly business meeting in Boise. Becky Davis, Jesse Smith and Dave Turner all reached the four-decade plateau of service in the last half of 2009. They joined 56 other employees who were honored for achieving career milestones.
Crews stretch to reach pier caps for cleaning
It takes more than a scrub brush and household cleaner to wash a bridge. ITD utility craftsmen Curt Stoker and Matt Evans used a high-pressure washer and the department’s Reach-All bridge truck early this month to clean pier caps on two bridges in District 2.
Magazine ranks Idaho highways in middle of pack
Idaho drivers will not experience the nation’s best highways when driving through the state, nor will they ride on the worst, according to a recent survey by Reader’s Digest. In fact, the condition of Idaho highways ranks nearly in the middle at 23rd. Where will you find the best highways, on average, in the nation? Kansas, the report indicates. The worst is at the end other end of the Mississippi River in Louisiana.
Nominations due Wednesday for annual program
The deadline for submitting nominations for the 2010 Excellence in Transportation Awards program is is next Wednesday (March 24), announces Monica Crider. The program will present honors in three personnel categories and four project categories. Applications must be submitted by 4 p.m. Winners will be announced at a 2 p.m. ceremony at the Headquarters auditorium on April 28.
Transit option available on 511 system
Idaho’s bus riders have a new online source for real-time transit information with the launch of 511 Transit – a new enhancement to the state’s 511 Traveler’s Services System, the Idaho Transportation Department announced. The new 511 Transit system, found at 511.idaho.gov, will debut with online schedule and route information for Citylink (Kootenai and Benewah counties), START Bus (Teton County), Pocatello Regional Transit and Northwestern Trailways.
Task force subcommittee begins looking at transit funding
Members of the Governor’s Transportation Funding Task Force Subcommittee on Public Transportation met for the first time in Boise Tuesday. The subcommittee is charged with planning for Idaho’s long-term public transportation needs and funding options for the next five, 10 and 20 years. Its Tuesday agenda included work on expanding its guiding principles and determining a strategy to achieve its mission within a narrow time frame.
Board approves UI's Root as new PTAC member
The Idaho Transportation Board appointed Carl Root, University of Idaho Director of Parking and Transportation Services, as the new District 2 Public Transportation Advisory Council (PTAC) representative. The board received the recommendation from the Public Transportation Advisory Council after a thorough vetting process that included the District Coordination Council as well as the Local Mobility Networks.
Governor honors retired Aeronautics Board member
Bob Hoff, who recently retired from the Idaho Aeronautics Advisory Board, has a new signature atop his unique retirement trophy. Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter congratulated Hoff and autographed the propeller when he visited Idaho Falls March 8.
Quick response saves conference, return flight
ITD Division of Motor Vehicles,
Re: service of Terry-Jo Gaylin, Jeannie Purcell and Naomi Rawls
Last week my husband Kerry was in Seattle at a conference. When he left home, he didn’t realize his license had expired. He was allowed by the Pocatello Airport to pass through security and board his flight. Thank goodness for “small-town” common sense. However, this later proved to be a huge problem for him. The conference was in the Federal Building.
March 12, 2010
JFAC approves, recommends passage of ITD budget
The Joint Appropriation-Finance Committee (JFAC) last week approved and forwarded with a “do pass” recommendation an ITD budget of $483,657,200 million for the coming fiscal year. That amount is nearly $20 million less than what Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter proposed as part of the state budget in his January message to the Legislature. Most of the reduction ($18,550,800) came from contract construction to reflect intent of HB 457.
New software helps simplify vehicle dealer data reports
The Motor Vehicles Division wanted a database – driven solution to track public requests about automobile dealers. What it got was a software solution that far exceeded expectations. A coalition of DMV and Enterprise Technology Services representatives gathered this week to put the finishing touches on a three-month project that streamlines interaction between ITD and auto dealers.
Federal grant will help train wounded veterans
ITD and the Idaho Department of Labor are collaborating in a project that will help veterans injured in Iraq and Afghanistan find meaningful employment in the transportation field. Michelle George of ITD’s Human Resource Services office, and Chris Ramos of the Department of Labor wrote the application that resulted in a $99,300 grant from the Federal Highway Administration. Michael Caliendo, a program analyst and civil rights specialist for the FHWA office in Idaho, assisted with the grant application.
Pilfered sign returned to its home
Idaho has been rediscovered. Or least a welcome sign greeting travelers from Montana has been. The large sign greeting travelers on U.S. 93 headed into Idaho was returned Feb. 23 in much the same way it was removed late last month. Thieves swiped the large reflective sign under the cloak of darkness. Three individuals pulled to the side of the road, removed four bolts holding it to 4-x-4 posts, put it in the back of a pickup truck and drove away.
Classes on horizon for GIS program
Geographic Information Systems (GIS) provide an ability to combine collections of data -- datasets -- in an infinite number of ways. Knowledge of GIS technology helps people manage data in ways that everything can be seen, added to, manipulated or overlaid, typically on maps. ITD’s GIS Section is working with Kessler GIS to develop PC-based GIS training courses for department personnel. The courses are designed so that participants may attend from any desktop PC.
New Rideshare Web site improves 'pooling' rides
More than 1,230 Idahoans take advantage of Idaho’s free rideshare program – RideshareOnline.com. This week, the ride-matching experience just got better, thanks to the launch of a new Web site. Both individuals seeking ride matches and organizations managing regional or internal employee programs will be better able to personalize, track and manage their Rideshare matches through the new system.
Women in Construction plans Friday banquet
A banquet Friday (March 19) will formally conclude this week’s observance of Women in Construction. The dinner, to be held at the Owyhee Plaza, is sponsored by the Boise chapter of the national organization, whose mission is to enhance the success of women in the construction industry.
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