Meeting Minutes

February 1, 2006




Geoff Bornemann, City of Saratoga Springs (Vice-Chairman)

Peter Comenzo, Town of Rotterdam

Steve Feeney, Schenectady County

Rocky Ferraro, Capital District Regional Planning Commission

Mike Franchini, Albany County (Chairman)

Fred Howard, Rensselaer County

Stephen Iachetta, Albany County Airport Authority

Heather Malozzi, Town of Malta

Barb McHugh, Town of Clifton Park

Phil Pearson, Town of Colonie

Marybeth Pettit, City of Rensselaer

John Poorman, Capital District Transportation Committee (Secretary)

Jill Ross, NYS Thruway Authority

Deirdre Rudolph, City of Albany

Bernard Sisson, City of Schenectady

Erin Thomas, City of Cohoes

Kristina Younger, Capital District Transportation Authority




Mike Alba, Capital District Transportation Committee

Frank Bonafide, NYSDOT Region 1

William Gilbert, Town of Hadley

Jeff Lipnicky, Town of Bethlehem

Sandra Misiewicz, Capital District Transportation Committee

Kevin Novak, NYSDOT Region 1

Jason Planck, Advocate for Persons with Disability

Jason Purvis, Capital District Transportation Committee

Bill Roehr, City of Troy

Bill Springnether, Synthesis





Chairman Franchini opened the meeting at approximately 9:35 am.  He welcomed members and guests who introduced themselves.  Jason Planck, a resident of Schenectady, spoke to members about the issue of compliance with ADA requirements under Title II, Civic Access.  He cited the US Department of Justice’s efforts to enforce compliance through a number of investigations and municipal agreements.  He distributed DOJ literature as well as copies of ADA tools from Cornell University.  He reported that he is working with the cities of Schenectady and Albany on curb cut projects and suggested their consideration of applications to CDTC under the Spot program this year.  He also encouraged members to consider restoring a regional set-aside for curb cut compliance during the TIP update.



Bill Springnether from Synthesis provided a brief presentation of the completed Hadley main street study funded through the Linkage program.  The main street initiative relates to the Scenic Train project and plans for a competitive white water rafting venue in Hadley.


Action Items




Approval of the January 11, 2006 Meeting Minutes


The minutes of the January 11, 2006 meeting were then approved as written.




John Poorman reviewed the previously-distributed draft document for the 2006-08 UPWP.  The current draft includes financial tables for all parties and is complete with the exception of some “grayed out” summary tables in the text.  Members agreed to recommend approval by the Policy Board at its February 16, 2006 meeting to provide federal agencies with a month review period prior to the beginning of the fiscal year on April 1.  Members acknowledged that the draft UPWP will be modified by any action taken on the Linkage program later in the agenda.




S167, Oak Street over CSX Bridge Replacement


Frank Bonafide explained that the schedule for this project must be deferred.  The bridge is not currently eligible for HBRR funding as had been anticipated at the time of TIP adoption.  Members approved the deferral of engineering phases to 2008-09 and construction to 2009-10.  Action is required because the project is being removed from the three-year STIP portion of the TIP.


A474, Rehabilitation of the Wharf, Port of Albany


Members approved the programming of a new project for the use of an additional federal earmark of $650,000 ($0.813 M including match) for wharf rehabilitation and dredging at the Port of Albany.  [Secretary’s note:  the approval took the form of the addition of a new project, but should have been an amendment to existing project A471.  This error will be addressed at the next Planning Committee meeting.]


South Rensselaer Port Connector


Mr. Bonafide described this proposal, which was received too late to be included in the mailed material.  This is an earmarked allocation for the Rensselaer Port, providing alternative access for truck and emergency vehicles.  It will involve consolidating and eliminating several rail crossings on the high speed line between Rensselaer and New York.  The total cost is $6.200 M with initial engineering phases in the current year.  Members concurred with this action.  Due to the nature of the action, the amendment requires action by the Policy Board at its February 16 meeting.




Sandy Misiewicz described the previously e-mailed Linkage evaluation material for the fifteen submissions for 2006-07 funding.  Submissions are from the Albany Housing Authority, town of Ballston, town of Bethlehem, city of Cohoes, town of East Greenbush, town of Guilderland, a joint submission from the town of Guilderland and the town of Princetown, the town of Malta, city of Rensselaer, town of Rotterdam, city of Saratoga Springs, city of Schenectady, village of Scotia, city of Troy and village of Voorheesville.  The total federal share requested is $423,500; the UPWP has reserved $200,000 for consultant work and $100,000 for staff effort.


Discussion took place regarding the two primary options provided by the staff and the evaluation team.  Members focused on option 2; agreement was reached to program option 2, with the refinement the Bethlehem proposal would be included with partial funding from 2006-07 and the balance from the 2007-08 Linkage program. Members’ concurrence with this option results in a modification to the draft 2006-08 UPWP to be distributed to the Policy Board for action on February 16.





Mr. Poorman noted that no agenda item was included for this discussion, but suggested that CDTC should include a presentation on the subject at the February 16 Policy Board meeting.  The comment period is set to end on February 24.  He raised the question whether CDTC should submit formal comments and suggested a letter submittal rather than a formal resolution.  He noted that the major points of a CDTC comment would focus on support for the master plan effort, indicate that cooperative effort is needed, cite funding concerns, and press for renewed partnerships.  Members agreed to request Mr. Poorman to prepare and distribute a draft letter for consideration at the February 16 meeting.







Mr. Poorman noted his recent presentations on the Colloquy at the Transportation Research Board Annual Meeting and on CDTC’s practices to the World Bank and World Resources Institute.  He also reported on his ongoing contact with the NYSDOT Main Office encouraging an early decision on the schedule and process for the next TIP/STIP development.




Rocky Ferraro reported that the contract has been signed for the joint CEG-CDRPC-CDTC-SUNYA effort on fiscal impacts of the alternative growth scenarios from New Visions 2030.  He noted that age cohort projections are on CDRPC’s web site and reported on the new contract for the Foreign Trade Zone marketing.  He encouraged communities to report residential building activity for 2010 Census preparation.




Kristina Younger reported that the APWA has named the Saratoga Springs station the “Project of the Year.”  CDTA is currently reviewing proposals for its major bus procurement from Gillig, New Flyer and Orion.  The TDP element for Saratoga Springs is close to being ready for public review; Schenectady will be next.  CDTA is also progressing the first phase of the Schenectady station project with initial work on access issues and scoping for the larger project.  CDTA has received BRT earmarks for four years and will be looking to amend the TIP accordingly.


Mr. Poorman noted that FTA’s recent guidance on the new “Small Starts” program includes definitions that would be broad enough to cover the NY5 BRT project, if it made sense for the Capital District to pursue these funds.




Mr. Bonafide reported that Region 1 is progressing a programming exercise to respond to budget changes from SAFETEA-LU and the passage of the state bond.  He also reported on recent organizational changes; the regions are now considered part of a “Delivery Division.”


New York State Thruway Authority


Jill Ross noted that the Thruway has released the draft EIS for the Interchange 23 to 24 project and plans a public meeting / hearing on the project in mid-March.


Albany County Airport Authority


Steve Iachetta reported on progress on six airport improvement projects including terminal security checkpoint improvements, drainage, operations & maintenance, and the planned completion of the runway 19 extension this summer.  He noted that the noise compatibility program with the town of Colonie is considered a national model.  The airport is also heavily involved with Clean Community initiatives and the use of best available technology for protection of water sources.  The authority has named David Lang as its new chairman.





Bids and Lettings


Mr. Rettig reported that there were no bid openings scheduled for February.  Upcoming is a traffic signal regional project.





The next Planning Committee meeting was tentatively scheduled for 9:30 a.m. on March 1, 2006.  Mr. Poorman reminded members that the new meeting schedule will begin in April, with Planning Committee meetings in April and May and a Policy Board meeting the first week of June. There being no other business, the meeting was adjourned at approximately 11:40 a.m.



Respectfully submitted,





John P. Poorman