Meeting Minutes

November 1, 2006




Geoff Bornemann, City of Saratoga Springs

Judy Breselor, City of Troy

Steve Feeney, Schenectady County

Michael Franchini, Albany County (Chairman)

Fred Howard, Rensselaer County

Steve Iachetta, Albany County Airport Authority

Heather Mallozzi, Town of Malta

Barb McHugh, Town of Clifton Park

Phil Pearson, Town of Colonie

John Poorman, Capital District Transportation Committee (Secretary)

Dave Rettig, NYSDOT Region 1

Dede Rudolph, City of Albany

Phil Serafino, New York State Thruway Authority

Bernard Sisson, City of Schenectady

Michael Valentine, Saratoga County

Kristina Younger, Capital District Transportation Authority




Frank Bonafide, NYSDOT Region 1

Patrick Campbell, CDTA

George Leveille, Town of Bethlehem

Sandra Misiewicz, Capital District Transportation Committee

Philip Parella, Jr., CDTA

Jason Purvis, Capital District Transportation Committee

Chuck Rappazzo, NYSDOT Main Office

Deb Stacey, Capital District Transportation Committee

Steve Szanto, Luther Forest Technology Campus





Chairman Franchini opened the meeting at approximately 9:35 am.  He welcomed members and guests who introduced themselves.  There were no requests from visitors to speak to the committee.



Action Items




Approval of the October 4, 2006 Meeting Minutes


The minutes of the October 4, 2006 meeting were approved as written.





Sandy Misiewicz reviewed the previously-distributed assessment of 2007-08 Linkage proposals.  The review committee determined that all five submissions meet the program requirements, and the staff has reviewed the funding levels requested to ensure that the scope of work is affordable at the requested budgets.


The staff recommendation is to fund all five proposals:  Railroad Avenue Corridor Study (Albany County/ Colonie/ Guilderland); Broadway Transportation, Access and Land Use Improvement Study (Menands); Neighborhood Master Plan for the Hamlet of Guilderland Center (Guilderland); Exit 9 Land Use and Transportation Plan (Clifton Park / Halfmoon); and NYS Thruway Exit 26 & I-890 Land Use and Transportation Study (Rotterdam).


These studies total $122,850 in CDTC funding along with $40,950 in local cash match.  The balance of Linkage funding reserved in the UPWP ($46,150) will be assigned to CDTC for oversight and technical involvement in the Linkage studies.


Members approved the recommended package of studies.





Spot Improvement Program Project Evaluation


Jason Purvis reviewed the results of the Spot Program solicitation.  Eight proposals were received totaling $302,744.  Members discussed the two options offered by the staff.  Option 2 would fund all but two projects – the Southbury / Lapp / Crescent Rd improvements (Clifton Park) if the Planning Committee wished to limit awards to one per municipality, and the Physically Challenged Fishing Access / Trail (Halfmoon) because of safety, right of way concerns and limited access and connectivity benefits.


Members discussed providing conditional approval to the Halfmoon project as another option.  After discussion, members agreed to fund all eight proposals without condition.  (It was acknowledged that all projects must clear all hurdles to be implemented.)





Change in NHS Designation


John Poorman reviewed the previously-distributed proposed change in National Highway System route designation in the City of Saratoga Springs.  Based on staff review, it is appropriate to consider removing the NHS designation from Washington Street (NY 29) between West Avenue and Broadway and to assign the NHS designation to West Avenue between NY 29 and Church St and to assign the NHS designation to Church Street and Van Dam Street from West Avenue to Broadway.  Traffic levels and truck volumes on the revised designation are higher than on the current routing.


Members approved the change.  Action will be requested by NYSDOT from the Federal Highway Administration.


Funding Allocations


Mr. Poorman reviewed the previously-distributed summary of the allocation of NYSDOT Region 1 funding to CDTC for use in TIP fiscal constraint work.  Members accepted these values as working numbers of TIP budgets for the 2007-12 TIP Update.


CMAQ Program Options


Mr. Poorman reviewed the status of the CMAQ programming discussion, which includes a prior agreement by the Planning Committee to work through program-level distribution of funding by project category prior to any consideration of soliciting for specific projects.


Review of programming options indicates that ITS, bike/ped, operations, diesel retrofit and diesel replacement are the leading candidates based on CDTC’s New Visions plan, expected air quality benefits and SAFETEA-LU emphasis areas.


Members reviewed four conceptual “bundles” of CMAQ funding commitments, ranging from ones that focus on operations and vehicle replacements to ones that fund a number of project categories.


Mr. Poorman stated his goal of at least reducing the range of options for presentation to the Policy Board in December.


Kristina Younger stressed CDTA’s financial needs for vehicle replacement in its new ongoing fleet replacement strategy and noted that transit projects are generally successful in getting CMAQ funds obligated.  Members also acknowledged the value of expanding regional traffic operations efforts and the SAFETEA-LU requirement that diesel retrofit projects be given priority in MPO programming of CMAQ funds.


Through the discussion, a fifth hybrid option emerged.  It would assign $8 M in new funds ($29.527 total) to operations; $8 M in new funds ($11.350 total) to hybrid bus replacements; $2 M in new funds to a set-aside for off-road and other fleet diesel retrofits; $1 M to bike/ped projects; and $5 M to roundabouts / intersection projects.  After a brief ensuing discussion, members agreed to forward the hybrid option to the Policy Board as a recommended bundle for public review.






Discussion Items





Mr. Poorman briefly noted the continued work on the fiscal impact study of alternative futures with CEG, CDRPC and SUNYA.  He also reported on the work of the Finance Task Force.





Bids and Lettings


Dave Rettig stated that there was only one local job bid – a spot improvement in Castleton.





CDTC Staff


Mr. Poorman noted the success of the Freight Symposium and progress on many Linkage studies.


Capital District Transportation Authority


Ms. Younger reported that CDTA has named Ray Melleady as the new executive director.


New York State Department of Transportation


Mr. Rettig reported Region 1 is progressing its program update with resident engineers raising culvert conditions as a priority.  Projects moving along include Exit 6 and the twin bridges.


New York State Thruway Authority


Phil Serafino noted that there was nothing significant to report.


Albany County Airport Authority


Steve Iachetta reported on new direct service to Tampa, on wrapping up the runway 19 project and on opening bids on Empie Manufacturing.


Linkage/Local Planning Activities


Members commended Phil Pearson on his successful career and his contributions to CDTC.  Mr. Pearson is retiring at the end of the year.





Mr. Poorman noted that the national commission is holding a public hearing November 15 in New York City and requested authorization to prepare comments on behalf of CDTC if time permits.  Members granted the permission.





The Policy Board will meet December 7, 2006.  The next Planning Committee meeting was scheduled for 9:30 a.m. on January 3, 2007.  There being no other business, the meeting was adjourned at approximately 12:10 p.m.



Respectfully submitted,





John P. Poorman