Monday, April 12, 2010 @ 5:00 p.m. Summary Report
Roll call of SNEC Board Members:
Commissioner Weekly was absent. This was his second consecutive absence.
Item 6: Selection of SNEC Board Vice Chair:
Councilman Ricki Barlow was selected as Vice Chair
Item 7: Senator Horsford discussed his plan to contact members of the Nevada Congressional Delegation to fill the seat vacated by Shannon Raborn.
Item 8: F Street project update including I-15 and I-515:
Susan Martinovich, Director of Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT) gave an update on the F Street Project. She stated that a TIGER grant application was submitted to fund the project but was not awarded. Ms. Martinovich further stated that the F Street project continues to be a “High Priority” project for NDOT and they will attempt to find other sources of revenue to fund the project.
Ms. Martinovich stated that the F Street project is on the State’s work plan but is not currently rated “high priority” in that plan. After questioning, she also stated that the F Street project is eligible for Question 10 (Q-10) funding.
Ms. Martinovich admitted that NDOT had not contacted the Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) to express the importance of the F Street project.
Senator Horsford suggested a letter be sent to RTC on behalf of the SNEC Board concerning the urgency of the project. Shondra Armstrong suggested a letter be sent on behalf of NDOT. Councilman Barlow agreed to send a letter to RTC. Councilman Cherchio will also. Assemblyman Munford would like to see letters sent from the community, to show their serious concern for the potential delay of reopening F Street. Susan Martinovich agreed and will follow up with requests.
David Bowers from the City of Las Vegas Public Works was present. He reported that PBS&J was awarded the engineering contract and are working on 30% design effort, which is expected to be complete and approved by the end of the year. Senator Horsford introduced the civil engineers from PBS&J;Wayne Horlacker and Angelo Spada are the principals on the project. City of Las Vegas (CLV) and NDOT staff met with PBS&J staff on April 6 for a kick off meeting.
Jennica Finnerty of NDOT stated there is a plan to have a combined NDOT Project workshop for the community at Doolittle Community Center at the end of June. The goal is to bring the community up-to-date and to discuss the F Street project and related projects. A drawing of the proposed new F Street off ramp from I-515 was presented and discussed with the board.
Senator Horsford noted the significance of the reopening of F Street as an important link to I-515, via the F Street interchange.
Councilman Barlow confirmed that $2.5 million has been set aside by the City of Las Vegas for the design of the F Street reopening. The City is required to contribute a total of $22.5 million for the entire project.
Item 9: F Street Community Outreach:
Councilman Barlow stated that at the last City Council meeting he submitted an agenda item to not hire a marketing firm to conduct outreach for the F Street project. He stated the he would like to work directly with the community and therefore suggested the outreach be conducted in-house. The City Council approved is proposal. Councilman Barlow introduced David Riggleman, Communications Director for the City of Las Vegas, to give a presentation on the proposed outreach plan. Mr.
Riggleman stated the plan intends to:
Engage community organizations: SNEC, F St. Coalition, West Las Vegas Advisory Board, Faith Based organizations, Small Businesses
Website and social media (twitter: Fstreetlasvegas, Facebook: F Street Las Vegas, website: www.lasvegasnevada.gov/fstreet email:FStreetConnection@lasvegasnevada.gov
Community Media ( Sentinel Voice, 88.1, Urban Voice, Las Vegas Weekly and others)
Traditional outreach ( door hangers, flyers, community meetings)
Phone Bank (to be set up), direct number 229-2207
Mr. Riggleman promised a commitment to ensure communication is taking place and that a true partnership with the community is maintained.
Shondra Armstrong stated that this decision should have been discussed with the community before it was made. No one on the SNEC board was advised that the item was going before the city council. She feels these types of unilateral actions just continue the pattern of the community not feeling they can trust the city.
Brandon Greene said he felt blind-sided by the action of Councilman Barlow and the city council. He expressed his concern about the lack of transparency and good will on behalf of the City of Las Vegas.
Councilman Barlow stated he understood the concerns of the board members but felt that by having the City directly involved with the community outreach they can ensure more effective movement on the project. He felt there was no need for a third party.
Item 10: Continued Review of SNEC Community Economic Development Plan:
Senator Horsford announced formation of subcommittees: F Street Planning: Councilman Barlow Assemblyman Munford Shondra Summers-Armstrong
Community Development Plan:
Shondra Armstrong asked if SNEC would now go to monthly meetings. She also wanted to know if the SNEC could have the City of Las Vegas make a presentation on their desire to expand the redevelopment zone. She stated her concern about the possible impact on the work of SNEC. Senator Horsford stated he would like to see how the subcommittees progress before changing the meeting schedule. He noted that the subcommittees would meet more frequently and that because elected officials sit on those subcommittees they would need to be publicly noticed with agendas.
Senator Horsford asked for agenda item at the next SNEC meeting to have a presentation on the proposed expansion of redevelopment zones in the Cities of Las Vegas and North Las Vegas by respective redevelopment agencies.
Councilman Barlow stated that he will ensure that the community is aware of changes in the Redevelopment Area and plans public meetings to address the proposed changes. Senator Horsford urged the SNEC Board to get some type of project completed in the Focus Area. Assemblyman Munford asked when MLK be completed and Councilman Barlow stated in July/August 2010. Councilman Barlow stated the street will have beautiful landscaping making it one of the best looking MLK Streets in the nation.
Item 11: New Business:
Brandon Greene read a letter addressed to Senator Horsford and the SNEC Board. The letter said that F Street participants have been marginalized in SNEC Board matters. He feels there is no transparency in the decision making process, and that the SNEC is an example of nothing more than political grand standing. Specifically he is concerned that the SNEC board remains powerless and that Ricki Barlow’s actions represent the type of willful deception which got us into or present situation. He feels as though the community is always in the dark, reacting to decisions made by elected officials instead of being part of the decision making process.
One major concern was the timeline on the completion of F Street and future funding. Also whether the city and NDOT would pull-out or try to place the project to the back. Munford stated that at he next legislation meeting, he and Horsford will make sure AB304 Amendment is even firmer and rooted.
Another concern was the lack of entering and exiting on the freeway off D Street. Ms. Finnerty replied that the F Street Connector, part of the I-515 Widening Project, would include access to and from West Las Vegas.
Ms. Duncan discussed redevelopment of historic West Las Vegas and the lack of funding despite the availability of federal stimulus funds. She noted the unresponsive nature of the City of Las Vegas to assist with funding important and practical green projects. Ms. Duncan also stated that the Regional Transportation Commission was negligent in the closing of F Street.
Another citizen asked why NDOT had to repeat the NEPA (environmental document) process. Ms. Finnerty stated it was required by the Federal Highway Administration. Ms. Armstrong asked if NDOT had asked for a waiver of the NEPA process to move the process along. Ms. Finnerty said they had not.
Next Meeting: Monday, June 7, 2010, 5:00 p.m.
Southern Nevada Economic Community Board
April 12, 2010