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01-14-2009 1 LAS CRUCES METROPOLITAN PLANNING ORGANIZATION 2 POLICY COMMITTEE (PC) MEETING 3 4 Following are the minutes from the MPO Policy Committee (PC) meeting held on Wednesday, 5 January 14, 2009 at 5 00 p m at City Hall Council Chambers, 200 N Church St., Las Cruces, 6 New Mexico 7 8 MEMBERS PRESENT Mayor Michael Cadena, Chair (Town of Mesilla) 9 Councillor Dolores Archuleta, Vice Chair (City of Las Cruces) 10 Councilor Gil Jones (CLC) 11 Commissioner Karen Perez (DAC) 12 Councillor Sharon Thomas (CLC) 13 Trustee Carlos Arzabal (Town of Mesilla) 14 Trustee Sam Bernal (Town of Mesilla) 15 Leticia Duarte-Benavidez (DAC) 16 Scott Krahling (DAC) 17 18 STAFF PRESENT Tom Murphy (Las Cruces MPO) 19 Andy Hume (Las Cruces MPO) 20 Caerllion Thomas (Las Cruces MPO) 21 Charles Gruver (CLC — RoadRUNNER Transit) 22 Becky Eich, Transcriptionist 23 24 OTHERS PRESENT Zach Libbin Michael Gallagher (NMDOT) 25 Herb Torres (LCPS) Paul Howard (DAC) 26 Rob Richardson Jared Lee 27 Ben Woods (NMSU) Andrew Guerra 28 Frank Guzman (NMDOT) Emile Bourdet 29 Ray Matthew (NMDOT) Jason Cardon 30 Efren Meza (EI Paso MPO) Alison Lee Bills 31 Patty Hughs George Pearson 32 Chandler Duncan James Searls 33 34 1. CALL TO ORDER — (5 00 p.m ) 35 36 Cadena Good evening and we'll go ahead and call this MPO meeting of January 37 14th, 2009 at the Las Cruces City Council to order 38 39 2. ELECTION OF OFFICERS 40 41 Cadena Staff The next agenda item is election of officers 42 43 Murphy- That's correct, sir It's nominations for Chair 44 45 Cadena Are there any nominations from the bench? 46 1 I Archuleta Mr Acting-Chairman, I nominate Mayor Cadena as Chair 2 3 Arzabal Second 4 5 Cadena Are there any other nominations? All in favor 6 7 ALL COMMITTEE MEMBERS -AYE 8 9 Cadena Motion passes We also need to nominate a Vice Chair and I believe it's 10 the City of Las Cruces' turn in the rotation 11 12 Perez I'd like to nominate Councilor Archuleta 13 14 Bernal Second 15 16 Archuleta Mr Chairman, I appreciate that offer but I believe Councilor Thomas has 17 not had the opportunity 18 19 S Thomas That's a reason 20 21 Archuleta I will accept it, but I thought since she had not had the opportunity, you are 22 one of the new ones, but I will accept it if you don't. 23 24 S Thomas I think you should go ahead and do it. 25 26 Archuleta All right. 27 28 Bernal Second 29 30 Cadena All right, any other nominations? All in favor 31 32 ALL COMMITTEE MEMBERS - AYE 33 34 Cadena Very good Thanks to all of you 35 36 3 CONFLICT OF INTEREST INQUIRY BY CHAIR 37 38 Cadena As you know the conflict of interest inquiry Is there anyone on the Policy 39 Committee or staff that needs to make a comment on any conflict of 40 potential perceived and/or conflict of interest? 41 42 S Thomas I would like to make a comment. Because we have a new member, I need 43 to say again that my daughter works for the MPO Leticia probably didn't 44 know that. I've done that at every meeting Before I accepted 45 appointment to this Committee though we checked that out and so I don't 46 say it at every meeting, but since we have new people here 2 1 2 Cadena That's understandable and we appreciate you recognizing that. Actually 3 as Chair and a long time member of the Committee I'd like to commend 4 your daughter for all the hard work she does on this Committee as a staff 5 member 6 7 S Thomas Thank you and thank you for her too 8 9 Cadena. I'm not sure if we have anywhere on staff to introduce the new member, 10 but maybe this would be the appropriate time 11 12 Perez. Mr Chairman if I could introduce Commissioner Krahling as coming in as 13 well 14 15 Cadena Okay, why don't we have Commissioner Perez introduce her colleagues 16 who are the new members 17 18 Perez: Thank you I'll try and sit close to the mike Commissioner Krahling is 19 sitting poor guy comes in the back. I didn't want him to feel awkward 20 coming up front so I singled him out. This is Commissioner Scott Krahling 21 is District 4, and Commissioner Benavidez who is the new Chairman of 22 the County Commission is District 5 Welcome to both of you 23 24 Cadena Who's the third City member? 25 26 Arzabal Councilman Jones 27 28 Cadena Okay, so he's still a member, right? 29 30 Murphy- Yes, I haven't received word otherwise 31 32 Cadena All right, well welcome and congratulations to the new Commissioners and 33 Committee members I would encourage you if you haven't already done 34 so to at some point there's a lot of information here and at some point 35 it's probably you're colleagues will tell you, there's a lot of information 36 You might want to meet with staff at some point to try to get caught up on 37 some of these things that we're working on It may seem overwhelming, 38 but really it's not, once you get a hold of everything that's going on 39 40 4. PUBLIC COMMENT 41 42 Cadena Any public comments? 43 44 Lubin Hello, my name is Zach Lubin I wanted to make some quick comments 45 about condition of the bicycle facilities in Las Cruces and ask you for your 46 support in improving the situation in Las Cruces and improving the 3 I conditions of the streets I would like to see more bike paths, just 2 markings on the roads that are wide enough Also, for the Policy 3 Committee my interest with this Committee would be at the last BPAC 4 meeting it was discussed that we do have a Complete Streets Policy to go 5 with new construction and new markings and new design of the roads, but 6 when those new streets are put into place that's not considered And the 7 comment at that meeting why they had not the reason that they didn't 8 put new markings Las Alturas turns into Don Roser they didn't put 9 bicycle path in because they were trying to discourage bikes from going 10 there, so they put inadequate facilities in They didn't put a bike lane 11 They didn't put a wide enough road They were trying to discourage bikes 12 from going there which is contrary to the complete streets idea and that 13 policy that you guys have And so I'd just like to make those comments 14 and ask you for your support. 15 16 Cadena I think I can as Chair represent all three entities saying that's a renewed 17 interest in bike transportation, bike paths and I think we're all supportive, 18 certainly this Committee is About that specific street, I don't know exactly 19 what you're talking about. Let me see if staff can reply to that though 20 21 Hume Thank you Mr Chair This is Andy Hume, MPO staff Don Roser was the 22 subject of some discussion at the BPAC meeting last month Initially what 23 happened was on the Bicycle Facilities Plan for some reason that stretch 24 was overlooked on the plan and City staff made it clear that they look at 25 that plan when they're developing designs for new roadways It wasn't on 26 the plan and so facilities were not adequately called for out on that 27 roadway and the plans for that roadway Mr Lubin is correct, there is a 28 Complete Streets Policy that this body has enacted, and I believe a month 29 after we enacted it the Town of Mesilla also enacted a Complete Streets 30 Policy as well As of this point, the City of Las Cruces or Dona Ana 31 County has not acted on a Complete Streets Ordinance at this point which 32 would affect roadway development including bicycle lanes in the City Of 33 course, the policy rather from the MPO body was a suggestion to the local 34 entities to enact something similar Since the BPAC meeting last month 35 however, MPO staff has met with engineering staff from the City of Las 36 Cruces and we will be reviewing some revised stripping plans for that 37 roadway which should include bicycle lanes on Don Roser from University 38 to the mall So we hope that that will address that particular issue In 39 looking ahead long-term, Mr Lubin is correct that there are some issues 40 that we're looking at from the Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee, 41 and we will be bringing those forward to this group as part of Transport 42 2040, our long range plan that we're working on 43 44 Cadena. Thank you Andy for that response Any questions or comments from the 45 Committee? 46 4 I S Thomas May I add something? Thank you The Bicycle Facilities, we did have an 2 open public meeting here in this room in December that Andy presided at 3 and helped with and it is going to be coming up at a work sessions, at the 4 February work session at the City, so you know I hope the BPAC people 5 will come and be part of that discussion and see if we can't move towards 6 Complete Streets and some of the other things that are your goals 7 8 Cadena Any other comments? 9 10 Archuleta Mr Chairman, I just want to make sure that I heard right because that's 11 what I wanted to hear Don Roser from the extension of Don Roser 12 then to the University is where the bike lanes will be, but not the existing 13 road? 14 15 Hume Actually, thank you for the clarification It will be the entire length We're 16 looking at from University all the way to Mesilla Valley Mall 17 18 Archuleta Okay Thank you 19 20 Cadena. Thank you, any other comments on that from the Committee? Anyone in 21 the public? Are there any other public comments? 22 23 5 CONSENT AGENDA 24 25 Cadena All right, let's move onto the consent agenda 26 27 S Thomas Yes, Mr Chair 28 29 Murphy- Mr Chair, staff has one change to the agenda Discussion item 82 30 Committee Training Cluster Subdivisions Dr Jack Wright is ill We'd like 31 to remove that from the agenda today 32 33 Cadena Is there a motion to approve the agenda and the consent agenda as 34 amended? 35 36 Bernal So moved 37 38 S Thomas I need to make a comment about the minutes I'm listed as absent from 39 the last meeting but I was there 40 41 Cadena. Will staff note that? 42 43 Murphy- Yes, Mr Chair 44 45 Cadena All right. There was a motion to accept the agenda and the consent 46 agenda as amended Is there a second? 5 1 2 Arzabal Second 3 4 Cadena All right. All in favor? 5 6 ALL COMMITTEE MEMBERS - AYE 7 8 Cadena And opposed? All right 9 10 6 * APPROVAL OF MINUTES - November 12, 2008 11 12 7 ACTION ITEMS 13 14 71 Resolution 09-01 A Resolution certifying compliance with the open 15 meetings act for the 2009 calendar year by the Las Cruces Metropolitan 16 Planning Organization 17 18 7.2. Resolution 09-02 A Resolution approving an amendment to the 0909 19 UPWP authorizing a Safe Routes to School Coordinator 20 21 Cadena Let's move onto the action items I believe 7 1 was on the consent. Let's 22 move onto 7 2 Staff 23 24 Murphy- Mr Chair, members of the Committee, Resolution 09-02 is a resolution 25 approving amendment to the 08-09 unified planning work program for the 26 MPO What this will do would be to authorize a staff position for a Safe 27 Routes to School Coordinator At your last meeting in November, you did 28 approve a TIP amendment for that funding It is anticipated that this 29 funding will come entirely from a Federal Safe Routes to School grant, so 30 there will be no local match required on this, but it is a requirement that we 31 do add it to our UPWP in order to execute that. We are currently finalizing 32 some details on some of the mechanics of how that will take place, but 33 either of the methods to get the contract with the DOT would require this 34 amendment, so we want to move forward with the amendment at this 35 point. I can stand for any questions 36 37 Cadena First of all, let the record show that Councilor Jones did arrive at the 38 meeting These are the kinds of grants we like where there is no local 39 match Are there any other comments, questions? 40 41 Arzabal Mr Mayor, if there are none, I'd like to move to approve the resolution 09- 42 02 43 44 Perez Second 45 46 Cadena Okay Does staff want to do a roll call on this resolution? 6 1 2 Murphy- Certainly Commissioner Krahling 3 4 Krahling Aye 5 6 Murphy Commissioner Perez. 7 8 Perez. Aye 9 10 Murphy- Mayor Pro-Tem Archuleta. 11 12 Archuleta Aye 13 14 Murphy- Councilor Jones 15 16 Jones Yes 17 18 Murphy- Trustee Bernal 19 20 Bernal Yes 21 22 Murphy- Trustee Arzabal 23 24 Arzabal Yes 25 26 Murphy- Commissioner Benavidez. 27 28 Benavidez. Yes 29 30 Murphy- Councilor Thomas 31 32 S Thomas Yes 33 34 Murphy* Chair 35 36 Cadena Yes Thank you 37 38 Cadena I believe we're at discussion items 39 40 Perez Mr Chairman, can I ask a quick question about the Safe Routes to 41 School 42 43 Cadena Sure, definitely 44 45 Perez, Are there other schools proposed for pilot programs this year for this 46 particular program? 7 1 2 Hume At this point in time we only have done one pilot project with Hillrise 3 Elementary The results of that are what actually got us this position with 4 the state, so as far as additional pilot projects, we don't plan on any What 5 we plan on doing is doing district wide implementation if at all possible of 6 this program But we certainly want to look at those schools in particular 7 that are really sort of ripe for the picking so to speak and get programs 8 started in those schools Loma Heights Elementary for one is one that is 9 pretty much ready to go But as far as pilot projects per se, no we're done 10 with those 11 12 Perez And if we wanted to propose one, what would be the proper mechanism 13 for doing that? Can we as a body say these are schools that we've 14 noticed is this a proper form to bring that up? I'm asking because my 15 son is at Zia Middle School Last year I said wonderful things about 16 Hillrise because he was at Hillrise last year But I tried to find a route from 17 Zia to the nice beautiful bike lane on University and couldn't find one And 18 1 thought is this a mechanism that we can look at this and say is this a 19 group that can look at that and say we know that we have certain schools 20 especially in Mesilla that are set up for the walking and the biking and 21 what not. It seems like it's a satellite kind unto itself 22 23 Hume Absolutely The purpose of this Committee is to give direction to staff So 24 if there are particular aspects or projects that you would like us to look at 25 for Safe Routes to School, certainly you can pass those along I don't 26 think it'll take any action by the Committee per se, but certainly would be 27 good to have direction It will be really good once we get that position 28 filled full time because they can look at all 30 schools that are eligible for 29 Safe Routes to School funding within the district. And then perhaps even 30 start looking at the portion of Gadsden district that we go into as well But 31 if you can point out a couple of schools that you think are just really ripe to 32 move into, that's certainly direction that you can pass onto us 33 34 Perez. Thank you very much Thank Mr Chair 35 36 Cadena Sure, very good, anyone else? All right, let's go ahead and move on then 37 38 8 DISCUSSION ITEMS 39 40 8 1 Report on new LCPS High School siting 41 42 Cadena. Discussion items and I think the first one is a report on the new Las 43 Cruces Public Schools High School siting I know there has been several 44 public meetings, but this particular body, because we're involved with 45 transportation, has had an interest in that so, we appreciate our own staff 8 I from the MPO and those from Las Cruces Public Schools for taking their 2 time to kind of enlighten us to what's happening 3 4 Murphy- Mr Chairman, members of the Committee, tonight we have Herb Torres 5 form the Las Cruces Public Schools and Rob Richardson from Bohanna- 6 Houston to jointly give you a presentation on the selection process for the 7 new high school site 8 9 Torres Thank you Mr Chairman, members of the Committee We're going to try 10 to take you through a couple of slides and we've provided you with a 11 hardcopy of all of the slides that are on this particular presentation Some 12 of the slides you may not be as interested in because they have to do with 13 other issues other than transportation, so we're going to skip through 14 those unless you choose to ask to take some time with them Those 15 dealing with utilities and drainage because we've incorporated this 16 particular presentation from other presentations that we're doing out in the 17 community throughout the next several months as we proceed to deal with 18 the information piece out to the community regarding the new high school 19 So certainly stop me at any point that you wish to stop me when it 20 comes to any particular slide I'm going to ask Mr Rob Richardson from 21 Bohanna-Houston who is our consultant on the engineering side of some 22 of the development that we're doing already on the site and to the site 23 That is as we get to certain slides that have to do with the engineering 24 piece, he's much more expert in that than I am and I'll ask him to certainly 25 chime in on that if you don't mind And again, if you have a question on 26 any particular slide or any particular piece of information, if you wish to 27 stop me at that point certainly do so and we'll try to address any questions 28 or comments that you wish to make 29 Just to give you a little bit of background very quickly, one of the 30 things that the district has been doing for some time is beginning to select 31 a site process and bring in the community if you would to the site selection 32 process so that you know and the community knows that it wasn't 33 something that we selected this site without considering other potential 34 sites and kinds of factors we took into play when in fact we were selecting 35 this site There was a committee that was put together I did not include 36 the members of the Committee on this particular presentation At some of 37 our forum meetings we've included their names and the makeup of that 38 committee It did include City staff, County staff It included members 39 from the general public at large and also certainly members and staff from 40 the Public School District as well 41 There were several meetings that were held as you can tell during 42 the 2007 year In addition to that, we had two public forums regarding the 43 site selection process, one that was held at our board room on October 44 22nd, and one that was done a week later at Onate High School 45 particularly in that area because of the location of the new high school 46 potential 9 1 2 Jones Mr Chairman 3 4 Cadena Yes 5 6 Jones Mr Torres in addition to those two public meetings you mentioned before, 7 1 know you briefed or we had a joint City/School Board meeting where this 8 was discussed in this body here Do you recall whether there were other 9 dates that the City Council was updated as to the site selection process 10 over and above that particular meeting? 11 12 Torres Specifically the Council as a Council at a public gathering in conjunction 13 with the School Board, I do not recall I do know that City staff has been 14 working with the district staff as has some County staff as well been 15 working with the district staff and as a result of those meetings City staff 16 particularly City Manager Terrance Moore has included information to the 17 City Council in his reports that he gives on a weekly report out to City 18 Council and to the public regarding some of those discussions 19 20 Jones And if I may, one other question Did you similar to the vein that 21 whereby we met with the School Board as Councilors from the City, did 22 you have a similar presentation or meeting with the County Commission? 23 24 Torres We have not at this point. It is our intent to pursue that as well 25 26 Jones Thank you 27 28 Cadena. I think the intent Dr Torres we are the Transportation Committee for 29 the County, so I guess what we're suggesting for any future schools that 30 this Committee itself and the staff within the MPO be included you know 31 from day one and I think it'll help ease the transition into all of these things 32 without I don't think there's a serious I don't know if there's a serious 33 concern, I think it's more of just an issue of the communication between 34 this entity and everything else 35 36 Torres Absolutely And Mr Chair we'll certainly take that comment into 37 consideration as we develop additional meetings and information pieces 38 39 Cadena Thank you 40 41 Torres Thank you This particular slide demonstrates if you will kind of an 42 overview of the City and its outlining areas as well as the four sites that 43 were considered at the time that the discussion was going on I know that 44 it may be difficult to point out where these particular everything on this 45 particular slide, but important to this particular slide if you'll notice, on the 46 far left corner was one of the sites which was the far west site off of the I- 10 1 10 west that was being considered up above the escarpment in that area 2 And then over here on the far right of the slide, this in particular is the 3 current site that we're talking about that is off of Dripping Springs Road 4 close to the Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum The other two sites that 5 were being considered were these two particular sites that were part of the 6 Presidio's Annexation and development that the City and a developer 7 were discussing in which the particular developer had made some 8 indications to us about a willingness to designate some land for school 9 sites there as a part of his development. And obviously one of the things 10 that we were looking in that was also talking about potential for donation of 11 that land which is something that we're always looking for as far as trying 12 to acquire the cheapest land sites that we might, that work within the 13 parameters of what we're looking for, for a school site So that's what 14 primarily this map is showing you here 15 This next map does the same thing, it's a little clearer, but in 16 addition to that what it also shows are the existing three high schools, the 17 three comprehensive high schools that we have And this map has kind of 18 has been flipped around from the other map, but you'll notice that Mayfield 19 High School and Onate High School and Las Cruces High School which is 20 located right here is where those current comprehensive high schools are 21 located The west side site is still here and then we still have the other 22 two sites that were being considered as part of that Presidio's area, and 23 then here is in fact the site there that is off the Dripping Springs Road site 24 This is simply and you have a hardcopy that I provided to the 25 Committee members, hardcopy that gives you much more I'm sorry, 26 this is not the one you have a hardcopy of You have a hardcopy of 27 another slide I'll get to that one in a minute This simply is a rating sheet 28 that was used by the Committee to determine the factors that needed to 29 be considered by the Committee when they were looking at the various 30 sites Bottom line is we looked at physical characteristics, we looked at 31 location proximity to a number of factors, we looked at cost that was 32 related for the site as far as obtaining it and any infrastructure, and then 33 we looked at the timeframe, in other words were any of these sites issues 34 for the district as far as when the district wanted to open the doors to 35 those schools as far as being able to be deliverable And then the 36 committee went through a rating of each of these sites and if you'll notice 37 site one and two which were the sites that were within the Presidio's 38 Annexation were actually rated the highest, and then the fourth which was 39 the last of all the sites was the one on the west side, and then this one at 40 Dripping Springs was actually rated third These two sites became non- 41 factors quite frankly because of an issue that was raised in which the 42 developer was not going to be able to pursue in granting any of that land 43 to the school district on a timely basis because of some issues that came 44 up regarding the State Land Office and his development. And so 45 therefore, they were removed from further consideration after we had 46 gone through most of this process 11 I Very quickly, these are some slides that we've been showing at our 2 public forum that is the work that is being done by ASA Architects which is 3 the principal architect firm on this project, along with Dekker, Perich, and 4 Sabatini out of Albuquerque Again, you'll see a map of the proposed site 5 here This is the proposed site and in relationship to what you see and the 6 City limits which are right around this area in here, and then proposed 7 roadways There are better maps that we'll show you in a few minutes 8 that will more clearly detail some of the roadways that we're talking about. 9 Again, this is an aerial of that particular site and you'll notice again 10 this is where the City limits of Las Cruces extend to and then for the most 11 part most this land around this site is actually BLM land and some private 12 ownership also in close proximity, but the majority of it is BLM land This 13 parcel by the way is 160 acre parcel It's a quarter section parcel It is on 14 a lease agreement to New Mexico State through the Bureau of Land 15 Management. We have been working with New Mexico State regarding 16 this parcel and they have sublet 100 acres of those 160 acres to the 17 school district for a 50-year term at a dollar a year and so it's an extremely 18 valuable piece of property in the fact that it provides us with the space that 19 we need very cost effectively And we appreciate the support and the 20 partnership that we've had with New Mexico State in this process Ben 21 Woods is in the audience tonight and has been a partner all along and 22 we've been working closely with them throughout this whole process 23 This is a more current map that we just have added to this 24 presentation This map actually is one that's been provided to us by 25 Bohanna-Houston Again, it specifically talks about the site itself and 26 outlines some specifics I'm going to just point it out to you and we'll come 27 back to it and have Rob Richardson point out some specifics of this map 28 that will in fact be part of the discussion that I'm sure that we're going to be 29 having regarding this issue This is a layout of how the high school and 30 the actual site of the high school will layout on the 160 acres If you'll 31 notice, these boundaries out here, they are all part of the 160 acre 32 boundary, and this is the 100 acres that pretty much, approximately 100 33 acres that takes up the school facilities and all of the parking areas and all 34 of the athletic fields and the physical development fields Right in this 35 particular slide you can see that this is the roadway that we will be talking 36 about this evening which is the development of Sonoma Ranch Boulevard 37 that actually comes up right against that property and right against the 38 development of the high school There are some other maps that will 39 more closely show not only the development of that but how that hooks up 40 with Dripping Springs which is what we'll also be talking about this 41 evening 42 43 Arzabal So part of the development of this school is that particular portion of 44 Sonoma? 45 12 I Torres That's correct. And you do have that is the hardcopy that I gave you as 2 well as the PowerPoint that details the cost that we have at this point for 3 the development of the 2.2 miles of Sonoma Ranch Boulevard from the 4 connection to Dripping Springs all the way to the Lohman connection 5 where it runs now And you have two cost estimates, one cost estimate 6 for that entire piece which is about $9 million and the other cost estimate 7 would be for just this portion which would be the frontage of the school up 8 to Dripping Springs which is approximately $3 6 million 9 10 Arzabal My question is, is that $3 6 included in your budget to build this high 11 school? 12 13 Torres It is not included in the budget for the particular high school, but the district 14 has made a commitment to include it in its cost as part of its budget from 15 other construction costs that we have in order to be able to make that 16 happen We are also pursuing other avenues from the state as well as 17 from the Federal Government and other entities to try to reach that $3 6 18 million But the district has made a commitment that if there are no other 19 entities that step up, that that will be funded through the district's 20 construction projects 21 This is just a quick site analysis that shows you what the site looks 22 like as far as elevations and flows and so I'm not going to spend a lot of 23 time with that, but you can see again that there are some significant 24 differences in elevations from one side of this parcel to the other Again, 25 this is an architectural site slide that talks actually about the vehicular 26 circulation and again you'll notice that when we talk about the vehicular 27 circulation on this particular slide, here again is the Sonoma Ranch 28 Boulevard development that we're talking about, and you'll see that there 29 are three different access points, four different access points into the site 30 off of Sonoma Ranch Boulevard And that's in fact what we're using as we 31 continue to develop the site and the school as the major ingress and 32 egress to this particular site 33 34 Arzabal So that $3 5 million includes connecting with Dripping Springs Road? 35 36 Torres Yes 37 38 Arzabal Okay 39 40 Torres Up to that point. Correct. This is just another slide that shows that in 41 greater detail It's actually a landscaping plan, but again it shows the 42 Sonoma Ranch Boulevard and the ingress and egresses that you see for 43 both staff parking, for public parking or public access, for bus entry and 44 exists, and then for student parking and exits 45 This is again just kind of a perspective that shows you what the 46 actual buildings will look like as they sit on this particular site This is a 13 I southwest view looking out towards the east towards the Organ's This is 2 a view from the northeast, looks down into the valley And again, one of 3 the things that you'll see here is that some of these buildings will be as 4 much as three levels and some will be just simply one level 5 This is the City of Las Cruces MPO map, and of course, you're very 6 familiar with that. And again as we address any questions or concerns 7 that you have regarding this, we've actually again located the site that 8 we're talking about right on this map Again, you'll see here that this is 9 part of the MPO program as far as the development of Sonoma Ranch 10 which is running right through here You also have some other potential 11 roadways that have been also raised as far as being able to allow some 12 flow of traffic into this area or out of this area The Missouri roadway as 13 being one and then again it shows the connection if you will to Dripping 14 Springs here from Sonoma Ranch 15 Again, this is more of utility infrastructure, so I'm not going to spend 16 a lot of time with that because that has to do with utility issues that we 17 have to deal with Again, this is a slide that has been provided to us by 18 Bohanna-Houston and this is probably the one that will have a great deal 19 of further conversation and discussion and detail from Rob Richardson 20 with the Committee as he comes up and talks about those specifics 21 This is a cost estimate of what I mentioned to you You have a 22 hardcopy of this slide, this particular slide as you get it in the PowerPoint 23 it's hard for you to read, so we provided you with a hardcopy And again, 24 you'll notice that we're talking about approximately $3 5 or $3 6 million for 25 that portion that is simply that fronts the school and runs to Dripping 26 Springs and then all together for the entire 2 2 miles it runs all the way to 27 Lohman would be closer to about $8 8 or $9 million 28 The rest of the slides that I have here pretty much have to do with 29 utilities and drainage, which were issues that we did as a part of the 30 presentation, so I'm not going to bore you with those I don't think those 31 are the ones you want to look at. I may quickly look through just one other 32 one that has to do with your MPO transportation Major Thoroughfare Plan 33 that was presented by the City Again, here you see the site, here you 34 see the major thoroughfare plan that the MPO has, here you see Sonoma 35 Ranch, here you see Missouri, and again here you see the Dripping 36 Springs Road site and how they come into play into our particular school 37 site that we're talking about. 38 39 Cadena Very good Trustee Arzabal 40 41 Arzabal Can I just ask one question? As far as the commitment from the district, 42 Dr Torres, I know that you said is it $3 6 or the $9 million that the 43 district has committed? 44 45 Torres The district is making a commitment for that that will be affecting the 46 school site So we certainly want to work with the City and the County and 14 I all entities to try to make sure that it all hopefully gets developed and built 2 out. But our commitment is that we must have that roadway in order for 3 us to be able to address the issues of transportation to the school So that 4 is the commitment that we are pursuing as far as the district is concerned 5 6 Arzabal To follow-up, what is the intersection of Dripping Springs and Sonoma 7 Ranch look like, or what's the design of that? And are there plans for any 8 type of in the interim until that other portion is built; are there any 9 specific plans to how all that traffic is going to be handled on Dripping 10 Springs, or at least the intersection? 11 12 Richardson Rob Richardson with Bohanna and Houston Let me just speak 13 specifically to the intersection As it's conceived right now, it is a full stop 14 intersection at Sonoma Ranch Boulevard Both the east and the west 15 traffic will have a fully developed turning lane to access Sonoma from both 16 the east and west sides of Dripping Springs It is not in this interim time 17 period intended to signalize There are no plans to signalize it at this 18 point. 19 20 Arzabal Okay 21 22 Torres And again, what you see on this particular slide is just further detail of that 23 particular development that needs to be done or that has been done and 24 where this site sits And again, there you see the star is marking our 25 particular site in relationship to Missouri, the development of Missouri, 26 Sonoma Ranch, and the current Dripping Springs Road 27 28 Cadena Committee or staff comments, and I'm assuming your engineers did some 29 type of traffic study or analysis to determine that there doesn't need to be 30 a light there or? 31 32 Torres Councilor Cadena we have not at this point. The traffic study associated 33 with the school site itself hasn't been initiated There is some 34 conversation obviously about tonight with respect to this and the location 35 as to how the configuration needs to be set up in the long-term A lot of 36 that depends on the timing associated with the connection to Sonoma 37 Ranch north going to Lohman, the possible connection or eventual 38 connection I guess I should say at Missouri as well And how the 39 redistricting of the schools, all four high school sites are going to take 40 place, are going to have an impact on how the traffic evaluation would be 41 done So the re-districting plan is a major component that needs to 42 happen in order for us to complete that study 43 44 Cadena. Okay, I'll open it up to comments from the Committee or staff, but I think 45 the concern is I think we all recognize what the big picture and the long- 46 term picture I think it's a good place for a school and when that's all built 15 I out, those roads, the transportation will be effected I think the concern 2 from the people in that area is really the short-term I mean I'm just 3 speaking from what I've heard so far, but you know if there are other 4 comments I think that needs to be addressed The school plans to be 5 open when? 6 7 Torres Mr Chairman, Committee members, one of the other things I wanted to 8 make sure that you understood This school is scheduled right now to 9 open in August 2011 So there is a time period still that we have in order 10 to be able to hopefully get some of the work that's going to be needed in 11 this area to address some of that. Again, one of the other issues that's 12 coming into play today and I cannot address that fully, but one of the 13 issues that is going to come into play with that school opening up in its full 14 2000 student formate which is the intent, that the school would serve 2000 15 students, grades nine through 12 at a cost of approximately $100 million 16 today's dollars at least. That because of the economic issue that the state 17 certainly and that the City and the school district are all facing, of that 18 $100 million the state has made a commitment to partner with the district 19 to the tune of$67 million So the district will actually put up 33 or one-third 20 of the cost. The district already has its one-third set aside and budgeted 21 The issue is whether the state in fact may have to re-address all of the 22 projects that they have throughout the state where they've already made 23 commitments and see if any of those projects can be slowed down so that 24 that full pop of $67 million over the next two years is going to be required 25 So, that's another part of this discussion I don't have any further 26 information on that. We'll probably see some of that happening in the next 27 60 days or so 28 29 Bernal I'm sure this sessions going to be interesting 30 31 Torres That's right, for all of us 32 33 Arzabal Mr Chair, I didn't hear a comment about Dripping Springs Road and any 34 work that would need to be done to Dripping Springs at that intersection 35 Is there any expansion needs, are there you talked about turning lanes 36 and things like that. Just curious on if there's Dripping Springs work that 37 needs to be done as well 38 39 Richardson There isn't anything associated with Dripping Springs beyond the 40 intersection limits which essentially will extend 2,000-feet, one both each 41 and west of the intersection point. So within those connection pieces, yes 42 there will be a full reconstruction essentially of Dripping Springs and 43 basically a 4,000-foot stretch of roadway I don't have the conceptual for 44 the intersection design done We just got started on it right after the first 45 of the year and I'm sorry I don't have a figure to be able to put in front of 46 you to look at. But we'll have that very shortly hopefully 16 1 2 Arzabal And is that included in the Las Cruces Public Schools covering the 3 expenses of that? 4 5 Richardson Yes, that's incorporated in the initial piece 6 7 Arzabal Not on this sheet right here though, right? Thank you 8 9 Cadena Dr Torres, when that school do you plan to start with a freshman class 10 or open it up to everyone? I'm just asking because there might be able to 11 buy some additional time before there are 2,000 students there 12 13 Torres The original intent was to open the school with all four classes starting on 14 the first year Now any time you open a brand new high school you 15 always run into the issue of loyalty to the previous high school by those 16 students that have attended the previous high school for at least three 17 years, even two years And so those are discussions and conversations 18 that the district still has to have to see how we're going to develop that to 19 make sure that we're not yanking kids out and families out of schools in 20 which they feel a loyalty to where they may just have one or two more 21 years to finish So that discussion has yet to be done The other piece 22 that I want to make sure you understand that was mentioned earlier and 23 that is that the district will be going to a complete redistricting of all school 24 attendance zones that will be implemented prior to the time that this 25 school opens up as well as a new middle school and a new elementary 26 school that we have on the books that are scheduled to open in 2010 27 And we are currently working with the consulting firm out of Albuquerque 28 that is doing the master planning for the district and is working with us on 29 redistricting plans as well One of the things that we don't want people to 30 assume is that because they necessarily live in extreme close proximity to 31 this that obviously they won't necessarily be attending that school, but 32 there are other issues that we need to look at as we look particularly at the 33 outer perimeters of the redistricting schematic that we'll be looking at. And 34 so we'll have a great deal of discussion and public input when we get to 35 the redistricting conversations which hopefully will be occurring possibly 36 later this school year or early in the fall of next year 37 38 Arzabal Mr Mayor, just one question, let me get this right. So all four high schools 39 will be redistricted, not just the entire district will be 40 41 Torres That's correct, the entire district, which also will include middle schools 42 Because one of the things that we're looking at which we had not 43 previously really done is create any kind of a feeder system and we feel 44 that this is the opportunity that we may want to look at that. 45 46 Arzabal Thank you 17 1 2 Perez. Mr Chairman I would like to add the benefit of attending a public meeting 3 on Monday night, so I've kind of heard this once and had a couple of days 4 to think about it. I have two questions or one of them I guess is just a flat 5 request. When we're looking at road access into this school and we 6 discussed this extensively through public comment on Monday night, I'm 7 pretty sure it's intuitively obvious to everyone that that is not adequate 8 access to that school The one spot on Dripping Springs Dripping 9 Springs itself has multiple issues The difficulty that we have is trying to 10 look at the proper road allocation if we don't know what the school districts 11 are going to be Because a traffic impact analysis in that traffic distribution 12 can't be assessed and we can't make a decision as the MPO unless we 13 know where the traffic is coming from If your district for example is 14 primarily from Telshor South extending maybe even down into the Brizito 15 area, then no one's going to drive to the Lohman extension to drive down 16 Sonoma Ranch Boulevard They're just not going to They're going to all 17 funnel down Dripping Springs So you'll see say an 80/20 distribution If 18 we look at Missouri which I think was suggested a couple of times, we 19 may never see a 50/50 split. Obviously, Dripping Springs may always be 20 the preferred route But we may see a more even distribution if the school 21 is districted in that manner It makes it absolutely its makes it very, 22 very difficult. I wouldn't say absolutely impossible because we can guess 23 all over the place But it is very, very difficult for this body to look at that 24 allocation of traffic without your districting plan in place So, I guess a 25 question is when are you going to have that done? I understand the 26 political implications of releasing the districting plan and making these 27 decisions, but the school district needs to understand from a traffic and a 28 planning standpoint it needs to happen yesterday in order to make good 29 decisions and get that access to the school 30 The question I have also for the MPO, when we look at this and 31 looking at Missouri, when Bohanna-Houston was kind enough to kind of 32 overlay the MPO mapping with our mapping, and I'm trying to think. This 33 isn't a very good picture Where is the picture that you had shown me Rob 34 that shows the alignment along the section lines of the road? And 1 35 wanted to ask because I only have two years on this board, what the 36 method to the madness was with the Missouri alignment that did not follow 37 the utility easements? It dumps up a section line 38 39 Richardson Let me back up to this one and then I'll relate it to the question What 40 Commissioner Perez is referring to is if you look at the MPO map and the 41 extension of Missouri and the definition and approximate alignment of 42 what we would like ultimately the East Mesa to look like Everything once 43 you pass Sonoma Ranch essentially is set up on a grid And the grid is 44 effectively a mile square So what that does is that tells you that Missouri 45 as it comes out of its existing location at City limits needs to head 46 northeast to a point where it catches the north line of Section 14 which is 18 I where the school site's located In these dotted lines that doesn't mean 2 much, but if you go to the actual physical location on the ground which you 3 can see in this map, this is Missouri at its current location at the east edge 4 of the City limits This is the section corner, northeast section corner of 5 Section 14 which is essentially where the MPO gridline would start in 6 these mile increments And it essentially establishes Missouri 7 approximately a mile to the south of Lohman which is essentially right 8 here, and a mile to the north of Dripping Springs So that's how the MPO 9 map lies out physically on the ground, and as it relates to the new high 10 school it's essentially a half-mile to the north 11 12 Perez. The method I think the only way I can do this is to point and I'm not 13 sure how to do that from here and if I have a laser thingy I'm going to put 14 somebody's eye out. Let's see if I can talk us through this When the 15 suggestion was made on Monday, and it did catch my fancy because 16 Missouri is a wider road, it has our bike lanes on it, we have the ability to 17 access the school site, and obviously there are other reasons why you 18 know Sonoma Ranch Boulevard may be the main access and Lohman 19 again and Dripping Springs maybe the first two points again depending on 20 your districting and your traffic allocation If we were to look at Missouri 1 21 guess the question I have for MPO staff is, are we married to that 22 alignment, or would we be able to shift it to the north boundary of the 23 school site and there's a reason I'm asking this, but when we do the MPO 24 maps I'm not sure how married we are to those alignments or to be honest 25 with you where they come from other than kind of some general planning 26 27 Murphy- Mr Chairman, Commissioner Perez. We're not really married to it at all 28 It's a general rule planning document that you know gives general 29 guidance Section lines are kind of preliminarily chosen in order that the 30 burden of road construction falls across different property owners so that 31 not one property owner is saddled with constructing all of the road We've 32 gotten changes to the equations when you're talking about you know 33 several different public bodies because all the money is public funding at 34 that point and we all share in the cost at that. So you know we set the 35 general alignment for the roadways And then there's a lot of shifting or 36 else the entire built up City would be a complete perfect grid at this point, 37 and it's not. Those alignments do change We can change you know 38 this body can change the alignments through the amendment process of 39 the transportation plan We can also change it with the update of the Long 40 Range Transportation Plan which we are currently working on I think the 41 key you also touched on the key factor is the districting and how that 42 lays out and what that's ultimately going to drive how the mass majority of 43 traffic, you know which direction it'll go, and I think it would be a really 44 good idea if you know if members of the Policy Committee themselves, 45 but MPO staff be involved in some of those districting discussions so that 46 we can keep the transportation system in mind and you know either 19 I influence the districting to make sense from the existing transportation 2 plan or if necessary be able to quickly adopt the transportation system to 3 what the best districting plan is I guess I wanted to bring up one more 4 semi-constraint for Missouri right now, the existing Missouri as it goes east 5 of Telshor, although the Thoroughfare Plan calls it out as a minor arterial, 6 it is built out with mostly residences abutting it and it's quite likely, you 7 know it's never going to be any wider than it is now and you know that's 8 something that you know we hadn't anticipated a high school site on that 9 location when we did the last transportation plan update in 2005 And it's 10 certainly new information that we'll need to adjust to and you know 11 perhaps we need to relook at the classification of Missouri, but I think you 12 know just on a general note I think as long as there are many different 13 access points, the size of them doesn't matter as much 14 15 Perez. Mr Chairman, if I can have two clarifications So Dripping Springs 16 according to our plan is a major arterial? 17 18 Murphy- Yes 19 20 Perez: It's a two lane road with no possibility of expansion because of limitations 21 on right-of-way and it's a major arterial? 22 23 Murphy- Mr Chair 24 25 Perez. I'm dust missing the designation I thought it had to have ability to expand 26 27 Murphy- On Dripping Springs, there is the ability to expand A lot of the subdivision 28 activity that's taking place along that has happened after that designation 29 You know particularly the latest example that I can, or the most recent 30 example I can think of, Organ Maze, Mesa Ranch, we have 120-feet of 31 right-of-way there even though it's just two lanes on the ground right now, 32 so there is existing right-of-way to widen the road? Where the funds come 33 from for widening it is going to be another question, but the right-of-way 34 does exist in many of the locations I never remember the name of the 35 subdivision, but the Tiger Woods and all the golf names, you know there's 36 dedication of right-of-way for that one as well So you know the width is 37 there in that instance It's a different nature from Missouri 38 39 Perez. I'll show you something I found later The last point too is when we're 40 looking at Missouri going east there is an existing, because we're crossing 41 BLM land, and that's always how long will it take to easements and how 42 will we do this? The water line and I believe the electric lines are on an 43 existing utility easement going due east along that section line So this is 44 an existing easement across BLM property that may be able to be 45 facilitated into a road easement because we already have existing 46 easement across for utilities And I know utility and road easements are 20 I not necessarily the same thing But in the eye of BLM where you've 2 already torn up all the environmental stuff, it certainly puts us in a better 3 position, for what that's worth That's what I've been doing since Monday 4 Thank you Mr Chairman 5 6 Cadena. Thank you 7 8 S Thomas Mr Chair 9 10 Cadena Yes, Councilor Thomas, and then Councilor Archuleta 11 12 S Thomas Thank you I want say that I have been involved in some of these 13 meetings and I'm grateful to Ben Woods for inviting me sort of early on to 14 be part of some of these meetings I want to say that this is a very 15 important issue to both Commissioner Perez and to me because it affects 16 our districts and so you know we appreciate the fact that we've been able 17 to be part of some of these conversations On the other hand, I agree 18 very strongly with Mayor Cadena that this is a really late date for the MPO 19 to be involved in this discussion I think that any future school planning is 20 always going to affect transportation and I think MPO should be at the 21 table from the very beginning I'd like to give a couple of examples looking 22 forward, Caeri and Andy and I were at the New Mexico American Planning 23 Association We attended a session on school siting and we heard a very 24 good presentation by Jessica Frost who's a New Mexico Department of 25 Transportation Safe Routes to School director and she, later in 26 conversations with her, she pointed out to me how some of this planning is 27 done in other areas and one thing she pointed out to me was the Oregon 28 School siting handbook which she had used pretty extensively in her 29 presentation and I found out that there are four sections to that. There are 30 four guiding principles and one of them is the school site is easily and 31 safely accessible by walking, biking, and transit. So that obviously their 32 transportation people are involved very early on and it is state legislation 33 1 also had a conversation with Steve Newbee recently who said that 34 in Washington state the cities and counties and various municipalities 35 really got tired of schools just popping up and MPO's as well I suppose, 36 and suddenly they have to change their whole transportation plan They 37 have to change their whole utility plan, so in Washington State that no 38 longer is allowed All school selection has to be done in coordination with 39 planning, with the local entities, so I want to suggest that for future 40 planning that this Body, that we really think seriously about working with 41 our state representatives and senators in really talking about what goes on 42 at the state level here We did also at the meeting we were at a 43 gentleman who is from the New Mexico Public Schools Facility Authority 44 was also at that meeting I've spent some time on the phone with him 45 talking about the requirements that our state has for school planning, 46 they're very minimal in terms of really siting or taking into consideration 21 I transportation There is some he gave some indication that our 2 particular approach is being reviewed and it may you know change in the 3 future, but I think that this body needs to step up and be supportive of any 4 kind of changes that are coming and work closely with our representatives 5 so that in the future we don't have these issues crop up for us That's my 6 stump speech on what we can learn from this and how we might think 7 about proceeding in the future 8 Now, getting back to just this particular problem, at the public 9 meeting that Karen and I were at on Monday night there was huge support 10 for Missouri as an access point and I would say probably the general 11 conclusion was there was enormous support for there being as many 12 access points as possible And as we all know from this body that's how 13 you handle traffic You look at having dispersing it. You look at having 14 more than one access point. We want to avoid funneling too much traffic 15 into one roadway in virtually any situation we're talking about. So in 16 further conversations I understand, have talked to Mr Torres about getting 17 some of these roads on the TIP and I know that's been under discussion 18 I've had some other discussions with other people in the City about if 19 we're really serious about looking at more than one access point and 20 making sure we have as many as possible, that we have a discussion 21 here about whether or not we want to see Dripping Springs, Missouri, and 22 Sonoma Ranch all on the TIP and whether or not that's possible 23 24 Cadena Thank you and point well taken Councilor Archuleta 25 26 Archuleta Thank you Mr Chairman The question is for Dr Torres Refresh my 27 memory on when the City was going to annex that 150 acres or has that 28 since changed? 29 30 Torres That conversation has been an ongoing conversation from the beginning 31 of the site selection process And once the site selection was actually 32 made for this particular site, Councilor Archuleta, we have prior to and 33 during that process, we visited with New Mexico State, City staff as well, 34 to talk about what in fact would be required Let me refresh your memory 35 of something that I said earlier and that is that the actual site that will hold 36 this high school is a BLM holding under New Mexico State New Mexico 37 State partnered with us and offered that as a potential so that we could 38 possibly consider the site from a whole lot of different perspectives In 39 conversations with the City and with New Mexico State and certainly Ben 40 is here tonight, Ben Woods is here tonight, and if he'd like to add to that 1 41 would invite him to do so But in conversations with New Mexico State 42 and with the City, it is the direction from the City staff that New Mexico 43 State would have to make the application since they in fact hold actually 44 the lease with BLM for that annexation We've been talking about a whole 45 lot of different approaches to the annexation, everything from just the site 46 and the roadway to it which is not necessarily desirable nor what most 22 I people would look at, nor what even New Mexico State or what we would 2 look at, to possibly incorporating a whole lot of some BLM as well as 3 some privately owned land that would be adjacent to this particular site 4 and to that roadway New Mexico State has done a great deal of leg work 5 in that area with the private owners and with BLM as has the school 6 district and so I'm going to ask the Committee's indulgence and have Ben 7 address that specifically since you've raised that question of annexation 8 9 Archuleta Thank you 10 11 Cadena Mr Woods 12 13 Woods Mr Chairman, good evening There's nothing I wanted to do more than to 14 come here and talk to this group about annexation tonight. I'm glad to be 15 here though With all respect to my good friend Dr Torres, I just wanted 16 to make one slight correction The land that is being leased is held in 17 patent by the University We acquired it from the Bureau of Land 18 Management. It's a subtly, but it's not a lease hold from the Bureau of 19 Land Management. We actually hold patent to it. Similar to the patent 20 that we hold underneath the Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum, which we 21 then lease to the office of Cultural Affairs so that they could build the New 22 Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum So it's a similar type of land 23 proposal that is included 24 Perhaps we could talk a little more about the lands that surround 25 this site and as you look at this I would just point out that north is to the 26 left. So, to the top of the map would be to the east. Is there pointer? So, 27 this is A-Mountain as we look to the upper right hand portion of the 28 mountain New Mexico State University's land holdings come along this 29 line to about this point, and then drop to this point down to here These 30 are two mining claims The top claim is BLM surface and mineral state 31 held by the Eddy Perez Estate To the south of that is a 40-acre estate 32 that's held now actually they've acquired the surface and mineral state 33 Those are co-mingled by Bobby Mayfield and Norm Riddle Then 34 immediately to the east of that is the site for the Farm and Ranch Heritage 35 Museum, this is a quarter section that is the site for the proposed school 36 And then to the west and around it is BLM lands with the exception of this 37 quarter section which is held, title is held by Eddie Binns This BLM land 38 was previously a part of what they refer to as the NASA Withdrawal And 39 the NASA Withdrawal was set aside of Federal lands to protect research 40 that was being accomplished up here on top of A-Mountain by the 41 University That withdrawal has now been lifted and that land is now back 42 within the control of the local BLM district. They are in the process of 43 evaluating the future disposition of that land as a part of their land 44 disposition plan It's not released yet. They've not but we know that 45 they're talking about that. 23 I One of the things that we've been talking about as a part of this 2 overall effort was how to bring the various land owners together as a part 3 of a coordinated planning effort so that we could get in front of the 4 annexation Because it's very clear to all of us in the community that we 5 need to talk before annexation's get into a very rigid formal structural 6 process in the City And what New Mexico State University as the 7 underlying land owner said is we'll take the lead and try and coordinate 8 those discussions So we brought together the Bureau of Land 9 Management. We brought together Mr Eddie Binns We brought 10 together the mining claimants We brought together the Farm and Ranch 11 Heritage Museum, the City, Elephant Butte Irrigation District which has 12 this lower right hand side of land There is another church being proposed 13 on lands right in here that have been disposed of by EBID We brought 14 that church into the discussion We basically tried to say, this is what's 15 going on here with the schools, how do we work together to create a 16 unified regional plan? How do we deal as a region with issues of flood 17 control, with issues of utilities, whatever it might be? And how do we do 18 any future development in this area so that it's part of a coordinated plan 19 Certainly Councilor Thomas has been a champion in asking us to get in 20 front of that and has suggested some avenues, one of which is the 21 engagement of a firm called the Sonora Institute I believe 22 23 S Thomas The Sonora Institute, yes 24 25 Woods And that's one that was a possibility to explore how they can help bring 26 these diverse groups together as a part of a plan The question of 27 annexation is a policy question between County and City and I don't 28 propose to know what the best answer is for our community Simply to 29 say that we hope that New Mexico State University facilitate discussions 30 and to facilitate good dialogue about how we do this in a such a way that it 31 makes sense for our community and that we think about what we need to 32 do upstream, downstream and with utilities that just make good public 33 policy We have no dog in the fight so to speak at New Mexico State 34 University We don't have an intended outcome that we are championing, 35 only to bring the outcome forward that makes the best possible sense for 36 our community with regards to the annexation And we will react to the 37 guidance that we receive from Commission and Council to that end 38 39 Archuleta Wow, I'm glad I asked the question Thank you 40 41 Cadena Thank you very much for enlightening us Are there any other comments 42 or questions for Mr Woods? 43 44 Archuleta Mr Chairman I have another question, I'm not I have another question 45 but I'd like to start the questioning with a comment first. As some of you 46 know I'm retired from White Sands And I'm still an active member of the 24 I WSMR Museum Foundation and as we all know the Las Cruces Gate is 2 going to be moved farther north which is going to affect our museum So 3 we talked about maybe building a separate road from Highway 70 to the 4 museum and we talked about the second engineer battalion maybe 5 helping us out with that. Now has any consideration been given because 6 the school and you can correct me if I'm wrong, the school has been built 7 in that location and because of the expansion at White Sands? Has any 8 consideration been given to asking WSMR if the second engineering 9 battalion could work on this access road to the school, some portions of it 10 at least to reduce the $8 million? 11 12 Torres Councilor Archuleta, the easy answer to that is no The suggestion that 13 you make about that potential is certainly something that we can always 14 pursue The school district, because of the build out, and let me add to 15 your comment, because of the build out of White Sands Missile Range 16 and the fact that we are now already experiencing beginning of that build 17 out with a combat battalion I believe that is already here and is coming 18 now, but also they have an engineering brigade that's coming between 19 now and 2013 We have been for at least approximately six to eight 20 months now been working on a regular basis and meeting on a quarterly 21 basis with the general and the commanding garrison commander Colonel 22 Gible and his staff and the staff at White Sands to talk about how that 23 build out is going to impact Las Cruces Public Schools, both on base and 24 off base Right now as a part of that conversation we are looking already 25 to acquire land that they will provide to use for additional buildings of an 26 elementary school possibly, a second elementary school, and a middle 27 school there They would also like to see a small high school We're not 28 sure that the small high school is something that will be necessary on 29 base It all depends on how that build out continues So what we're 30 looking for at this particular time is that Onate High School which currently 31 feeds the base from the high school student population will continue to be 32 the high school very likely that will continue to be closest to the base 33 That will continue to serve the high school population from the base 34 Whether they would have an interest in any of this if it doesn't specifically 35 feed the population that is coming from the base, I don't know, but it's 36 certainly a conversation we can have 37 38 Archuleta Thank you 39 40 Cadena Let me interrupt this very important discussion because we have several 41 items on the agenda and see if we can't summarize this so we can move 42 on I think we all recognize that Sonoma and Missouri are the long-term 43 that we need to do long-term to resolve these traffic issues, but the 44 concern I guess we all know what the budget is both nationally and at the 45 state, so all of us are on various committees and we can all champion that 46 throughway for Sonoma In the interim we just really I think the real 25 I concern is still the interim resolution, so I guess when subdivisions or 2 anybody else comes forward we have the total packet with traffic counts, 3 what it is going to do at the light, what is the New Mexico Department of 4 Transportation's opinion Is there going to be a bottleneck at Dripping 5 Springs, and I don't have that in front of me Maybe it exists and we just 6 don't have it. So if it does then we need to get that forwarded I think our 7 staff and several Committee members have requested that we be part of 8 not only the future process for sidewalks, biking, but the streets 9 themselves So I'd like to request that we be part of this particular project 10 as it moves forward, meaning with Staff members and all of you don't have 11 to attend every one of our meetings, but if there is someone that can 12 represent us or if we can have our Staff at your meetings so that they can 13 keep us informed of how this progresses I think one of the Committee 14 members asked for a tentative timeline for the districting, the redistricting, 15 and I think that's very important and I guess I'd like to ask for your 16 commitment to give us at some point some type of a timeline for that. And 17 again, we all understand the need for the school and the big picture and 18 how it's going to evolve in eight, nine, ten years, but we still need you to 19 address for those because the Councilor and Commissioners, that whole 20 neighborhood is going to come to you when these issues start coming and 21 we need to have those answers, some more specific answers as to what's 22 going to happen there 23 24 Torres Mr Chairman, members of the Committee, I do appreciate your guidance 25 and your comments I appreciate the suggestions that have been made 26 by all of you Certainly Councilwoman Thomas and some of her concerns 27 about the fact that we need to have more involvement as we not only look 28 at this particular school, but other schools Unfortunately what previous 29 planning had been done in conjunction with you and with the City and with 30 the County prior to superintendant Rounds coming on board and myself, 1 31 can't speak for, but it is our intent, it is certainly his intent and the school 32 district's intent and I speak as well for the board, to continue to develop 33 stronger relationships, liaisons, partnerships, between City, County, and 34 any other agency that may be involved as we continue to look at further 35 development of schools Certainly New Mexico State will be certainly one 36 of those partners as they have been already and I want to thank Ben for 37 his attendance tonight and addressing some of the specific questions that 38 New Mexico State's been involved We are not, and the superintendant 39 has made this very clear to a number of you in meetings that we've had, 40 we're not in the business of building roads That's not what we do And 41 we don't want to be in that business We are in the business of providing 42 schools and educational programs and that includes construction of those 43 schools and the selection of where to put those schools We want to do 44 that and we want to be a partner with the City and the County and all other 45 agencies in doing that. We want to be good neighbors to the 46 neighborhoods where we end up locating those, and obviously the better 26 I job we do in that also will help us to create environments and places and 2 locations where students can walk or bike to school and reduce the 3 amount of transportation that we have to perhaps contract out as well, 4 because we don't have as many buses Unfortunately, sometimes 5 because of cost or other restrictions as far as land sites or land availability, 6 or populations, it's difficult to do that. But what I'm hearing certainly from 7 you folks and what certainly we can give you as a commitment from the 8 district is we will continue to work with you and perhaps more closely than 9 in the past to make sure that when we do make a site selection it is with 10 as many of these factors in consideration as possible so that hopefully we 11 can reduce the impact that it may have, whether it be transportation, land 12 costs, or any of the other issues that have been discussed 13 14 Cadena Very good, and we appreciate that commitment. I guess I just want on 15 those three specific things, the redistricting, when and if you have a 16 particular timeline if that can be communicated to us and I think there 17 needs to be an effort before we design some of these things, we need to 18 know I mean Commissioner Perez has a good point. Secondly, as 19 these numbers develop if we can get those to staff and then on this 20 particular high school if we can have some type of our Staff involvement. 21 22 Torres We certainly will extend that invitation I think as far as the redistricting, 23 that'll be a decision that the Board of Education will make and I will not, 1 24 cannot certainly speak for them, but it is something that obviously we will 25 share with them as far as your concerns and the need for that decision to 26 be made as soon as possible I certainly will share your comments with 27 superintendant. What I do know that we do need for you is some 28 guidance and some direction from you this evening We are in the 29 process of putting together an application for the TIP which includes at this 30 particular time what we had originally looked to design and that is that 31 portion of development of Sonoma Ranch Boulevard and did not include 32 Missouri, and so what Mr Richardson is asking is that as we go through 33 that development, we would need some guidance from you folks as to 34 how you're going to look at this so that we can either include or not include 35 because it's going to change that application process based upon what 36 we're doing at this time 37 38 Cadena Well I think I'm hearing a consensus that we need to include Missouri As 39 far as the specifics, staff would be able to give you that. But if I'm wrong, 40 speak up 41 42 S Thomas Yes, I think that's what we heard loud and clear at the public meeting as 43 well on Monday night, is very strong support for Missouri and if Dripping 44 Springs is included on the TIP does that mean that if something became 45 available somewhere along the line that helps us with that as well, so that 27 I was the last discussion I had, was can all three be included in, if so why or 2 why not. 3 4 Richardson Based on that direction we'll get with MPO staff and work out whether they 5 should be separate applications or one collectively or something like that 6 so we can handle that. Basically, what I need to know is whether or not 7 1 want to introduce Jared Lee and Andrew Guerra who are very competent 8 engineers on the part of our Staff, but they need to know whether they 9 have to work this weekend or not. We'll get with Andy and see how to put 10 that together Thank you 11 12 Cadena Definitely going to have them working this weekend 13 14 Perez. And again Mr Chairman, just a point of clarification on that, and I hate to 15 harp on this point, but the school board needs to understand that the 16 decision if we are to receive funding or if we receive funding in phased 17 amounts we have essentially three pieces or multiple pieces of road that 18 might be built. Really the question is if you are going to do the district in 19 such a way that it's primarily south, the southern portion of the district that 20 will be in here, it really would preclude a need for the upper portion, 21 potentially of Sonoma Ranch Boulevard I know that there are other 22 reasons to put Sonoma Ranch Boulevard all the way through from where 23 it currently is or will be in a couple of weeks down to Dripping Springs and 24 then any further south, and I'm not ignoring that and I am aware of that. 25 But when we look at prioritizing and only getting phases of roads, the 26 school board needs to understand if we're going to pick two access points, 27 we need to know that we're picking the right access points so the traffic 28 will be allocated appropriately And again I acknowledge that the 29 districting portion of this is politically sensitive and I know it has its own 30 process, but my fear in this is like the prior part of the planning process 31 and I'll be blunt, that this is just going to kind of drag itself into 2011 and 32 say, oh we'll do it better the next time And I can't say strongly enough 33 tonight, that's not acceptable We need to start as of today and start 34 getting answers to this, figure out the traffic, get it incorporated with the 35 MPO, and that really needs to happen in the next few months so that the 36 engineers can design it, allocate the budget appropriately as it comes in, 37 and that we continue to plan the access to the school so that you're in a 38 good place Leaving this in this kind of nebulous way and walking away 39 with this tonight is really kind of hard for me to swallow, so I'd like some 40 commitment to come back in the next month or two with some answers to 41 the issues that were brought up tonight from the MPO and if an 42 appropriate position would be to send members of the MPO to a school 43 board meeting so that we can communicate that because we hate to 44 always shoot the messenger, that can be us instead, and staff obviously 45 being much smarter on these things than I am Then maybe that's the 46 tactic that we need to take too, but I'd like to see a resolution within the 28 I next couple of MPO meetings if I can ask you for that. Thank you Mr 2 Chairman 3 4 Cadena. I guess I just want to follow-up, we want to commend you and thank you 5 profusely for being at this meeting and starting this process You know as 6 chair of the Committee, if it'll help I'll be glad to meet with the 7 superintendent or if I need to go with staff to a school board meeting But 8 we just want to really we just want to improve the communication and 9 we're not going to look at the past. This Committee doesn't do that. 10 We're just going to move forward positively and get some resolutions The 11 better the transportation is there it's going to be better for the school 12 board, ultimately the students there, and everyone So that's all we're 13 really interested in 14 15 Torres Mr Chair, members of the Committee, I have been speaking with your 16 staff and we are in the process of establishing some work sessions 17 together with your staff along with our Staff and our board members so 18 that the board understands truly how the MPO plan works into any future 19 development of schools 20 21 Cadena That's great. Appreciate it. 22 23 S Thomas Just one last and I'm happy to meet as well and I'm sure Commissioner 24 Perez, but since we're the most out districts are impacted most and 1 25 just have one last request, I need a copy of this PowerPoint to send to the 26 Sonoran Institute They'd like to see kind of where we're at. 27 28 Torres We can certainly forward that to you 29 30 Cadena Most definitely 31 32 Torres Actually, your staff has it on their server here so that they can provide it to 33 you 34 35 Cadena I think we're ready to move on 36 37 Torres Thank you 38 39 Cadena One of my agenda items is public comment, unless there is someone out 40 there that has a burning interest to speak on this right now, if you can wait 41 a few minutes Come on up 42 43 Bills My name is Allison Bills and I live on the north side of A-Mountain and 1 44 was real sad to hear the fact that this school site selection committee had 45 not really involved you since 2007, if I understand what you all are saying 46 regarding transportation to this school You know clearly we would need 29 I public transportation to this new school I think the site is probably a good 2 one for this town as it grows, you know bike lanes, bus transportation, 3 walking transportation, or access to the school is important, but when 1 4 see the site, I'm a little concerned Are they going to build a bridge? 1 5 have some concerns that I feel I need to share here Are they going to 6 build a bridge over that gigantic water arroyo that happens every spring 7 during monsoon, the water it's a real choke point there alongside of 8 Dripping Springs? Is that, you know, I mean obviously they don't travel 9 Dripping Springs real often to see what happens There is a new church 10 just going to go up there Right at one curve opposite it is going to be a 11 police station The other choke point where they're coming with this 12 Sonoma Ranch Boulevard lust at the curve 13 14 Cadena I see Tom going out there and bringing them back in I don't think we can 15 answer your questions, they can answer 16 17 Bills Whatever They should have done their homework. I'm just sort of as a 18 resident of this committee at this point in my life, they are coming out with 19 the Sonoma Ranch Boulevard at a huge choke point on Dripping Springs 20 that goes right around the mountain There's no room for expansion 21 unless you're going to build a cantilevered extra highway over that gigantic 22 arroyo So, I have some concerns about this and, yeah, it'd be nice also 23 to hear about if we have a huge contingent of military engineers that are 24 coming into our area, couldn't we employ them, to help us do this road 25 Anyway, this is just ideas that as I listen to what these people are saying 26 This is all new Politics are all new to me, but my concern is that they're 27 not thinking about arroyos, they're not thinking about monsoon season, 28 they're talking about extending Dripping Springs Road at strange choke 29 points here that are obvious and have been there for a long time So 30 anyway, I just wanted to share that. And as I said, I'm really sad to hear 31 that since 2007 the transportation group of the City of Las Cruces has not 32 been actively part of this decision making Thank you 33 34 Arzabal Mr Mayor, I can make a suggestion real quick. I know they had a on 35 Monday was the public meeting at the Farm and Ranch, is there another 36 meeting planned for some of these questions to be answered that this 37 young lady stated, that it is planned and everything Mr Torres? 38 39 Torres Yes, Commissioner on some of the the public meeting that was held on 40 Monday night at the Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum was the first of at 41 least two or three that we're planning to have so that there is plenty of 42 opportunity These are initial meetings Again, as we get closer and have 43 other issues to resolve as it applies to this particular site and other sites, 44 we'll have other public forums But we will be announcing a second public 45 forum for this particular site in the next several weeks 46 30 I Arzabal Thank you 2 3 Cadena. As far as the MPO Committee and staff, I think you've heard a 4 commitment tonight is that we're going to get involved and we're 5 committed to working with Las Cruces Public Schools and the 6 neighborhood to move this project forward as informative as we can, and 7 have the engineers there to answer those types of questions I'm sure 8 they're working on them as we speak. Anyone else in the public? 9 10 Pearson George Pearson I have some questions about the road designs for 11 Sonoma Ranch and the intersection at Dripping Springs, if there's going to 12 be consideration for in road bicycle facilities And especially at the 13 intersection where accidents happen with the different modes of 14 transportation so that were they in fact designing the safest facility that we 15 can for vehicles, bicycles, and pedestrians 16 17 Cadena Who can answer that? Are we that far along in the planning? 18 19 Murphy- Mr Chairman, MPO policy right now currently stipulates that in road 20 bicycle facilities are constructed on new and reconstructed MPO 21 thoroughfares 22 23 Cadena. As well as sidewalks, I'm sure 24 25 Murphy- Yes 26 27 Cadena Any other questions, comments? Thanks again for all of your interest in 28 this topic. 29 30 8.2 Committee Training Cluster Subdivisions 31 REMOVED FROM THE AGENDA DUE TO ILLNESS OF THE SPEAKER. 32 33 8.3 Location Study Update 34 35 Cadena We're going to go ahead and move on to 8 3, and that's the Location 36 Study update Tom 37 38 Murphy- Mr Chairman, I'm going to turn this over to Chandler Duncan of Wilbur, 39 Smith, and Associates who is running the Location Study for the 40 Department of Transportation And also I'll just point out NMDOT staff that 41 Ray Matthew who is the project lead and then Frank Guzman the new 42 District 1 engineer is also in the audience 43 44 Duncan Thank you Tom, and thanks to the Committee for inviting me to be here 45 tonight. Again, I'm Chandler Duncan from Wilbur Smith Associates, 46 project manager for the consulting team on the Location and Structure 31 I Study for the Las Cruces MPO Before we get too far into this, I did want 2 to just sort of give some background for people who might not have been 3 at all of the previous meetings This is a process that began last fall when 4 New Mexico DOT and the MPO basically got together and started looking 5 at various issues that have been coming up about how the MPO is 6 structured, kind of where the effort of the MPO is going, and how the MPO 7 can best meet both its Federal mandates as well as the needs and 8 expectations of its members and customers So it was named Location 9 and Structure Study, but the intention was not to completely limit the 10 scope of this study, but rather to look at you know any issues that enable 11 the MPO to better operate So what we have done is we were here early 12 last fall where we had an initial assessment and several issues were 13 raised, and that's how the issues that are addressed in this study came 14 about. That was followed up by workshop that many people here had the 15 opportunity to attend and a number of other people attended where ideas 16 were generated about how the issues can be addressed and then I was 17 here in November where we kind of went over what some of the ideas 18 were that came out of the workshop And then the period since then 19 we've been working with MPO and DOT staff to try to decide which ideas 20 we would move forward to with recommendations based on the technical, 21 financial, and other feasibility issues of what might be doable for the MPO 22 So tonight what's being presented are the draft recommendations 23 and we're still going to be taking comment until this time next week. We 24 did receive comment from one Policy Board member which is greatly 25 appreciated We are still going to be taking comment for the next week. 26 So we hope this will kind of generate some discussion and some thought 27 about if we're on the right track, if there's anything that we missed or any 28 other things that are of particular importance to board members we would 29 like to generate any discussion that needs to occur 30 So today's presentation, we'll just kind of recap what the issues are 31 again that we've been looking at throughout the study Describe and 32 explain the current draft recommendations on each issue and take any 33 questions or comment issue by issue so that we can get a final report to 34 you before your next meeting So just to kind of go over the issues again, 35 one of the issues was the independent operation of the MPO with respect 36 to the City of Las Cruces to make sure that it is understood as a truly 37 regional entity that involves all the different members and not only the City 38 itself, the size and composition of the MPO staff; the utilization of 39 transportation and GIS models and the technical resources of the MPO, 40 Communication among the different committees and the possibility of 41 using citizen advisory committees, the relationship of the Federal Highway 42 Administration, the integration of New Mexico DOT with the MPO process, 43 both the long range planning and programming The funding of the MPO, 44 and how the MPO might be able to access more sources of funding 45 Improvements to the long range transportation plan to make it as 46 meaningful as it can possibly be Improving the TIP process so that it's as 32 I well understood and as meaningful as it can possibly be Also, 2 opportunities for enhanced collaboration with the EI Paso MPO and 3 training opportunities for MPO staff and Board members Again, I'm not 4 going to go into a lot of detail just because we've talked about them last 5 time But those were the issues that again came out of the initial 6 assessment. We've been talking about them all along 7 So I'm just going to lump right into some of the recommendations 8 that we're looking at making as we wind this study off Regarding the 9 independent operation of the MPO, and again the word independent we 10 want to make sure we really should probably say more like interdependent 11 and that the MPO obviously works collaborative with all of the entities in 12 the region One of the recommendations is to continue to locate the MPO 13 staff within the City facilities That seemed like something that there was a 14 lot of consensus about within the workshops and among the people that 15 we talked to However, there is a recommendation that we were 16 considering recommending renegotiating the joint powers agreement or 17 memorandum of understanding that explicitly addresses some of the 18 issues that came up in the workshop, probably to do that using a third 19 party facilitator Some of the specific, the parties that we would 20 recommend to be part of that negotiation would mainly be senior staff from 21 the different entities that belong to the MPO, such as Las Cruces City 22 Manager, the Mesilla Town Clerk, the Dona Ana County Manager, and the 23 New Mexico DOT District Engineer The issues that we are considering 24 recommending to be addressed in a revised MOU or MOA would be 25 looking at the name of the MPO, should it have more of a regional name, 26 the role of the MPO board and the selection and the appraisal of the MPO 27 officer It seemed like there was a desire for there to be more of a role, 28 but not too much of a role and exactly what that role is Also the role of 29 the MPO with the City and issues of development review as to better 30 delineating where the MPO role begins and the City role ends with respect 31 to how MPO staff are involved in that process So are there any questions 32 about issue one? Those were the only things when we talked about that 33 issue of independent or interdependent operation of the MPO that we 34 came up with But if there are any questions, I want to just take any 35 questions or discussion issue by issue so that we don't get to the end and 36 things get passed by 37 38 Cadena Questions or comments so far? 39 40 S Thomas Thank you Mr Mayor I think that one thing that came up in the lunch time 41 discussion we had was evaluation of personnel and whether or not that 42 should continue to be done by the City Wasn't that part of the 43 discussion? 44 45 Duncan It was part of the discussion And in fact that was something that we're 46 carrying forward as something that probably should be explicitly 33 I addressed by revisiting the bylaws and the MOU/MOA to say exactly what 2 the role of the board is It is clear that the board did not have an interest in 3 micromanaging the staff, but that the accountability of the MPO officer to 4 the board and the board's involvement in decisions regarding MPO Staff is 5 something that needs to be revisited and worked out in more detail 6 7 Cadena Through the MOA. 8 9 Duncan Through the MOA, yes It was felt that everyone who discussed this 10 basically seemed to agree that that should be explicitly spelled out. 11 12 Cadena I think that'll work. 13 14 Archuleta Mr Chairman My comment is, and I'm glad that you all decided to stay 15 with the City of Las Cruces to co-locate with us We've gotten used to 16 their faces 17 18 Perez. Mr Chairman 19 20 Cadena Yes 21 22 Perez. I think I'd like to add to the third bullet, maybe this is just an oversight or 23 maybe just a point of semantics, but the role of the MPO with the City and 24 issues of development review I think we just proved in the last hour and a 25 half that that needs to be City and County as well because we're not 26 getting MPO input. Some of that is because of the co-location issue We 27 just don't have we can't get our little grubby paws on you when we 28 need to, but really that's as important if not more important with the County 29 and the fact that the County feeds into the City and we see that with 30 drainage issues as well, but certainly with transportation issues Having 31 that better defined with our development group and with our planning 32 department would be invaluable 33 34 Cadena Councilor Thomas 35 36 S Thomas And should it maybe also should we also be talking to the schools, 37 given our discussion the last hour and a half? 38 39 Perez. I think I can volunteer the County I'm sure I can volunteer the schools 40 41 Jones Mr Chairman 42 43 Cadena Yes 44 45 Jones Maybe if we may, maybe at looking at amending these I don't know if this 46 is we're not going to vote on, I think it's an update, but maybe we 34 I should consider something that says instead of with the City, says with 2 interested parties or interested governmental parties 3 4 Duncan We can include that language, just in the way of background, sort of the 5 context of that particular recommendation had to do with what is the 6 because the MPO staff are also City employees, you know 7 8 Cadena There's a perceived conflict of interest. 9 10 Duncan Yeah, it was perceived as it did that needs to be delineated We can add 11 either an additional recommendation or add some language that their role 12 with respect to all the members of the MPO we can address the County 13 and the schools I think there's a way that can be 14 15 Cadena I think that'd be a good idea Anyone else? Let's go forward 16 17 Duncan The second issue had to do with the staff and composition the size 18 rather and composition of the MPO Staff The discussion there really 19 revolved largely around the possibility of an on-call engineer and the need 20 for the availability of engineering expertise to the MPO staff, and at times 21 to the Policy Board, who is acting on behalf of the MPO The 22 recommendation is that the staff should research the possibility of making 23 someone like that available Obviously one of the obstacles being the 24 funding and the budgetary considerations, but looking at what the job 25 description for such an engineer would be, identifying the talent pools from 26 which a part time or on-call engineer could be recruited Developing an 27 annual budget for how much it would cost the MPO to have such a person 28 available and how much such a person would be utilized And then to 29 summarize for the MPO board the information of the first three bullets as 30 well as the key features and benefits and costs to the member 31 organizations of having that engineer available so that a decision can be 32 made about both the feasibility and the desirability of acting on that and 33 we felt that if that were done that you would have a fairly actionable way of 34 making that determination and possibly making that resource available 35 And that was the only recommendation we had on the issue of staffing Is 36 there any discussion in issue two, questions? 37 38 Cadena No, I think its ideal situation The intent is great and I think we need to 39 have that in place The issue of budget will be something else 40 41 Duncan Onto issue three Another issue that had come up in the initial 42 assessment was the utilization of transportation and GIS models And 43 pursuant to some of the input received it should be pointed out that you 44 know some people, this was much more important than it was to others, 45 but there were a number of stakeholders who were really interested in 46 getting the most out of the models and the GIS that are available One of 35 I the recommendations is to fully utilize annual training provided by New 2 Mexico DOT general office and New Mexico DOT has actually been 3 working on this at the same time as this study has been progressing and if 4 there are more questions for exactly what is available now, the DOT staff 5 are here But in particular latest modeling methods and professional 6 instruction for the New Mexico MPOs as well as new approaches to GIS 7 applications and professional instruction and collaboration with the MPOs 8 throughout the state are things that the New Mexico DOT has been 9 working on and we're recommending of course that the MPO fully utilize 10 that. And also we're recommending that the Las Cruces MPO Staff initiate 11 and coordinate quarterly and ad hoc user groups with the neighbors in EI 12 Paso to look in particular at how the models available to both MPOs could 13 be used together collaboratively, pulling their collaborative knowledge and 14 data and other resources to understand regional traffic patterns As well 15 as the best ways to combine and apply GIS resources and spacial data, 16 as well as some potential shared planning applications in these and other 17 areas For example, when surveys are done and when other technical 18 investments are made to possibly leverage some efficiency by doing those 19 things together And so those were the two main recommendations One 20 had to do with utilizing the state and the other had to do with taking 21 advantage to the maximum possible of collaboration with EI Paso I don't 22 know if New Mexico DOT has anything to add on the training or if there 23 are any questions 24 25 Cadena Councilor Thomas 26 27 S Thomas Yes, we've been working on a big mapping project in the City and also 28 with County assistance too, public lands for public uses and so we've 29 been trying to make sure that those people are also talking to our MPO 30 and the EI Paso MPO So I think this is great, everything that we have 31 here, but I think it goes beyond just the MPOs We've got these other 32 groups around There's also some kind of state project that's working, and 33 so I think we are at the verge here in this state of doing a tremendous 34 amount of mapping and we need to all be these maps need to be able 35 to talk to one another And I know in some areas of the state and some 36 other MPOs that you had for examples, that the MPOs are you know joint 37 MPOs were sort of the place where all these maps resided And so one of 38 the big problems here I think is that we don't have sort of agreement 39 across you know what's going on in Santa Teresa and the County and the 40 City and MPO and EI Paso, so that these things all reside in some place 41 that everybody knows where they are and we all know how to acces them 42 and we know they all have the same kind of symbols and scale and all 43 those things So, I don't know if that's something that needs to be in this 44 report, but it's something we definitely need to be very aware of 45 36 I Duncan If there were a term, if one were to take this recommendation a step 2 further, we might use a term like regional information architecture, or 3 something of that type 4 5 S Thomas Yes 6 7 Duncan That says we'll have consistent formats and that the MPO might 8 collaborate with that. It's not something that's been discussed at length 9 But if there's an interest in that, you know it can be discussed now or we 10 can discuss it with staff in the next week or so before the 11 recommendations come out. 12 13 S Thomas Can I just say that I mean I was the one who sent you all the comments on 14 this and the main thrust of my comments I think was that I want to see the 15 MPO be much more proactive and really step up and take some 16 responsibility and leadership in these areas And so if this kind of if 17 other MPOs and other areas have stepped up and coordinated the 18 regional vision and gotten everybody together to make sure we do have 19 things like regional information architecture, then I think that should be on 20 our list of goals 21 22 Cadena I think it's a point well taken about collaboration and so that we're not 23 duplicating efforts involving (inaudible) I think the comments from 24 Councilor Thomas, or if the two of you could communicate to try to 25 incorporate any of that into this, I think that'd be the best way to do this 26 27 Duncan Any other comments or questions about issue number three? 28 29 Cadena Let's move on 30 31 Duncan We'll move on to issue number four The fourth issue had to do with 32 committee coordination and the possible utilization of various citizens' 33 committees If you recall this is something that quite a bit of time at the 34 workshop was spent on and we spent quite a bit of time sort of looking at 35 different concepts and models of how that might work. What we came up 36 with as a recommendation would be that the Policy Board would change 37 the bylaws to recognize the appropriate need and role for ad hoc 38 committees to be created, either committees or task forces around specific 39 issues, but that they would have it would have to address how the ad 40 hoc committees are established and dissolved, so that they don't just sort 41 of go on you know the kind of we forget what they were ever there for 42 and also that the mission and scope of the committees is clearly defined in 43 a way that you can really tell when they have in fact served their purpose 44 And that the composition of such committees is determined There was 45 significant dialogue at the workshop about how to get different 46 constituencies and different parts of the committee involved in the 37 I planning process and that some of these special committees could be 2 opportunities for whether it be the ESL community or other communities to 3 be more involved with the MPO and that that is something that could be 4 addressed and a change of bylaws to look at really how best to utilize 5 those committees The other recommendation pertaining to committees 6 would just be that the BPAC and TAC member reports are a standing 7 agenda item for the Policy Board This is a little bit different than what 8 past practices have been and my understanding is that staff has often 9 reported on the actions of the other committees and a recommendation 10 would be that whenever possible that that standing agenda item be to 11 actually have a member of each of those committees present with the 12 Policy Board whenever there's a meeting so that there can be some direct 13 dialogue And so those were the two I think those were the only, yeah 14 there were only two recommendations for issue four and we'd be 15 interested in taking any comments or entertaining any questions about 16 this 17 18 Cadena I think exactly what you put up there is what we need to do, all those 19 issues you know as far as committees, they all need to have definition, 20 otherwise we're not getting anywhere 21 22 Duncan Okay Onto issue five The fifth issue is one that we kind of struggled with 23 because I don't think that obviously we're talking about a very important 24 relationship for the MPO is the relationship with the Federal Highway 25 Administration And given obviously the constraints on FHWA it's not fully 26 within the control of anyone who is heavily involved with the discussions, 27 however, we did feel that it was appropriate for the MPO board to extend 28 through its officer an annual invitation for the FHWA to come and address 29 the MPO Policy Board Of course, whether they come would be 30 determined by their resources and availability But also that possibly the 31 address could be seen as something that's both to the MPO and the New 32 Mexico DOT district. That perhaps if the MPO and the district both were 33 to request and say you know we'd really like to get together and hear from 34 you all in the same place, that that might be a meaningful way of 35 approaching them And that was the recommendation that we had for 36 how to reach out to FHWA. 37 38 Cadena I think it's a great idea Does the department have an opinion? 39 40 Matthew- Ray Matthew, New Mexico Department of Transportation planning 41 division We have been in conversation with FHWA about this and 42 actually have been in conversation with the management of the planning 43 division about the study FHWA indicated that they would like to do an 44 annual round of meetings for all the MPOs They would prefer to do it in 45 conjunction with the planning division director, Oliver Wright. And the 46 intent would be that they would both be at one meeting, at least one 38 I meeting a year for every MPO Initial discussions indicate that they're 2 going to try and make the February 11th meeting The reason for that is if 3 you recall this study came about out of a meeting with the Mayor and with 4 the City, MPO staff, and the County MPO Staff, Tom Macias Staff, and 5 FHWA and New Mexico DOT And so they had an interest in seeing this 6 study conducted and seeing you know the ways to improve the MPO as 7 well as you know the DOT and the MPO itself, so they're going to try and 8 make the meeting but I don't have a firm commitment on it, but yes, 9 they're in favor this idea, and if I could just add a little something about the 10 facilitator and the MOA. We also did look into the reworking of the 11 Memorandum of Agreement and how that would be carried out. 12 Throughout these series of recommendations, you're going to hear that 13 the Memorandum of Agreement is going to be the mechanism that we can 14 make some of these changes, for example, voting structure We talked 15 about defining the role of the MPO in relation to City and County and RTD, 16 you know duties and things like that. So right know we're thinking that we 17 will contract for a third party to come and mediate that Memorandum of 18 Agreement, a new one, and that would occur within the next three or four 19 months after the recommendations are formerly adopted 20 21 Cadena Great. It seems like we're being proactive Councilor Archuleta 22 23 Archuleta Mr Smith I remember that we also talked about having a New Mexico 24 DOT representative from this area as a member of the board, what 25 happened to that? 26 27 Duncan That is actually a recommendation on another issue that we're going to get 28 to before the presentation is finished 29 30 Cadena Anything else? Let's move forward 31 32 Duncan Issue six Actually kind of a good segue, had to do with integration of New 33 Mexico DOT into the MPO process The first recommendation there is in 34 fact, as Councilor Archuleta had pointed out that the district one engineer 35 will serve on the Policy Board, and that this would be reflected as part of 36 the voting structure of the MPO in a new MOU/MOA, as well as in the 37 bylaws themselves In addition to that, a recommendation that we're 38 putting out is that a member of the state house and state senate 39 delegations are included in Policy Board membership There was quite a 40 bit of discussion about how legislative initiatives and things that are 41 supported by members of the legislature often affect the TIP process and 42 there are things that happen at the MPO And there are some issues 43 regarding what it means to have a quorum and other things that might 44 have to be considered based on the availability of legislatures, but a 45 recommendation is being suggested that they would be invited to be on 46 the board Also, the New Mexico DOT general office, it's recommended 39 I that they will provide a briefing on district investment targets for the state 2 transportation improvement program as that is being developed And 1 3 think that New Mexico DOT staff can talk a little bit more to what those 4 district targets mean and why it's very important for the MPO Policy Board 5 to be briefed on them and how that might change the process So I would 6 invite Ray to talk a little bit about what that really means 7 8 Matthew- Thank you Chandler We had quite a bit of discussion on this item and 9 this came out of the workshop The suggestion was that the Las Cruces 10 MPO staff be invited to the STIP development meetings and those occur 11 on an annual basis The first is district targets and I just want to explain 12 what district targets are The state gets the Federal money in one lump 13 sum if you will when it's annually set by congress through the 14 congressional action Then the state divides it up to each district based 15 on population and land miles, so at the beginning of that process every 16 district has a target that they get based on the population and the lane 17 miles within their district. From that target they kind of work backwards 18 and get into the individual programs and projects So the 19 recommendation is that when that information is developed, when we 20 know what we're going to get from the Federal government and we know 21 what each district portion of that is going to be, the Las Cruces MPO 22 would be invited to that meeting District one, in conversation with district 23 one recently they are also suggesting another thing that isn't included on 24 the slide because it just came up, and that is to have a joint workshop with 25 EI Paso MPO and Las Cruces MPO to discuss the targeting, you know 26 how the target levels and how they came about, how they are developed, 27 and things like that. So that recommendation isn't on the slide show but 28 we will include that in the write up that you'll see, I believe it'll come out 29 February 4th is when the write up will come I just wanted to add that 30 about the targets We really spent quite a time you know discussing this 31 issue 32 33 Cadena Comments, questions? Go ahead 34 35 Duncan The next issue is the issue of MPO funding, which is another one that 36 there was quite a bit of discussion and a lot of input about. The first 37 recommendation is that the Policy Board would consider implementing a 38 fee for service schedule for services that are outside of the MPO's core 39 function And as part of this in the final report we would give examples of 40 how that works in some of the other MPO areas and also that's another 41 thing, that with the MOA/MOU there would be perhaps a more explicit 42 definition of you know what is a paid service and what is a core MPO 43 service But we would recommend that probably a schedule very similar 44 to what the Olympia, Thurston MPO uses and we would provide that 45 example for the board to look at when considering whether to accept that 46 recommendation The second recommendation regarding funding is to 40 I again try to include Dona Ana County financial participation as an item in 2 the MOU/MOA negotiation process to try to get participation from the 3 County And then also that the MPO staff would include a coordinated 4 projects line item on the unified planning work program and it meet at least 5 biannually to nominate and consider coordinated planning projects What 6 that means is those are projects that have a special match from City or 7 County If there's a lot of interest by one of the member organizations to 8 do a planning study that the MPO could join into, it might make the pie 9 bigger in terms of being able to look at certain issues and to be looking on 10 an annual basis at opportunities to do that as part of the UPWP process 11 Those were the three recommendations on issue seven 12 13 Cadena We have the three County Commissioners here and they can have input. 14 But I think now's the time I'm sure that the County, Brian Haines and 15 everyone is starting their budget process so it would be appropriate staff 16 that we send them a letter on what we're going to be asking here so that 17 they're made aware of it and if any of the Commissioners can 18 communicate to him or through the budget process what's occurring here 19 20 Perez: Mayor Cadena, at risk of making this even a longer evening, I'm going to 21 leave that one alone and just say that there's a little bit more to this issue 22 than just meets the eye, but that would be very helpful, is getting that 23 expectation on the table and then we'll deal with collateral issues as they 24 come, but having that expectation and getting it into our budget process is 25 an excellent recommendation and I appreciate Thank you 26 27 Cadena Tom if you want to take charge of that letter, or if you feel more 28 comfortable, maybe as Chair I should be the one sending it or whatever 29 works best, if the Committee agrees to that. 30 31 Jones Mr Chairman I think that letter would be best from you 32 33 Cadena Okay So let's work together staff and try to get that letter and start that 34 communication 35 36 Duncan Any other comments or questions on the funding issue? 37 38 Cadena Comments, questions? 39 40 Duncan The next issue pertains to the Long Range Transportation Plan The first 41 recommendation on the Long Range Transportation Plan is that in the 42 next LRTP update that certain performance areas are defined and they 43 may include areas such as safety, mobility, sustainability, freight 44 accessibility, energy conservation, and others Those are areas that really 45 come through the stakeholder involvement process and the LRTP The 46 second recommendation is that with those performance areas there be 41 I somethings that the MPO can measure and benchmark within each area 2 There are examples of that that we will provide in the final report for the 3 Board to consider to get an understanding of sort of what that looks like 4 Also, using the public involvement process of the LRTP to look at 5 prioritization ranking criteria for MPO funded projects And probably those 6 criteria, that goes along with another recommendation that they be 7 developed sort of together with New Mexico DOT But that the ranking 8 criteria for projects are tied to the LRTP process and to the public and 9 stakeholder outreach that goes with that. The way that would probably 10 work would be with a point system, where points to be satisfied you have 11 to be within a certain performance area There have to be certain 12 expectations of what the project would accomplish and how that fits in to a 13 larger set of MPO goals Then along with that among the criteria for 14 projects in the LRTP, a recommendation is to look at a land use 15 compatibility score to see you know how, and that particular thing is fairly 16 subjective, but to take the opportunity to look at whether major 17 improvements or major things that are called for in the LRTP, how they 18 stack up with the comprehensive plan and the zoning ordinance which is 19 the last recommendation there, but to actively look at those things within 20 the context of the LRTP Because really to look at how compatible 21 nominated transportation projects are with land use, as well as given that 22 combination of land use and transportation investments, how will you do 23 relative to your performance measure For example if you're doing a 24 project and you're saying we want safety, that's really important, well you 25 have to look at how the compatibility of this transportation improvement 26 given this land use, how does that help the safety So there are a number 27 of recommendations for the LRTP 28 29 Cadena Councilor Thomas 30 31 S Thomas Everybody's looking at me I understand that EI Paso MPO uses some 32 software called Urban Slim, anybody familiar with that? The description of 33 it was that they use it to integrate it's an integrated planning and 34 analysis of urban development and it incorporates the interactions 35 between land use, transportation, and public policy 36 37 Duncan Could that be Urban Sim, maybe? 38 39 S Thomas Sim, Urban Sim Simulation 40 41 Murphy- Mr Chair, members of the Committee, we have Efren Meza from the EI 42 Paso MPO here in the audience and I think he can address some of the 43 details of Urban Sim 44 45 Meza Again, Efren Meza with the EI Paso MPO Yes, we do use Urban Sim in 46 terms of creating some demographic mappings and in terms of 42 I determining forecasting some population and land use forecasting It's 2 used so far in our metropolitan transportation plan which is the equivalent 3 to the LRTP that you all have here, is slim We've used it a little bit in the 4 past, but we are looking at using it more, maybe not for the mission 2035 5 MTP which is the next MTP that we'll be producing this year, probably be 6 in June, but for the following one afterwards The next MTP that we're 7 producing is a little too close to be using Urban Sim and we had lost some 8 staff members that were in charge of using the Urban Sim program for out 9 MTP 10 11 S Thomas But this might be an area that we could do some collaboration with this 12 technology 13 14 Meza Yes, most definitely We have already done some collaborating with 15 Cuidad Juarez in order to incorporate some of their modeling as well in 16 that aspect. 17 18 Cadena. That answer your question? By the way, thanks for being here tonight. 19 20 Meza. Oh, no problem, no problem Thank you We got the invite Actually, we 21 get several invites from the Las Cruces MPO and we wanted to be here 22 for this particular item as it is I'll be making some comments I think on 23 one of the issues, but I'll do that at the end of his whole presentation 24 25 Cadena Very good 26 27 Meza Thank you 28 29 Duncan I think one of the earlier issues had been issues of utilization of GIS and 30 models and collaborating with El Paso on that and we can call out Urban 31 Sim as an opportunity within that recommendation, specifically if there 32 sounds like there's a strong interest in that, any other comments on the 33 recommendations pertaining to the LRTP? 34 35 Perez. I guess I have a question related to the Urban Sim, Mr Chairman With all 36 of the demographic modeling and the land use planning that we're doing 37 within the Vision 2040, is there no ability to extend that model to 38 accomplish virtually the same thing and I apologize, this isn't really my 39 area of expertise But when we're doing this kind of long range planning 40 land use compatibility, it seems like we're already putting money into that 41 and have a good step forward in demographic and land use models as 42 part of that plan Are they not am I talking apples and oranges and I'll 43 take your word of it if I am 44 45 Duncan I'll let Tom address the issue of modeling, of Urban Sim type modeling 46 However, with issue eight these recommendations have to do with policies 43 I in the Long Range Transportation Plan that actually says about you 2 develop the program within the context of the comprehensive plan and the 3 zoning ordinance How you identify needs through modeling is where 4 things like Urban Sim and the visioning process come in and Tom you 5 could probably speak more to that specific time 6 7 Murphy Mr Chair, Commissioner Perez, the specific land use model that the 8 Vision 2040 is using is called Community Vis And the City and the 9 County will own that model after the process of it. MPO staff has been 10 invited to the table and has been involved with working on pretty much all 11 aspects of the vision 2040 1 guess then it would be a matter of seeing 12 and we'll be able to use those land use projects developed out of 13 Community Vis to help update our model, and then it's probably just a 14 matter of seeing where the technologies mesh and then try and align them 15 up and to coordinate with EI Paso But I think those resources will be 16 available to us and then we can explore those opportunities 17 18 Perez. Thank you 19 20 Cadena Thank you Tom, anyone else? All right, where are we? 21 22 Duncan The next issue had to do with improving the TIP process And the first 23 recommendation there is to utilize the standing DOT agenda item at the 24 Policy Board meeting for at least one annual address from the DOT 25 district, walking through STIP development. Now again this is within the 26 context of the other recommendation that the district engineer will be on 27 the board But that annually there is an address from the DOT talking 28 about projects that are under consideration by the DOT, how they can be 29 brought into the STIP It is recommended that the DOT would address 30 this board on all projects, even if they are not funded by the MPO, if they 31 are relevant to the performance areas that the MPO is concerned with or if 32 they have regional significance that could affect the MPO We'd like for 33 them to be considered and presented to this board for context if nothing 34 else And then also that DOT staff would answer any and all questions 35 about the STIP and DOT projects so that this board is fully aware of where 36 that process is and how it's moving forward, that sort of goes along with 37 some of Ray's earlier comments about district targets, but also looking at 38 district projects So there is full transparency there between the MPO 39 board and what's happening at the DOT The second recommendation is 40 through a facilitator, again the MOU/MOA process, that it would be 41 basically called out that there would be one scoring process for all of the 42 projects programmed through the MPO That the DOT when they're going 43 into the STIP and the MPO and they're going into the TIP, that those 44 processes are specifically designed to match and to have the same 45 criteria, the same weights, the same basic, you know that projects are 46 going to be looked at pretty much the same way Again, non-MPO 44 I projects, while the MPO doesn't have to program state funded projects 2 and certain other types of projects, it will be good for those projects to at 3 least be discussed during that prioritization process so that its understood 4 by the MPO board, hey there's this other project and it's going to affect the 5 need that's being addressed by the ones that the board is looking at for 6 the TIP and those were the recommendations on issue nine and we'd be 7 interested in any questions, comments, also the DOT staff of course are 8 here 9 10 Cadena Ray, did you have anything on this? 11 12 Matthews An example of the last bullet would be the discussion on the new school 13 location that just occurred earlier in the meeting As far as the DOT 14 projects, that could be accomplished through a regular update process In 15 other words, you know we would if you had questions a project that 16 district is doing or you know we would give it at that time 17 18 Cadena Alright, anyone else on the Committee, public? Let's go forward 19 20 Duncan The tenth issue pertains explicitly to enhanced collaboration with the EI 21 Paso MPO As we've seen earlier in the presentation, there are a number 22 of areas where of other issues that that will help with, but also to 23 explicitly look for ways to enhance collaboration across different areas, 24 joint training activities, and that was already addressed when we talked 25 about technical capabilities, but to continue those whenever possible The 26 second recommendation had to do with the Las Cruces MPO staff having 27 a staff check in with EI Paso staff to initiate joint staff meetings at least 28 each spring and fall which could be times when opportunities for things 29 like Urban Sim and other things could be discussed Regularly occurring 30 agenda items that we would recommend would be discussed at least 31 twice a year; would be opportunities for regional studies like the upcoming 32 OD telephone survey, if there's a regional initiative to do land use 33 transportation modeling, and other things of that nature Opportunities for 34 regional and joint thoroughfare planning in particular is something that we 35 thought should always be on the agenda there and would recommend 36 also that the agenda always include opportunities to coordinate regionally 37 on air quality conformity needs as air quality status can change And EI 38 Paso is dealing with a lot of those issues now and it's good for Las Cruces 39 to be involved as that moves forward so that it doesn't it's not a 40 completely new issue if and when that should come about. Also, there are 41 a lot of linkages to air quality between the two areas The third 42 recommendation there is that the Las Cruces LRTP update could specify 43 and enumerate certain EI Paso policies that are relevant to the Las Cruces 44 areas So if you have certain performance areas in the long range plan 45 and you identify certain policies in EI Paso, whether it has to do with 46 growth policy or annexation, or economic development, policies that the 45 I MPO will track in EI Paso to be aware of things beyond just what the MPO 2 is doing there, but other issues that are of regional significance and those 3 were the recommendations for issue ten, if there are any comments or if 4 EI Paso has anything to add 5 6 Cadena Comments by the Committee, questions? 7 8 Perez Mr Chairman, I just have one and this will probably be addressed by our 9 colleague from EI Paso It was my when we have a regional planning 10 organization and then we have the two MPOs on either end and can 11 somebody explain to me how this effort and this coordination with the EI 12 Paso MPO will dovetail into the regional planning organization 13 14 Meza I'm guessing that you're talking about the South Central MPO 15 16 Perez. Yes 17 18 Meza Okay, that is one thing we already do as the EI Paso MPO and the Las 19 Cruces MPO We already coordinate quite a bit with the South Central 20 Regional Planning Organization A lot of things that we look at are 21 commuting, disadvantages and advantages along the area around here in 22 the region We incorporate a lot of our planning with the RPO because of 23 the fact that the border issues that are around EI Paso and the Santa 24 Teresa area really affect the type of freight, the type of traffic that's going 25 through, whether it be tourism, freight, regular commuting, between the 26 two cities of Las Cruces and El Paso and to include Alamogordo, Deming, 27 along the south central region But we do actually coordinate quite a bit. 28 We don't coordinate as much as we do with the Las Cruces MPO or how 29 we coordinate with Ciudad Juarez, but that's because it's harder for us to 30 get together at certain times You know there's so much on the agenda 31 that you can put on But I know that we are looking at including a new 32 meeting within I think this spring as a matter of fact. We were looking 33 at February but it looks like that might have to be pushed out more maybe 34 into late or early spring But we do plan on having another meeting We 35 meet they used to meet quite often They used to actually meet 36 biannually They used to meet about every 6 months, but now it's slowed 37 down a little bit because of just certain things that have been going on in 38 terms of budgets for everybody to come down, etc But that's on our 39 aspect. I'm not too sure if the Las Cruces MPO has another coordination 40 effort. 41 42 Murphy- Thank you Efren We do quite a bit of coordination with the RPO One 43 case in point is you know the two organizations are jointly managing the 44 regional transit district which was actually born of some of those meetings 45 that Efren referenced from a larger regional basis We get the e-mails of 46 1 all their meetings They get e-mails of all our meetings, and you know we 2 talk quite frequently with the staff and the RPO 3 4 Archuleta Mr Chairman I have a question Either I dreamed or I read it somewhere 5 that the south central Council of governments and the EI Paso MPO were 6 working only railway If that's something is that true? 7 8 Meza There is some consideration in planning for a possible light rail system 9 between EI Paso and Las Cruces As a matter of fact I was hoping to 10 speak to Joseph de la Rosa on that particular topic There will be some 11 movement towards seeing if there can be some kind of coordination with 12 BNSF, possibly UP, in trying to get some kind of light rail commuting 13 between Las Cruces and EI Paso, and even possibly maybe between 14 White Sands and EI Paso The reason for this is just because there is just 15 so much going on in terms of the price of gasoline and the amount of 16 commuting that's going on between the two cities, the three cities actually 17 So, the steps are moving forward The first steps are actually starting to 18 move forward now, but it is long into the future for that. 19 20 Archuleta Well that leads to another question, since the number of people at White 21 Sands is larger than from Las Cruces than it is from El Paso, why would 22 you want to start there instead of Las Cruces to White Sands 23 24 Meza No, well, in terms of Las Cruces to White Sands I'm not too sure about 25 that aspect, but from the first point of entry into EI Paso would be from Las 26 Cruces to EI Paso because that's where most of the commuting is coming 27 from, Las Cruces to EI Paso and vice versa 28 29 Archuleta Okay, thank you 30 31 Cadena All right, did you have anything else on your presentation 32 33 Meza Yes, actually one of the first things I wanted to do was to actually thank 34 the Las Cruces MPO and the coordinating agencies, Wilbur Smith, in 35 inviting EI Paso MPO to collaborate within the workshop, the Location 36 Study Workshop and being able to give our input. We wanted to let the 37 Las Cruces MPO know that, and the board, that the EI Paso MPO is really 38 anticipating and looking forward to getting together and creating some 39 kind of joint meeting as we said that we would mention a meeting in the 40 spring to find out when and where and what time we can actually do our 41 joint board meeting together because the EI Paso MPO board they meet 42 in the morning on Friday's, the first Friday of every month, and you all 43 meet in the evening So we're looking at really looking forward to 44 coordinating this joint meeting because I think it's going to be vital to the 45 type of regional planning that we have here within this area That's really 46 about it. Like I said, we were happy to be able to put some kind of input 47 1 into the Location Study Workshop that you all had and we look forward to 2 more opportunities and coordinating efforts with the Las Cruces MPO 3 4 Cadena. I'm sure we'll have them, thank you, anything else staff? 5 6 Duncan Any other questions or comments on issue ten? The final issue had to do 7 with training opportunities which actually were addressed to some degree 8 as the answer to the earlier technical issue of GIS and modeling, but it 9 was training in and of itself was identified as an issue that we wanted to 10 look at. And it was sort of see that there are different types of training 11 opportunities that we would recommend One is just to continue and 12 develop the MPO 101 agenda item at Policy Committee meetings 13 involving New Mexico DOT staff Again, this is a recommendation that's 14 really pretty much already in place, but we wanted to basically formalize 15 and say that this is helping because everyone felt like it warranted 16 inclusion in the recommendations and also that the MPO staff actively 17 participate in that New Mexico DOT training which was also 18 recommendation of issue four But possibly there are other areas for 19 training that are not currently offered that we would recommend the MPO 20 staff explore with the state and with professional associations One of 21 them is training on funding mechanisms I mean a very good example is 22 to the Safe Routes to School and other things where the more that the 23 MPO staff understand about how to get funding for things the more of the 24 other recommendations can be implemented and other things can be 25 accomplished Also, in addition to the New Mexico DOT staff, Federal 26 Highway Administration web NR and American Planning Association 27 offers web NR that are very affordable for MPO staff and we recommend 28 that they research those on a regular basis and have a regular training 1 29 don't know whether you call it curriculum or lust that there's always a 30 constant you know a few months out, what the trainings are going to 31 be 32 Another important thing for training is special conferences, 33 workshops, and training opportunities to make sure that things like AMPO 34 and APA continue to be available to the MPO staff because those are 35 often things that are easy to cut when funding is low We wanted to 36 recommend trying to keep those available and also identifying designating 37 a budget for Policy Board members to periodically attend those things 1 38 know there are Policy Board members who do that and sometimes do it 39 on their own initiative and that's wonderful, but we feel like things like that 40 are really important. I think even just at tonight's meeting there was 41 discussion of the APA conference and you know how much it helps when 42 Policy Board members can have opportunities to go and get involved with 43 things like that. And of course there are some of the perceptions and 44 things, but I think we all agree that it was important to try as much as 45 possible to include Policy Board members in training opportunities And 48 I those were the recommendations regarding training Are there any 2 comments or questions on those? 3 4 S Thomas Yes, I have 5 6 Cadena Yes, Councilor Thomas 7 8 C Thomas I would invite other members to go to some of these conferences because 9 sometimes I'm the only elected official and then all the weight falls on one 10 person 11 12 Cadena That's the way we want it. 13 14 C Thomas I still want to lobby for what I saw Florida MPOs do which is to they got 15 together and they put together a training course for new board members 16 and every time there's an election and board members need training, they 17 set up a two-day workshop somewhere in the state for all the newly 18 elected Policy Board members to come to that training And that seemed 19 to be a very good idea and it gave them opportunity to you know cross 20 fertilize from one MPO to another And the other suggestion was that just 21 to try to I mean we're close to EI Paso, we need to work with EI Paso, 22 but we're New Mexico and we have different regulations and policies and 23 so it would be nice if we had more contact with other MPOs in the state 1 24 know at a national MPO conference I spent a lot of time with a woman 25 who's now the mayor of Aztec and planner from Farmington and that's 26 been a really good discussion I'd like to see us pursue more of that. 27 28 Duncan So there's a suggestion for a state MPO Policy Board training Is there 29 comment about, we can discuss that. 30 31 Matthew, Texas does a similar thing I guess you had mentioned Councilor Thomas 32 They sponsored training It wasn't just for newly elected officials I don't 33 know if they're still doing it. I think it's been a while, but the intent was to 34 basically test DOT in this case provide training for the Policy Board in EI 35 Paso What you're suggesting though is that on an annual basis the DOT 36 and perhaps FHWA and the MPO staffs develop a package that they 37 would do over a two-day period for any newly elected official to any MPO 38 Policy Board 39 40 S Thomas I don't know that the DOT and the Federal were involved It was I went 41 to a they did an abbreviated version of their workshop that I went to and 42 the MPOs that they have, a state organization of just of the MPOs and 43 together they had developed this training And it was whenever there 44 was an election and they could see around the state there were several 45 new members of various Policy Boards around the state, then they would 49 I pull those people together so that they you know got on top of it right 2 away 3 4 Cadena Thank you Councilor Thomas 5 6 Duncan Any other comments or questions on the training issue? 7 8 Cadena I think we just want to thank you for all the work that you've done with this 9 and I think the point is that you're still taking comments for another 10 week or so? 11 12 Duncan Yes, we will be taking individual comments for the next week. 13 14 Cadena It looks like everybody is meeting out, so what I would suggest is that in 15 your sleep or wherever you figure out, think about these issues, that you 16 continue to submit your suggestions through e-mail or whatever 17 18 Benavidez. Mr Chairman, can I make a suggestion It was a wonderful presentation 19 Being new at this, the only thing that I was having a little difficult time is 20 trying to figure out the certain acronyms that you put on here I guess if 21 you could just spell it out you know what LRTP means for example I was 22 asking Councilor Thomas what does this mean But yeah it was a good 23 presentation, but I believe that in the future you might want to you know 24 just tell us what those acronyms mean Thank you 25 26 Duncan We can include a glossary of terms in the final report. 27 28 Benavidez. Thank you 29 30 Cadena Good idea 31 32 Duncan So yeah, we will be taking comments through 21 January, which is a week 33 from today We will be basically developing final recommendations about 34 the week following that and we'll be taking comments and changes from 35 staff and then by your February 11th meeting we do expect to have your 36 report a week in advance of that meeting And then subsequent actions 37 on recommendations after the report is finalized will be incremental and 38 you can decide what to implement and when and so forth And that's 39 pretty much where the study is headed And with that we're pretty much 40 finished here 41 42 Cadena Let me suggest if we're going to have that a week in advance that 43 everyone take the time to read through it and make your suggestions prior 44 to the meeting so we can already have the discussion going before the 45 meeting 46 50 I S Thomas And I just passed around what my response would be so you know Don't 2 have to repeat. 3 4 Duncan You can submit comments directly to Tom by e-mail and he can forward 5 them to us 6 7 Cadena If we don't already have an e-mail list for everybody, is that something we 8 can forward, especially with the new Commissioners, so we can 9 communicate in that way? 10 11 Duncan Thank you again for inviting me 12 13 Cadena Thank you 14 15 Murphy- Yes, Mr Chair, we do maintain a list. We just need to get two more new 16 ones tonight or the next day or so 17 18 Cadena Okay, thank you 19 20 8.4 Staff Updates 21 22 Cadena. We're on Staff updates Again, I'm going to encourage that you guys go 23 through and summarize the best that you can Of course, we're open to 24 questions from the Committee, even the public, but if something that you 25 need in detail, I would recommend that you e-mail or call the staff at your 26 convenience 27 28 8.41 Transport 2040 update 29 30 Murphy- Yes, Mr Chairman, we will go through this pretty quickly Transport 2040 31 is proceeding We're continuing doing stakeholder meetings Tomorrow 32 we have a stakeholder meeting at the SCORE, that's the Small Business 33 Start up group In the next month or six weeks from now, we are still 34 ironing out the dates, we will have five or six public meetings, the initial 35 public meetings on the Transportation Plan update We will keep you 36 apprised of those dates and locations so that you can attend And then 37 we've convened the TAC subcommittees for technical assistance on the 38 details of the Transportation Plan update 39 40 8.4.2 TIP open Call for Projects 41 42 Murphy- The TIP open call for projects We did receive eight projects I'll let you 43 read the list. As noted from the Public Schools, we are anticipating some 44 more TIP projects We will have these ranked through the BPAC and the 45 TAC and we'll have them back to you in April for your vote for ranking 46 them 51 1 2 8.4 3 MPO Quarterly Meeting Update 3 4 Murphy- I had a long quarterly meeting agenda update The Las Cruces MPO and 5 EI Paso MPO, we meet quarterly with the NMDOT staff and the other 6 three MPOs in the state, Farmington, Santa Fe, and Albuquerque We 7 discuss the issues that are relevant to all of us and what the latest goings 8 on are Particular, I'm going to narrow this down, this is in the line of 9 funding Funding among the five MPOs are currently allocated on 10 population as per the 2000 census We're looking at requesting that that 11 be changed through the state Through the past couple of years the 12 Albuquerque MPO area, the mid region Council of governments has 13 developed a backlog of MPO funds that they've been unable to find a local 14 match for They have got a million dollars that they have been unable to 15 spend and they came to the rest of the MPOs and say, let's redo the 16 formula for allocating those We've begun discussions with NMDOT on 17 that reallocation and FHWA advised us that you know we need to bring 18 the Policy Committees in on the discussion even though we told them that 19 when asked if they would like more money the answer would probably be 20 yes, but I am here tonight to ask if you would like more money if possible? 21 22 Perez. Yes 23 24 Jones Mr Chairman, I think we ought to talk about that a long time No, I think 25 we all agree that more money's good 26 27 Murphy- And then the final staff update has to deal with the common boundary 28 between us and the El Paso MPO Here's the southeast portion of our 29 MPO boundary The next slide is going to be a slide, and this came out of 30 the TIP application process, particularly the County application for Benno 31 Road where this kind of little sawtooth of the EI Paso boundary You know 32 created a lot of coordination, say headaches as far as who's TIP that 33 project would go on, and it's been suggested by the EI Paso MPO that we 34 re-draw the boundaries to make the boundary itself Berino Road so that 35 Berino Road would be entirely within the Las Cruces MPO area and be on 36 our TIP, and then that we would absorb I guess the center of the Village of 37 Berino into our boundaries EI Paso MPO is going to put that through their 38 technical and policy committees They're looking for comments from us, 39 particularly the Policy Board here on what the thoughts are of essentially 40 expanding the Las Cruces boundaries to incorporate that portion of 41 Berino 42 43 Perez. Mr Chairman 44 45 Cadena Yes 46 52 I Perez. This maybe a really silly question, but why does the MPO boundary not 2 follow the state line? Why would the EI Paso MPO boundary, and no 3 offense, but why would it cross into New Mexico and split Berino down the 4 middle? 5 6 Murphy- Mr Chair, Commissioner Perez, the MPO boundaries are established, the 7 primary thing that you start to look at is the urbanized areas per the 8 census projections And the EI Paso urbanized area actually does cross 9 into New Mexico and has been for quite a while Sunland Park has been 10 part of the EI Paso MPO area for a while People who live in Sunland 11 Park, their travel shed is the EI Paso metropolitan area, it's not the Las 12 Cruces metropolitan area In 2005 when both MPOs expanded their 13 boundaries, EI Paso expanded that up and they really viewed that the 14 people of Berino were traveling more into EI Paso than they would be 15 traveling into Las Cruces And so we agreed that that would be the 16 adequate boundary at that time But the short answer is its less state lines 17 than it is travel sheds 18 19 Cadena That's why the importance of the cooperation between the two MPOs, but 20 1 think as chair I have no issue with straightening out that particular line, 21 taking out that block. Does anyone else? 22 23 Perez. Yeah, frankly And not taking out that notch as much as I have splitting 24 the planning for a community down the middle It's certainly not a 25 discussion for tonight, but I guess I would like a further discussion at some 26 point of when we're doing that kind of planning, the infrastructure in Berino 27 straddles that line, water, waste water, other kinds of infrastructure, 28 drainage, things that impact the roads and those intersections, and it 29 seems it's interesting that we would split the transportation planning, 30 I'm sorry what did you call it? 31 32 Murphy- Travel shed 33 34 Perez. It's really a travel shed, like water shed? 35 36 Murphy- It's a similar theory 37 38 Perez: That's a neat vision The travel shed would not work in parallel with other 39 infrastructure So again, much too long a conversation for tonight, but 1 40 know the ongoing problem with Berino Road Certainly, we want to see 41 that money spent and the drainage taken care of and, yes now the 42 importance of cooperating with the EI Paso MPO just smacked me right up 43 the back of the head That's a big selling point there I just flat didn't 44 realize that. I learned something new Thank you Mr Chairman 45 46 Cadena Thank you Did you want to enlighten us with something? 53 1 2 Meza Just one really quick comment and that was one of the issues that was 3 really the only concern that we had was splitting the community almost in 4 two there However, we thought it might be an issue with Federal 5 Highway Administration, saying well when it comes to public involvement 6 what are you going to do, who takes care of it, etc However, the 7 community is small enough as it is The only regionally significant road in 8 there is Berino Road The rest of the local roads are just what add to that 9 particular roadway So, we figured, gee the majority of the right-of-way on 10 Berino Road was already in the Las Cruces MPO boundary, so this little 11 portion here was so small of a portion that it really wasn't very significant 12 in terms of just giving it all to the Las Cruces MPO, and actually making it 13 easier for coordinated planning 14 15 Perez: Thank you 16 17 Cadena. Thank you All right, Tom 18 19 Murphy- I think that gives me some basis for providing comments to the EI Paso 20 MPO request. I'm only bring this forward as a discussion item as I just 21 learned about it. If it's to go forward, it would come back through the TAC 22 and the BPAC and this Committee as a transportation amendment. So 23 this is really just your first glimpse at it. 24 25 Cadena. Alright, very good 26 27 Murphy, That will handle it for staff updates 28 29 8 4.4 NMDOT news and updates 30 31 Cadena. Department of Transportation 32 33 Matthew- Sorry I have some news about the stimulus package My supervisor, Pat 34 Oliver, the planning division director, asked me to deliver to the meeting 35 tonight specifically Of course, we're going to have a new president in a 36 few days and a stimulus package bill is in Committee right now and being 37 worked on The latest news that we got from FHWA is that it would come 38 under the Title 23, the current funding regulations, so basically there are 39 some parameters that would be in place already The first one is that it 40 would have to be a federally functionally classified road to receive funding 41 under this The amount they're looking at is $25-75 million The time that 42 they're looking at, the most optimistic is that the president would sign the 43 bill on President's day, so it would be fairly quick under the best case 44 scenario The eligibility requirements that the project be ready to 45 construct within 90 days, and by ready to construct there is quite a bit of 46 list of things that means the design would have to be complete, the right- 54 I of-way would have to be complete, utilities complete, environmental 2 clearances all done, and advance construction would not be reimbursable 3 So, that's kind of a quick overview of what's going on, but if it makes it out 4 of the committee and makes it to the president's desk and everyone 5 agrees on it, we could be coming back before you with a request to amend 6 your TIP based on the projects that we have that were submitted by the 7 MPO But first, we would be going through that list to make sure that they 8 meet these criteria Federally functionally classified and ready to 9 construct in 90 days 10 A couple of other quick things, there were some air quality issues 11 that came up recently I just got news of it before I went on my Christmas 12 vacation to Phoenix and it kind of spoiled things There was an air quality 13 exceeded in the southern part of the Dona Ana County at Sunland Park. 14 The readings in Las Cruces were still quite a ways away from the Federal 15 standard The New Mexico Environmental Department is going to prepare 16 an application to EPA to have only the southern part of Dona Ana County 17 designated as a non-attainment for ozone Normal procedure is that they 18 designate the whole County, which would include Las Cruces MPO and if 19 that's the case then the planning process would change considerably 20 We'd have to go through transportation air quality conformity We're 21 hopeful that EPA you know looks favorably upon that application which 22 would be they're preparing it right now We've been working with the 23 Las Cruces MPO to get the data they need for the New Mexico 24 Environmental Department application to EPA. And we'll keep you posted 25 on anything we hear about that. And we'll probably send you like a 26 summary of the EPA application or the application to the EPA. 27 The third thing I want to comment on is the funding What Tom had 28 mentioned coming out of the MPO quarterly, that's the planning funds So 29 it's not the capital project funds for your TIP It's the planning funds that 30 the staff would get. The formula that they're looking at would allot the 31 smaller MPOs more money that they've previously been getting So I just 32 wanted to clarify 33 34 Perez. Mr Chairman, can I ask for a clarification? 35 36 Cadena Yes 37 38 Perez. On the stimulus package, and you were talking really fast and I'm sort of 39 getting tired, so maybe I missed something there The only funding that 40 will be considered under the stimulus package for road projects are 41 federally designated highways No local roads, no state roads, no other 42 road infrastructure projects, only federally designated highway 43 44 Matthew, Federally functionally classified, so that would be 45 46 Perez What does that mean? 55 1 2 Matthew- State roads It would be a major urban collector or above 3 4 Perez. Okay Thank you 5 6 Cadena And you also said, you mentioned utilities would have to be in place, so 7 this is strictly road construction? 8 9 Matthew- Well utilities for the road construction, utility clearance, so if they were 10 going to reconstruct or construct a road they would have no problems like 11 running into utilities Whatever utility arrangements they would have to 12 make that would already be taken care of 13 14 Cadena Okay Councilor Thomas 15 16 S Thomas Thank you My understanding on the air quality issue is that the New 17 Mexico Environmental Department has to have their report in sometime in 18 March? 19 20 Matthew, That's correct. 21 22 S Thomas But then EPA has until March of 2010 to decide how they're going to rule 23 right. 24 25 Matthew, That's correct. 26 27 S Thomas So we do have some time here but well we're kind of wondering where 28 we're going to have to go 29 30 Matthew- Yes, the New Mexico Environmental Department is preparing the 31 application even as we speak to be submitted to the EPA by March and 32 after that EPA has quite a while to make the determination If they 33 determine whatever area they determine is nonconforming, whether it's 34 the southern part or all of Dona Ana County, at that point whatever area 35 that is then that area the planning process would change entirely You'd 36 be looking at every project you would have to prove an air quality benefit 37 and go through quite a bit of analysis Right now, the readings are 38 significantly lower, the reading for Las Cruces was 0 62, and the standard 39 is 0 75 The exceedance in Sunland Park was 0 76 1 could go into, 40 provide you with a lot more detail if you want it, maybe in an e-mail or 41 something like that, because there's more to it. 42 43 Murphy- Mr Chair, members of the Committee I have the presentation that the 44 environmental department gave at the Sunland Park meeting I can e-mail 45 that to everyone 46 56 I Cadena Yeah, just forward that to everyone please 2 3 8 4 5 Development Review 4 5 9 COMMITTEE AND STAFF COMMENTS 6 7 Cadena Any further staff comments? Committee comments? 8 9 10 PUBLIC COMMENT 10 11 Cadena Any public comments? 12 13 11 ADJOURNMENT— (7 45 p.m ) 14 15 Cadena I'll entertain a motion to adjourn 16 17 Arzabal So moved 18 19 Cadena Anyone opposed? We're adjourned 20 21 22 .� 23 24 25 26 Chairperson 27 57