Presentation by the Department of Transportation
TRANSPORTATION LEGISLATION REVIEW COMMITTEE
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09:10 AM -- Presentation by the Department of Transportation
Senator Gibbs, Vice Chair, called the meeting to order. The committee observed a moment of silence in honor of U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy.
Executive Director Russell George, Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) and Mr. Doug Aden, representing the Transportation Finance and Implementation Panel, testified before the committee regarding state transportation matters. Mr. Aden provided an update on the work of the Governor's Transportation Finance and Implementation Panel (Blue Ribbon Panel). He provided background on current revenue projections to support the state highway system and discussed expected needs. Materials were provided to the committee members (Attachments A, B, and C).
Mr. Aden provided further statistics regarding current challenges to statewide transportation, specifically aging infrastruction and structually deficient bridges. Mr. Aden responded to questions from committee members. Senator Williams stated that she would like additional information regarding Blue Ribbon Panel recommendations. Representative King asked Mr. Aden about statistical analyses of highway and road accidents.
Executive Director George discussed current revenues generated through Senate Bill 09-108. Senator Williams asked Executive Director George to discuss the number of bridges classified as structurally deficient according to each of the CDOT regions. Senator Renfroe asked if Senate Bill 09-108 directed revenues according to region or based upon a different allocation method.
Executive Director George discussed time frames and requirements for new projects to go to bid. He further discussed the Senate Bill 09-108 Transportation Deficit Report.
Executive Director George discussed budgetary changes resulting from passage of Senate Bill 09-228. He also provided information on the implementation of Senate Bill 09-094 to establish a new CDOT Division of Transit and Rail.
Executive Director George provided information on CDOT's use of federal funds received through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA). Approximately $385 million was provided to Colorado for highway projects. A map of ARRA-funded projects was provided to the committee members (Attachment C).
Executive Director George discussed the federal reauthorization of the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act - A Legacy of Users (SAFETEA-LU). Congress is currently considering an 18-month extension of the current authorization bill. Executive Director George responded to questions from committee members. Senator Kopp asked about the use of public-private partnerships in transportation projects.
Representative Vaad discussed challenges in maintaining statewide transportation infrastructure. He asked Executive Director George about the potential benefits of devolving state highways from the state highway system.
Representative King asked Executive Director George about motor vehicle registration late fees established under Senate Bill 09-108. Senator Williams discussed the use of ARRA signs posted at the location of ARRA-funded projects. She further asked Executive Director George to elaborate on ARRA funds provided for transit projects.
Senator Renfroe asked Executive Director George about CDOT collaboration with the Colorado congressional delegation regarding the SAFETEA-LU reauthorization.
Representative Baumgardner asked Executive Director George to discuss planned levels of service for snow removal on certain roads. Representative McFadyen commented on the distribution of ARRA funds across the state.