Tag Archives: legislation
Posted in Codes & Regulations | Current Events | Politics | Transportation
Last summer and into the fall, we heard about Governor Corbett’s Transportation Funding Advisory Council (TFAC) and their recommendations to fund the necessary transportation improvements in Pennsylvania. You can read my previous post regarding the TFAC here. Well, a foundational part of the TFAC report was approved two weeks ago by the PA Legislature, and on Thursday, July 5th, Governor Corbett signed this legislation into law.
The key bill, House Bill 3, allows public-private partnerships, or P3′s, to be formed where private equity is used to fund transportation improvements in PA. This private investment will fund roads, bridges and other transportation infrastructure improvements, instead of using tax-payer dollars. The private investment group then gets a return on their investment through user fees or tolls that they are allowed to levy on the transportation element that is improved. This offers the investor a consistent revenue stream, and gets Pennsylvanians a roadway, bridge, railway or other transportation on a faster time table than can be done with public revenue streams.Comments (2) | Permalink | Tags: Governor Corbett, House Bill 3, legislation, P3, Pennsylvania, Public Private Partnership Bill, TFAC, Transportation Funding Advisory Council
Posted in Codes & Regulations | Municipal Services
With the New Year usually come new laws. Finally, a highly anticipated regulatory revision takes place in 2012, which will likely lower the cost of doing business for many local governments, municipal authorities and school districts. It’s an adjustment of limits for advertisement requirements for bids in Pennsylvania.
Act 84 of 2011, effective January 1, will increase the minimum dollar amount to advertise and seek bids for purchases and contracts from the current threshold of $10,000 to $18,500. In addition to increasing the current bid threshold, Act 84 will makes changes to the minimum amount necessary to seek telephone quotes for purchases and contracts to between $10,000 and $18,500. Any purchase a local government, municipal authority or school district makes that costs less than $10,000 will not be subject to the state’s bidding and advertising requirements. Smartly these minimum bid amounts will be adjusted annually based on changes in the Consumer Price Index. The PA Department of Labor and Industry will issue an annual change to the minimum bid amounts by January 1 of each year.Comments (2) | Permalink | Tags: Act 84, Bid limits, Consumer Price Index, legislation, local government, Minimum bid amount, Municipal Authorities, Municipalities, PA, PA Department of Labor and Industry, Pennsylvania, PSATS, Wage Rate Law
Posted in Bridge Design | Codes & Regulations | Economic Development | Politics | Transportation
Image © 2011 Google Maps
A few years ago, I conducted research for my independent study during my senior year at Lafayette College. My study was part of the 2006 Infrastructure Report Card for the State of Pennsylvania. Living in one of the oldest states in the union as well as a state that has frequent freeze-thaw cycles, I did not have high hopes for the grades the roads and bridges would yield based on their condition, performance, capacity, and funding needs. Turns out, I was correct. Pennsylvania roads received a grade of “D” (meaning poor on the grading schedule) while the bridges did slightly better with a grade of “C” (meaning mediocre). The release of the report card caused commotion and called for government officials to fund infrastructure maintenance programs. In 2009, the Obama Administration provided $27,115,533,955 through the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) for Transportation projects around the country, with Pennsylvania receiving $1,098,699,760. In 2010, the American Society of Civil Engineers published the 2010 Infrastructure Report Card for the State of Pennsylvania. I was eager to see the results from the four years of infrastructure improvements. Sadly, I was disappointed. The bridge rating remained a “C” while the roads grade dropped to a “D-”. I was determined to find out why this was the case. It turns out that although the funding from the ARRA was helpful, it is not nearly enough for the upkeep and maintenance of Pennsylvania’s 22,280 bridges and 40,000 state and 76,000 local miles of roadway.Comments (3) | Permalink | Tags: ARRA, Bridges, conditions, Funding, Infrastructure Report Card, legislation, PA, Pennsylvania, Roads