Senate Transportation Committee


2004 Minutes


January 20, 2004
January 22, 2004 - Joint Meeting
January 27, 2004
January 29, 2004

Februay 3, 2004
Februay 5, 2004
Februay 10, 2004
Februay 12, 2004
Februay 17, 2004
Februay 19, 2004
Februay 24, 2004
Februay 26, 2004

March 2, 2004
March 4, 2004
March 9, 2004
March 11, 2004

DATE: January 20, 2004
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
PLACE: Room 426
MEMBERS PRESENT: Chairman Ingram, Vice Chairman Keough, Senators Geddes, Brandt, Bilbao (for Little), Bailey, Calabretta, and McWilliams


Senator Marley
Chairman Ingram called the meeting to order at 1:30 p.m. Caitlin Lavelle, from Borah High School was introduced as the page assigned to the Transportation Committee for the first part of the current session.

Chairman Ingram indicated administrative rules for the State Tax Commission and the Idaho State Police would be reviewed today. He turned the gavel to Vice-Chair Keough who conducted the rules review hearing.

Rules Review State Tax Commission (Motor Fuels Tax)

Randy Nilson, Tax Policy Specialist for the State Tax Commission, reviewed Docket Number 35-0105-0301, (IDAPA 35), Rule 270, that is being amended to clarify which motor fuel users who have single storage tanks cannot use the pro-ration method granted in Subsection 170.05 of that rule. It will also remove reference to 26,000 pounds maximum gross weight and list which motor fuels users who do not qualify to use the proration method because of other record-keeping requirements.

Motion: Senator Brandt moved and Senator Bailey seconded a motion to accept proposed rule changes to Docket Number 35-0105-0301 regarding motor fuels tax. The motion was approved by voice vote.

Vice-Chair Keough turn the gavel back to Chairman Ingram.

Committee Discussion Chairman Ingram discussed various handouts regarding transportation issues.
Recess The Committee recessed at 2:05 p.m. to await the arrival of Capt. Lamont Johnson from the Idaho State Police.
Reconvene Chairman Ingram reconvened the meeting at 2:25 p.m. and turned the gavel to Vice-Chair Keough to continue the rules review hearing for the Idaho State Police.
Rules Review Idaho State Police (Motor Carrier Rules)

Capt. Lamont Johnston, Commercial Vehicle Safety, Idaho State Police, reviewed Motor Carrier Rules with the Committee. Docket Number 11-1301-0201 (IDAPA 11) will add the Adoption of Registration Enforcement; Part 356 - Authority to Serve a Particular Section - Construction; Part 365 - How to Apply Operating Authority; Part 387 - Financial Responsibility. The rule will also update the Code of Federal Regulations to correctly show volume October 1, 2002. Docket Number 11-1301-0201 (IDAPA 11) incorporates by reference a version of 39 CFR Parts 393 and 395,

effective January 4, 2004, governing commercial vehicle load securement and driver hours of service, respectively.

Motion: Senator Calabretta moved and Senator Brandt seconded a motion to accept the proposed rule changes to Docket Numbers 11-1301-0201 and 11-1301-0301 regarding motor carrier rules. The motion was approved by voice vote.

Vice-Chair Keough returned the gavel to Chairman Ingram.

Adjourn: The meeting adjourned at 2:55 p.m.

DATE: January 22, 2004
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
PLACE: Gold Room (Room 420)
MEMBERS PRESENT: Senators Present: Chairman Ingram, Vice Chair Keough, Senators Geddes, Brandt, Little, Bailey, McWilliams, Marley

Representatives Present: Chairman Wood, Vice Chair Ridinger, Kellogg, McKague, Smith (24), Bedke, Bauer, Skippen, Wills, Shepherd, Douglas



Senator Calabretta

Representatives Roberts, Cannon, Cuddy

House Chair Wood called the Joint Senate/House Transportation Committee meeting to order at 1:35 p.m. and welcomed all those present. She introduced former Senator Bruce Sweeney who is a current member of the Idaho Transportation Board.
Report Multi-State Highway Transportation Agreement (MHTA)

Rep. Skippen reported on an MHTA meeting she attended November 9-11, 2003, in Las Vegas, Nevada. Others from Idaho attending were Chair Wood, Alan Frew from the Idaho Transportation Department, Capt. Lamont Johnston from Idaho State Police, and Paul Sudmeier from the Idaho Trucking Association. The following states are members of MHTA: Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Washington, and Wyoming. The purpose of the meeting was to allow communication between the states to achieve uniformity for the transportation industry. States were given the opportunity to discuss issues within their own states, to share ideas, and to learn about new technology. Idaho could be affected by food bioterrorism and rules concerning the agriculture exemption from hours of service. An agency within U. S. DOT issued a proposed rule stating that poultry, livestock and feed grains are not commodities. Rep. Skippen voiced concerned that such definitions need to be in the law rather than issued by rule and she plans to introduce legislation to that effect.

RS 13674 Motor Vehicle Titles; Terminal Rental Adjustment Clause

Edwin E. Huddleson, III, a commercial attorney from Washington, D.C., representing the American Automotive Leasing Association, Enterprise Leasing of Idaho, and the Equipment Leasing Association, introduced RS 13674. He explained that this legislation would clarify that motor vehicle fleet leasing contracts that contain Terminal Rental Adjustment Clause (TRAC) provisions are true leases for state and bankruptcy law purposes. The clause permits an upward or downward adjustment of rent to make up for any difference between the projected value of a vehicle and the actual value upon lease termination. The objective of TRAC vehicle leases is to provide a financial incentive for the lessee/user, who is the party to the transaction best able to control the maintenance of the vehicle and to keep the vehicle in good repair. TRAC vehicle leasing is limited by federal tax law to commercial business and does not involve leasing to consumers. A handout is attached to the minutes.

Motion: Since RS 13674 will be introduced in the House initially, only House members voted on the motion by Rep. Hilde Kellogg to introduce RS 13674 for print. The motion was seconded and approved by voice vote.
Rules Review

House Chair Wood turned the meeting over to Senate Vice-Chair Keough to conduct the rules review process.

Idaho Transportation Department

39-0247-0301 Rules Governing Revocation of Vehicle Registration

Amy Smith, Idaho Transportation services Manager, said SB 1064 (2003) amended Section 49-520, Idaho Code, eliminating the requirement to use certified mail when sending a revocation of vehicle registration. The change was effective July 1, 2003. The rule is being amended to comply with those changes, with the same effective date.

39-0316-0301 Oversize Permits for Non-Reducible Vehicles and/or Loads

Alan Frew, Port of Entry Operations Officer for ITD, indicated SB 1064 (2003) amended Section 49-1010, Idaho Code, allowing trailers used in the transport of implements of husbandry to be exempt from over-width permitting requirements. The change was effective July 1, 2003. The rule is being amended to comply with those changes, with the same effective date.

39-0322-0301 Overlegal Permits for Extra-Length Vehicle Combinations

Alan Frew, Port of Entry Operations Officer for ITD, indicated the change increases the maximum vehicle length of 105 feet overall to 115 and clarifies that all permitted Longer Combination Vehicles (LCV's) (except triple combinations) are required to have the off-track form completed as part of the permitting requirements. The rule also clarifies the operating and reporting requirements for those vehicles participating in the pilot project.

39-0341-0201 Traffic Control Devices

Lance Johnson, a traffic engineer for ITD, explained this rule updates the incorporation by reference, adopting the most recent publication of the MUTCD, including Revision Number 1, dated December 28, 2001, and identifies 19 specific exceptions. The exceptions are necessary to bring the MUTCD in line with Idaho Code, correct errors, and accommodate the operations of ITD and local transportation agencies. The exceptions have been approved by the FHWA and Local Highway Technical Assistance Council.

39-0343-0301 Utilities on State Highway Right-of-Way

Jonathan Lenhart, a utility/railroad engineer for ITD, indicated the rule-making adds new sections and removes language already in the incorporated document. The document incorporated by reference has been updated with input from the affected parties and has been reviewed and approved by the utility companies and FHWA. It retains the basic information but reorganizes and reformats the content in a more user-friendly style. Internal procedural information was moved into a staff manual. Some guidelines were made less restrictive to provide more flexibility in issuing permits to the utility providers.

39-0346-0301 Studded Tires (Chapter Repeal)

Greg Laragan, Assistant Chief Engineer/Operations for ITD, indicated that HB 231 (2003) effective July 1, 2003, incorporates the provisions of IDAPA 39.03.46 into Idaho Code, eliminating the need for this rule.


Traffic Accident Memorials

Steve Holland, a staff engineering assistant for ITD stated that changes to the rule included removal of the gold star as the only allowable traffic accident memorial; new guidelines for fabrication and placement of traffic accident memorials; includes a prov/ision for removal of non-conforming memorials; requires for notification of adjacent property owners before placement, includes guidelines for safety of the participants when on the state highway system. This action will bring the rule into compliance with changes to Section 49-1316, Idaho Code, Senate Bill 1137 (2003), effective July 1, 2001.

Senate Vice-Chair Keough returned the gavel to House Chair Wood when the rules review process was completed.
Adjourn The meeting was adjourned at 2:45 p.m.

DATE: January 27, 2004
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
PLACE: Room 426
MEMBERS PRESENT: Chairman Ingram, Vice Chairman Keough, Senators Brandt, Bilbao (Little), Bailey, McWilliams, Marley, Calabretta


Senator Geddes
MINUTES: Senator Keough moved that the minutes of Tuesday, January 20, 2004, be accepted as written. The motion was seconded by Senator Bailey and approved by voice vote.

Senator Bailey moved that the minutes of Thursday, January 22, 2004, be accepted as written. The motion was seconded by Senator Marley and approved by voice vote.

Presentation Idaho Transportation Department
Chuck Winder, Chairman of the Idaho Transportation Board, began his presentation by showing an 8-minute video that explained what the Idaho Transportation Department is, what its accomplishments have been through the work of its employees, and what the Legislature has been able to accomplish through its oversight of the Department. A strong transportation system strengthens Idaho by driving its economy; i.e., more than $2.5 billion has been invested in construction and maintenance over the last six years, construction sustains approximately 14,000 private sector jobs, and Idaho's aviation system supports an estimated 26,000 jobs. The Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century known as TEA-21 increased funding by a record 62%. The federal bill expired in October, 2003, and a 5-month continuing resolution was passed in November. Congress reauthorizes the bill every six years and that should be accomplished in the next few months.

In the future, people's patterns are not going to change; surface transportation will still need to be provided throughout Idaho and that transportation will have to be inter-modal in its nature. It will require hard work, using money diligently to provide the types of services people demand. One of the visions that the Idaho Transportation Board has established is connecting the state because it will help the economy; there are major projects in progress throughout Idaho. There have been more than 1,800 highway improvement projects and 55 new bridges funded. Also transit funding has expanded mobility for Idahoans, and

airport projects have improved runways, operations and security. ITD is interested in mobility for all of Idaho not just urban areas.

When asked what the Idaho Legislature could do when it was mentioned that the Forest Service is trying to close four backcountry air strips (a decision being appealed by ITD), Mr. Winder suggested that the Legislature introduce a joint resolution specific to the appeal process. Senator Bailey will work with the House to introduce that legislation.

Mr. Winder reviewed many services provided for motorists and truckers. ITD partners with counties to register more than 10 million vehicles, to complete 3 million title transactions, and to issue 1.8 million driver's licenses and identification cards. ITD also is involved in helping promote tourism and economic development especially in rural areas within Idaho. There are 3 new metropolitan planning organizations (MPO's) bringing the number to six; these local-planning organizations prioritize their projects which makes it more efficient for ITD to determine where money should be spent. ITD also works closely with citizens, city, county and state leadership, and holds public information meetings and hearings.

He reminded the Committee about a 1995-94 legislative task force that dealt with ITD efficiency measures. Since that time there has been a 62% increase in federal funds while the workforce has increased only 1%. That was accomplished through privatization, employees accepting more responsibility, and giving modest merit increases based on savings within the Department. ITD has implemented over 60 efficiency measures saving $4.2 million in one-time savings and another $1.6 million in on-going savings. Those savings were accomplished by reducing ground maintenance, grant administration, the dispatch system was combined with the state dispatch system savings 14 full time positions. The Department has ongoing efficiency measures evaluation and a quality assurance team that meets regularly. ITD continues to look at safety measures; i.e., use of seat belts, high-accident areas, and aggressive driving, etc. ITD supports the 3 "E" program: enforcement, engineering, and education.

The Idaho Transportation Board has established a 25-year vision with the assistance of others. Dave Ekern, ITD's new Director, will discuss the Department's future.

Dave Ekern, the new Director of the Idaho Department of Transportation, discussed the Department's future and its challenges. The presentation has covered the past history and accomplishments of the Department; that is important because to respect history is to establish the future. Everything that has been accomplished in the past has occurred because of people working together. ITD relies heavily on its executive team made up of six division heads: Jim Ross, Chief Engineer, Division of Highways; Charlie Rountree, Division of Transportation Planning; Susan Simmons, Division of Administrative Services; Mo Detmar, Division of Motor Vehicles, and Larry Falkner, Division of Public Transportation; Bob Martin, Division of Aeronautics, along with Julie Pipal, Budget, Policy, and Intergovernmental Relations.

ITD is engaged in transforming transportation in this country and this state. From 1956 to 1992 the single focus was building the 42,000 mile interstate system across the United States. The transportation community was then challenged to find another mission. Today transportation has four dimensions: international in its scope, inter-modal and integrated in its form, intelligent in character, and inclusive in its service. Transportation agencies are not just building organizations as they were in the early days. Transportation must come to the table with a new mix of products and services­things beyond highway construction that include information for customers. The use of technology must be increased; i.e., computer-aided design, automatic vehicle location, etc. Partnerships and inter-agency alliances must be relied on; private sector relationships must be redefined; workforce skills must be reshaped and upgraded, transportation projects will need to rely on innovative financing. In the future transportation professionals will not be just traditional engineers; it will require a new mix ­ a person who is customer focused, innovative in reducing barriers, technologically savvy, and entrepreneurial in attitude.

Transportation professionals are now focusing on three major topics: 1) leadership through planning and performance (understanding what the customer wants, turning that into performance measures, and reporting it), 2) program delivery (delivering programs more efficiently, more effectively, on time, in budget), and 3) systems operations and management.

The transportation department in the Twentieth Century was characterized as public works focused, project focused, focused only on specific jurisdictional responsibility, worked the traditional hours of 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, did business "as usual," and did it "our way." In the Twenty-First Century the transportation department will be focused on mobility (outcomes), customer-oriented, system-focused, "24x7" service, proactive, performance-driven, and focused around partnerships.

Since the new Director was hired last summer, the Idaho Transportation Department has been looking at what should be done short-term and long-term (in the next 30 years). To date ITD has determined Idahoans want ITD to become 1) more active in helping solve area-wide transportation problems (not strictly focused in corridors in geographic and jurisdictional areas); 2) focus on managing and operating the system (to provide new services, deal with congestion, and improve safety; 3) preserve transportation options including airports, transit, and critical corridors; 4) focus on financing and investment for the future (finding new and different ways to finance needed transportation priorities without raising taxes).

There are 4 main things Idahoans want in transportation's long-term future: 1) multi-modal systems that gives them choices, 2) a system that preserves the quality of life they have come to expect that respects their history and protects their environment, 3) be engaged in the decision-making business, and 4) want to achieve transportation within the bounds of reasonable funding.

The foundation is solid, there is a good history, and it is important to build on what has been learned. The challenges are numerous. Safety is a priority, the Department needs to understand the transportation system as a tool for growth, strengthen community involvement programs, provide statewide access to public transportation, improve Idaho's airport system, use innovative financing tools for growth, and lastly and a very key point, each project delivered needs to be an asset to the community, environmentally compatible, the best in engineering and construction excellence, and delivered on time and in budget. Considering the above challenges, the executive team will focus on the following four areas in the next three years: 1) improving program and service delivery, improving safety and security, enhancing system operations, and supporting Idaho's economic health. In looking to the future, the progress will be challenging because good progress has already been made to date. It will require a partnership with the Transportation Board, the Legislature and the Governor to define those steps.

Solutions to transit are not accomplished by a single entity suggesting a change; today customers want multi-modal choices. The goal is to bring agencies and customers together to talk about what makes the multi-modal choices usable. The core of transportation problem-solving is awareness of the problem, engagement with agencies to find the right range of solutions, and then obtaining funding to solve the problem - that is what partnerships are about.

Solving problems in the future will require a balanced set of solutions, using technology to operate systems different from in the past, with alternative choices.

General Discussion Jack Jones, a former member of the House of Representatives who currently serves on the Capital City Task Force for AARP and also serves on the Area III Advisory Council on Aging, said the issue of transportation is discussed frequently. Public transportation in many rural areas is non-existent so the issue is very important to seniors.
Adjourn The meeting was adjourned at 2:55 p.m.

DATE: January 29, 2004
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
PLACE: Room 426
MEMBERS PRESENT: Chairman Ingram, Vice Chairman Keough, Senators Geddes, Bilbao (Little), Bailey, McWilliams, Marley, Calabretta


Senator Brandt
MINUTES: Senator Bailey moved that the minutes of Tuesday, January 27, 2004, be accepted as written. The motion was seconded by Senator Keough and approved by voice vote.
Rules Approval Approval of rules for the Idaho Transportation Department will be the last item on today's agenda.
Presentation Idaho Transportation Department

Chuck Winder, Idaho Transportation Board Chairman, introduced representatives from the following five boards and commissions who consult with and advise the Idaho Transportation Department. Each representative will give a brief overview of his group.

Aeronautics Advisory Board

Scott Patrick, a member of the Aeronautics Advisory Board, said his Board consists of five members appointed by the Governor, subject to Senate confirmation. The other Board members are Chairman Rodger Sorensen, Bob Hoff, Kathy Miller, and Bill Parish (whose term just expired; Mr. Parish will continue serving until a new person is appointed this year). The key issue the Aeronautics Advisory Board is currently involved with is the Forest Service's closure of four backcountry airports. That decision is being appealed.

Automobile Dealers Advisory Board

Grant Peterson, Jr., Chairman of the Automobile Dealers Advisory Board, explained that the Governor appoints eight members for 3-year terms. The Board meets a minimum of three times a year and consists of five licensed new vehicle dealers, two licensed used vehicle dealers and Mr. Peterson who represents the recreational vehicle industry. his Board assists and advises the Idaho Transportation Department on how to make the auto industry better and more efficient and includes the administration and enforcement of the Motor Vehicle Dealer and Salesman Licensing Act. The Board works with the auto industry when legislation is needed on various issues. Last year a law was passed restricting the use of dealer plates. Currently there is an in-dealership program being piloted so consumers can register their vehicles through auto dealerships rather than making additional trips to the county assessor offices. One of the issues the Board is currently working on is providing identification cards for sales people in order to prevent identity theft.

Traffic Safety Commission

Jim Pline, a Commission member, explained that the Director of the Idaho Transportation Department appoints not more than 15 members to four-year terms. Two of the 15 members are the Chairmen of the Senate and House Transportation Committees. The ITD Director or his designee acts as chairman; currently Larry Vincent serves as Chairman. The Traffic Safety Commission meets in Boise three times each year.

The Commission's responsibility is to review traffic safety problems, develop effective plans for additional local-state cooperative activities, recommend programs to receive federal aid for highway safety, and recommend future traffic accident prevention activities. Current key issues the Commission deals with are impaired driving and aggressive driving, occupant protection, youthful drivers, bicycle and motorcycle safety, EMS, and traffic records. The Commission operates under a 3-year plan looking at accident occurrence within Idaho and projects relating to those issues. The staff of the Office of Highway Safety works on specific program areas; Mary Hunter works with restraint systems (seat belts) and other staff members work on impaired driving, graduated license system, etc. Idaho seatbelt usage is up to about 65-70% usage after 30 years of trying to educate the public on the issue.

Motor Carrier Advisory Committee (MCAC)

Jerry Whitehead, a member of the Motor Carrier Advisory Committee, explained that the Committee consists of 12 members serving staggered 3-year terms. They are a diverse group representing all areas of the state. Mr. Whitehead is the only non-trucking member who represents truck and trailer manufacturers. MCAC meets 3 or 4 times per year. The Committee's responsibility is to review proposed regulations, statutes and general issues relating to motor carrier matters. Current issues MCAC is working on include asking the federal government to lift the freeze on state highways, expanded routes for heavier trucks, the U. S. Patriot Act, reciprocity agreements with other states, registration and operating costs, and the hours of service issue. MCAC expects there will be more trucks on the nation's highways because trucks will run shorter hours due to the hours of service change. He listed as accomplishments the one-stop shop concept, MCAC's support for the reorganization of the ports of entry that moved control to the Idaho Transportation Department, and the Committee's help in making some of Idaho's routes/highways safer for truckers. In the future, MCAC would like the Legislature to use people on the committee as a resource because they have a lot of talent and knowledge regarding the industry.

Public Transportation Advisory Council (PTAC)

General Jim Brooks, Vice Chairman of the Public Transportation Advisory Council, reported the Council is composed of six members who serve 3-year terms; they are appointed by the Idaho Transportation Board and meet 3 to 5 times each year. Each of the six Transportation Districts is represented. PTAC annually reviews all grant applications for public transportation funding throughout the state and then makes recommendations to the Idaho Transportation Board on the granting of all federal funds and the state funds used for public transportation services. The great challenges public transportation faces today (since people think mobility is a right not a luxury) are threefold: 1) Idaho is becoming more urbanized and there is a need for transit systems; 2) in rural areas as people age, they want to stay in those rural areas; and 3) funding is a big issue. Twice the Legislature has said in some reports that a "stable, long-term funding base for public transportation should be identified." There is currently an effort to do that. PTAC works with Larry Falkner who is the Administrator of the Division of Public Transportation for ITD. Mr. Falkner has 3 grant managers, each assigned 2 districts. PTAC works with those staff people.

When questioned about another advisory committee, Charlie Rountree, Administrator of the Division of Transportation, ITD, explained that the purpose of the Enhancement Advisory Committee (EAC) was to review Transportation Enhancement Program applications and recommend projects to ITD. It is a $4 million statewide program. The members of EAC are staff people from other agencies typically headquartered in the Boise area.

Future Senate Transportation Committee meetings will review other boards and committees who work with the Idaho Transportation Department.

Chuck Winder, Chairman of the Idaho Transportation Board, expressed thanks and appreciation to all of those who serve in advisory capacities and share their wisdom and knowledge with the Idaho Transportation Board and the Idaho Transportation Department.

Presentation Budget Preview - Idaho Transportation Department (ITD)

Dave Ekern, Director of the Idaho Transportation Department asked Charlie Rountree to address the Committee briefly concerning the status of the federal highway reauthorization bill.

Charlie Rountree, Administrator of the Division of Transportation Planning for the Idaho Transportation Department, reported that the reauthorization bill has been approved by the Senate Committee and is going to the Senate floor for a vote. The bill will be held until the Senate Finance Committee figures out how to fund the bill; the Senate Banking Committee also has to act on a transit portion of the bill. The Senate bill involves $255 billion for highways over the next six years which would impact Idaho by $1.7 billion dollars or an increase of 35.5% for the 6-year period. The House has a bill in committee but it has not been voted on yet. If Congress does not pass the reauthorization bill by the end of February, it is hoped they will extend TEA-21 so Idaho can continue to fund federal programs within the state.

Dave Ekern, ITD Director, previewed the FY05 budget request summary (Governor's recommendations) with the Committee, a copy is held in the Senate Transportation Committee office. Mr. Ekern said the proposed budget is built around no anticipated funding increases and the recognition of anticipated federal aid at the TEA-21 levels which are built into the budget request. The base FY05 budget totals $425,910,300 with 1,833.5 full-time employees and an additional $1,066,000 in program enhancements. The recommended distribution of the $425,910,300 is broken down into the following 8 categories. Contract construction amounts to 56.7% or $241,599,800 of the budget with 100% of that amount being paid to private contractors and includes more than 300 projects including 15 bridge projects, 79 lane miles of improvements, 1,141 lane miles of paving, 47 safety and operations projects, 86 design and right-of-way projects, and 128 local highway projects. Highway operations represents 30.6% or $130,491,000 of the $425 million budget request with $74.5 million paid in labor (57%), $14 million in equipment (11%), and $42 million in materials (32%). A motor vehicles budget of 4.2% or $17,693,600; a public transportation budget of 1.0% or $4,217,100; an aeronautics budget of 0.8% or $3,416,800; and the remaining three areas of planning, administrative services and capital facilities represents 5.8% or $28,492,000.

Total Idaho transportation funding amounts to $715,600,000 with $$282.4 million coming from federal funds, $326.1 million from state funds, and $107.1 million from local funds.

Mr. Ekern reminded the Committee that ITD's mission is to provide high-quality, cost-effective transportation systems that are safe, reliable, and responsive for the economical and efficient movement of people and products.

Rules Approval

(two votes)

Senator Keough moved that the Senate Transportation Committee recommend that the following pending and temporary administrative rules for the Idaho Transportation Department (IDAPA 39), Docket Numbers 39-0316-0301, 39-0322-0301, 39-0341-0201, 39-0343-0301, 39-0346-0301, and 39-0363-0201 be approved. The motion was seconded by Senator Marley and approved by voice vote.


Senator Keough moved that the Senate Transportation Committee recommend that the following pending and temporary administrative rule for the Idaho Transportation Department (IDAPA 39), Docket Number

39-0247-0301 be approved. The motion was seconded by Senator Marley.

Roll Call Vote: Ayes: Senators Ingram, Keough, Bilbao (Little), McWilliams, Marley, and Calabretta

Nay: Senator Bailey

Absent: Senators Geddes, Brandt



On a 6-1-2 vote, the motion was approved.
Adjourn The meeting adjourned at 3:00 p.m.

DATE: February 3, 2004
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
PLACE: Room 426
MEMBERS PRESENT: Chairman Ingram, Vice Chairman Keough, Senators Geddes, Little, Bailey, McWilliams, Marley, Calabretta


Senator Brandt
MINUTES: Senator Calabretta moved that the minutes of Thursday, January 29, 2003, be accepted as written. The motion was seconded by Senator Bailey and approved by voice vote.
RS 13734C1 Highways; Placement of Political Signs

Senators Stegner and Bailey co-sponsored RS 13734C1 that would allow the placement of political signs on rights-of-way 30 days before until 3 days after statewide primary and general elections, subject to current restrictions. Last year the Idaho Transportation Department had a written policy allowing this action; this proposed bill puts that written policy into statute. Signs are not allowed on the interstate highway system.

Motion Senator Bailey moved, and Senator Calabretta seconded a motion, to introduce RS 13734C1 for print. The motion carried by voice vote.
RS 13700 Railroad Crossings of Highways; Cities/Counties can negotiate

Senator Pearce explained that RS 13700 would repeal Section 62-307, Idaho Code, to give counties the same ability cities have to negotiate directly with railroads without having to go through the Idaho Transportation Department.

Motion Senator Calabretta moved that RS 13700 be introduced for print. The motion was seconded by Senator Marley and approved by voice vote.
RS 13556 Motor Vehicle Law and Neighborhood Electric Vehicles (NEV)

Denise Brennan, Executive Director of the Idaho Automobile Dealers Association, introduced RS 13556 that would allow neighborhood electric vehicles to be licensed and titled for operation on certain public roads.

Motion Senator Marley moved that RS 13556 be introduced for print. The motion was seconded by Senator Bailey and carried by voice vote.
RS 13495 Driver's License Requirements; clarifications

Ed Pemble, Drivers Services for the Idaho Transportation Department, explained that RS 13495 would clarify several sections of Idaho Code regarding driver's license requirements, suspensions, disqualifications, and revocations. He called attention to a couple of those changes. The proposed legislation would codify the current practice to provide notification of sex offender registration requirements to individuals who have moved to Idaho from another state when they apply for an identification card. Another change occurred because of SB 1078 in 2003 which authorized a licensed physician's assistant and a licensed advanced practice professional nurse to certify permanent disabilities for driver's licenses purposes (license plates and placards). All other changes are non-substantive in nature and have no fiscal impact.

Motion Senator Marley moved, and Senator Keough seconded a motion, to introduce RS 13495 for print. The motion passed by voice vote.
RS 13500C2 Driver's Licenses; revise requirements - hazmat endorsement

Ed Pemble, Drivers Services for the Idaho Transportation Department, introduced RS 13500C2 that would revise requirements for commercial driver's licenses (CDL) and transporters of hazardous materials regarding the hazmat endorsement to conform with the new federal law. The proposed legislation would require applicants for a CDL hazmat endorsement to undergo a security background records check and receive clearance from the Federal Transportation Security Administration prior to issuance of a license with a hazmat endorsement. The requirement would apply to all first-time applicants and to those who renew or come from another state (even though they have the hazmat endorsement from the other state). It also adds a requirement that hazardous materials endorsement applicants provide proof of U. S. citizenship or proof of lawful permanent U. S. residence and a valid Federal Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services alien registration number at the time of application. It removes the option of having a hazardous materials endorsement on an instruction permit. The legislation is needed to keep Idaho's CDL program in substantial compliance with federal requirements; otherwise, there would be a loss of federal funding. The current implementation date is April 1, 2004, but ITD has requested an extension to December 1, 2004 because TSA is still working on the procedure details. The database holding all of this information will not be available to ITD; the Department will only be informed of the applicant's pass/fail status. Implementation costs might be covered by the federal government through a grant program but that information has not been provided to date.

Motion Upon motion by Senator Calabretta, seconded by Senator Marley, RS 13500C2 was introduced for print. The motion carried by voice vote.
Adjourn The meeting adjourned at 1:58 p.m.

DATE: February 5, 2004
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
PLACE: Room 426
MEMBERS PRESENT: Chairman Ingram, Vice Chairman Keough, Senators Geddes, Brandt, Bailey, McWilliams, Marley, Calabretta
EXCUSED: Senator Little
MINUTES: Senator Bailey moved that the minutes of Tuesday, February 3, 2004, be accepted as written. The motion was seconded by Senator Calabretta and approved by voice vote.
RS 13897C1 Public Safety and Protection; "Safe Routes to School"

Senator Werk introduced RS 13897C1, a bill he is co-sponsoring with Rep. Miller, that would provide funds for a Safe Routes to School grant program using a portion of existing funds in the Idaho Transportation Railroad Grade Crossing Protection Fund to be renamed the Public Safety and Protection Fund. The proposed legislation provides that one-third of the annual allocation but not less than $85,000 would be reserved for this program. The Idaho Transportation Department (ITD) would establish criteria for the grants that would be based on demonstrated need and potential for reducing child injuries and fatalities. ITD estimates it would cost $29,000 annually to fund a part-time grant administrator for the Safe Routes to School program.

Motion Senator Calabretta moved that RS 13897C1 be introduced for print. The motion was seconded by Senator Bailey and approved by voice vote.
RS 13762C1 Crime of Flooding Highways; not charged if recitified in 24 hours

Stuart Davis, Executive Director, Idaho Association of Highway Districts, explained that RS 13762C1 would amend Section 18-3908, Idaho Code, to allow a period of 24 hours from the time of written notification by governmental authority for the rectification of any highway flooding before criminal charges are brought against the violator.

Motion Senator Brandt moved that RS 13762C1 be introduced for print. The motion was seconded by Senator Keough and approved by voice vote.
RS 13773C1 Highway Districts; provide additional powers and duties

Stuart Davis, Executive Director, Idaho Association of Highway Districts, indicated that RS 13773C1 provides additional powers and duties to highway district commissioners, provides ordinance authority, and also provides for contents of ordinances. It also provides that in the case of a highway district that shares jurisdiction over the secondary highways

within a county, the county clerk shall be the keeper of the ordinances passed by the highway districts that are within the county.

Motion Senator Keough moved that RS 13773C1 be introduced for print. The motion was seconded by Senator Calabretta and approved by voice vote.
RS 13774C1

RS 13775C1

RS 13863

Highway District Commissioners; discretion on salary allocation

Dissolution of Highway Districts; provides alternatives/exceptions

Inverse Condemnation; process for resolution of claims

Stuart Davis, Executive Director, Idaho Association of Highway Districts, the sponsor of RS 13774C1, RS 13775C1 and RS 13863, requested that the proposed bills be returned to him.

Motion Senator Keough moved that RS 13774C1, RS 13775C1 and RS 13863 be returned to the sponsor. The motion was seconded by Senator Calabretta and approved by voice vote.

Com'l Driving

Schools Program

Commercial (Private) Driving Schools

Raegan Comperud, a lobbyist for the Idaho Association of Professional Driving Businesses, introduced the following two Association officers who explained their program and some of the problems they have encountered with statutes and rules governing their organization. They operate under rules and regulations of the State Department of Education. Twenty-six of Idaho's 36 driving schools are members of this Association. Dave Eiguren, the Association's Vice President, will have some closing remarks after the Department of Education presentation.

Mike Ryals, President, Idaho Association of Professional Driving Businesses, indicated he has 32 years of drivers training experience, 12 years as a commercial driving business owner. He has a Masters Degree in Secondary School Administration. Since 1998 when ITD moved to the third party testing program, he has been a state skills tester for drivers licensing.

His association feels there have been some unreasonable attempts by the Department of Education to micro-manage commercial driving schools. As regulations began to change a couple of years ago, commercial driving businesses determined that Idaho Code needed to be changed if they were to survive as businesses; they are not employees of the State or public schools. Commercial schools receive their revenue from tuition paid by students and adults for services they offer which include flexibility, smaller classes and individualized instruction. Association members are businesses offering a service.

Mr. Ryals discussed the following 8 areas (refer to Section 49-2102, Idaho Code) that are of concern to his association membership: (1) Specific regulations regarding equipment used, (2) Sources of instruction, (3) the requirement to provide previous records of the businesses and their instructors, (4) providing a schedule of fees, (5) providing financial statements for their businesses, 6) character and reputation evaluations for operators, 7) providing personal and employment records, and 8) certification issues. Certification is particularly a problem for public school instructors who want to work for commercial driving businesses but they are required to certify for a second time. The Association questions why public schools pay $30.00 for a driver's training permit while commercial driving schools pay $10.00 for the permit.

The Association would like to have its members' credibility and input acknowledged since they are driver education professionals; they want to be regulated by a business friendly agency. It has been suggested to the Association that perhaps the appropriate agency to regulate them would be the Idaho Transportation Department. A copy of Mr. Ryals' testimony is attached to the minutes.

Dwight Dickey, owner of the Sun Valley Driving School, submitted the attached written testimony detailing problems he has experienced. He supports transferring responsibility for private driver education businesses from the Department of Education to the Idaho Transportation Dept.

Jolynne Cavener, Secretary of the Idaho Association of Professional Driving Businesses, has been in the driver education business four years; prior to that she spent over 20 years in the banking business. She said she cannot run her business and meet the market's needs because of some Department of Education rules and regulations. She gave the following examples: homeschoolers who have more flexible schedules than public school students, students who want to finish the program in 30 days during the school year, and classroom specifications that cannot be met because she teaches in a room rented from a senior citizen's center. Another problem for her that was written as a "deficiency" on her first Department of Education evaluation was allowing one student to drive alone in the vehicle (at the parents' request) when she had more than four students in the classroom. Her association has been trying to work with the Department of Education for over two years to get some of the rules changed but, to date, nothing has happened. Association members are losing business because they cannot meet their clients' needs.


Dept. of Education Drivers Ed Program

Driver Education; Idaho Department of Education

Elizabeth (Beth) Weaver, Driver Education Specialist, Idaho Department of Education, provided the committee with information on the driver education program administered by the Department of Education, noted curriculum improvements, discussed program support and then talked about some of the problems.

Idaho's licensing age is 17 unless students complete a driver education course and the Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) law requirements that allow them to drive at age 15. Current course requirements require 30 hours in the classroom, 6 hours of observation in a vehicle, and 6 hours of behind-the-wheel driving over no less than 42 days; however, public schools can offer a 30-day course during the summer. In 2003, 17,500 students completed drivers education; 12,800 or 73% took the course through public schools and 4,700 or 27% took the course through commercial schools. In the public schools it costs an average of $224.00 per student to take driver's ed with the student paying an average of $77.49 and the school districts being reimbursed an average of $106.000 ­ maximum reimbursement is $110. Because costs continue to increase, a bill has been introduced this session to increase the reimbursement to

school districts to $125 per student. Currently there are 417 public school teachers and 66 commercial school teachers who teach drivers education.

In 1999, it was the intent of the Driver Education Steering Committee to have the same teen driver training standards for public and commercial school programs so rule changes were proposed to raise the standards. Some commercial schools opposed the draft rules in 2002 so they currently operate under the 1996 rules. Public schools operate under rules approved by the Legislature in 2003.

Ms. Weaver listed the following problem areas. The State Department of Education (SDE) is charged with licensing driving schools but does not have clear authority to regulate commercial driving schools including the revocation of licenses for those schools that repeatedly and willingly violate Idaho statutes and rules. Further, SDE does not have the resources to bring violators into compliance. Also, there continues to be resistance by commercial schools to adopt uniform teen driver training standards.

Public and commercial driver education programs need to work cooperatively together for the safety of all concerned. The State Department of Education is not opposed to an effort by the commercial driving schools to move the licensing and regulation of commercial driving schools to the Idaho Transportation Department. A copy of Ms. Weaver's presentation is attached to the minutes.

Karen Gustafson, representing the State Board of Education, said the Board would not take a position on the issue of moving regulation of commercial driving schools to the Idaho Transportation Department or leaving regulation with the Department of Education. She acknowledged there are problems with both the statutes and rules. Statutes involve financial statements, character and reputation of the operator, and previous and current personnel records. It is difficult to write a rule unless there is clear direction from a statute. There is currently nothing in statute that gives the Board or the Department of Education the authority to take action if someone does something wrong. On the other hand, it is her impression that the only time the commercial school operators hear from someone is when they have done something wrong. There is a lot of work to be done on this issue. The State Board of Education has taken a position to hold the unpublished negotiated rules to see what direction comes from the Legislature.
Additional Comments from Commercial Driving Schools Dave Eiguren, Vice President of the Idaho Association of Professional Driving Businesses, understood the purpose of this meeting was to explain to the Senate Transportation Committee why, upon advice from some legislators, there should be consideration given to moving regulation of commercial driving schools to the Idaho Transportation Department. The charge for student driving permits should be the same no matter who does the training. Currently the permit costs $30 if training occurs in public schools and $10 for commercial schools. It is the Idaho Transportation Department that determines the driving rules, the regulatory signs, supervision of the written driving test, etc. Driving schools want to be run as a business but feel they are being run as employees of the Department of Education. Another concern is that certified school teachers who teach drivers education must be certified a second time if they want to work for a commercial driving school.

The Association feels that its members do not receive any assistance from the Department of Education in helping to change the statutes. When they have tried to discuss concerns and problems with SDE, the members seem to be ignored. Mr. Eiguren reiterated that it was not his Association's idea to request being moved to the Idaho Transportation Department. The Association wants to get some statutes changed and thinks the direction should be to move commercial driving schools under the regulatory authority of the Idaho Transportation Department.

Discussion on Drivers Education Program

Chairman Ingram suggested that the Committee should also hear from AAA and the insurance companies.

Mo Detmar, Administrator for the Division of Motor Vehicles for the Idaho Transportation Department, indicated there were obvious differences of opinion, but a common thread running through the discussion indicated everyone is concerned about safety. ITD does not have a position at this time but would like to see an effort made to improve the driver education program to improve safety. Mr. Detmar expressed caution about making a move from one regulatory agency to another before the entire matter is thoroughly reviewed. He suggested that a study committee look into the situation before the Legislature convenes next year.

Senator Geddes informed those present that statutes can be changed and people can prevail on committees in the Legislature to help with that effort. Rules review is a public process and rules can be negotiated as well. He encouraged those present to become involved in that process.

Adjourn The meeting adjourned at 3:12 p.m.

DATE: February 10, 2004
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
PLACE: Room 420 (Gold Room)
MEMBERS PRESENT: Chairman Ingram, Vice Chairman Keough, Senators Geddes, Brandt, Little, Bailey, McWilliams, Marley, Calabretta


MINUTES: Senator Keough moved that the minutes of Thursday, February 5, 2004, be accepted as written. The motion was seconded by Senator Bailey and approved by voice vote.
Final Report ITD Weight Distance Conversion Study

Mo Detmar, Administrator of the Division of Motor Vehicles, Idaho Department of Transportation, indicated this final report completes the legislative study comparing the old weight distance/use fee truck registration system with the new registration system created by the repeal of weight distance tax procedures in October, 2001. He reminded the Committee that the weight distance tax was enacted in 1951 and revised periodically until 1981; since that time there were only minor changes until February 22, 2000, when Judge McLaughlin issued his decision based on the American Trucking Association lawsuit. The Court found that Section 49-434-9, Idaho Code, (the weight distance tax) was unfair to out-of-state trucking firms. Weight distance is a tax on commercial or large trucks based on the loaded maximum registered scale weight of the combination of vehicles; i.e., the weight of the truck multiplied by mill rate or cents per mile driven for a given registration period to arrive at the fees due. The weight distance tax (sometimes referred to as use fee tax) was collected after miles were driven as compared to the typical registration fee programs that are paid prior to driving the vehicle.

The settlement negotiations from the decision resulted in a registration system change. As a byproduct of that change, the Legislature requested annual reports concerning the revenue stream to the Highway Distribution Account from the new truck registration system from 2001 through 2004. To manage that reporting, the University of Idaho through the National Institute of Advanced Transportation Technologies (NIATT) was hired as an independent consultant whose charge was to complete a study comparing the old weight distance/use fee system with the new registration-based system and report their final findings to the 2004 Legislature. This report meets that obligation.

The report will (1) analyze and compare Idaho's former and current truck tax system, (2) examine the impacts on intra- and inter-state truck operations, (3) evaluate economic and administrative impacts on affected taxpayers, and (4) provide recommendations. Mr. Detmar introduced Dr. Ken Casavant who will lead the discussion and Dr. Eric Jessup, an assistant professor in the Department of Agriculture and Resource Economics, Washington State University who has specialized in transportation modeling and analytical research.

Dr. Ken Casavant, a transportation economist with the Department of Agriculture and Resource Economics at Washington State University, presented their findings and conclusions. A copy of his powerpoint presentation is attached to the minutes. He thanked Doug Benson with the Idaho Transportation Department for his responsiveness in providing data.

Since background information on the issue was covered by Mr. Detmar, Dr. Casavant discussed revenue impacts from the new truck tax system, focused on Idaho-based firms (changes by vehicle weight categories), compared the old/new systems on taxpayer (trucking firms) cost of operation, and compared the old/new system on dollar per ton mile. He also discussed revenue neutrality, looking at the potential existence of any shortfall but also looked at the pre-payment magnitude that is part of the data collection. He also discussed the enforcement/evasion issue, and possible restructuring of the tax system, as well as the use of temporary trip permits ­ what he sees and how businesses are using that as an avenue to make good economic decisions. Finally recommendations will be offered as suggested by NIATT and the Idaho Legislature.

He discussed revenue generation which indicates from 1999 to 2003, looking at the foreign versus Idaho carriers impact, over time the foreign payments have decreased by $8.2 million and local in-state payments have increased by $3.6 million, so Idaho-based firms are carrying more of the impact than they were earlier which was the mission of the lawsuit. Perhaps some of the reasons the foreign payments have gone down is because quarterly reporting has been allowed in-state, payment by registration, a decrease in truck numbers, and an increase in the use of temporary permits. Why the decrease? The available data, as far as gross domestic product for the state of Idaho, suggests there is a flattening but not a decrease in economic activity. One must look at the distribution ­ look at individual sectors. Those sectors experiencing GDP growth were agriculture, retail trade, real estate, health services, transportation and public utilities while manufacturing, durable goods, industrial equipment, chemicals, and lumber/wood products experienced a GDP decline. Truck-based industries are on both sides of the ledger which would suggest the GDP was fairly stable and a decrease in revenue could be the result of the change in the registration system itself.

Looking specifically at Idaho-based trucks from 1999 to 2003, there was an increase in revenue of over 27% (Idaho calls it revenue, truckers call it payments and user fees). Looking at revenue distribution by vehicle weight category and size of truck, the 80,000 pound vehicles provide the largest source of revenue (a 36.72% increase) followed by vehicles in the 50,000 to 80,000 pound category (29% increase). The number of registered Idaho vehicles has decreased almost 15% from 1999 to 2003. There is an increase in revenue occurring, spread out over fewer trucks. The smallest decrease in Idaho registered trucks was in the large commercial vehicles over 80,000 pounds (7.25%), the largest decrease in registered vehicles (19.98%) was in the 50,000 to 80,000 pound range. As these changes have been occurring, the annual vehicle miles of travel (AVMT) per year has been slowing; in the last four years, the average increase has been slightly less than 1% and for the last 20 years, it has increased about 5%. (AVMT is a rough indicator of the consumption of the infrastructure.) So there has been a continued increase in the use of the road in producing benefits to Idaho, but the increase is slowing over time.

The study also looked at the following economic and administrative impacts of the new system: impacts per ton mile, cost of operation per mile, break-even mileage (old vs. new system), industry impacts, and some administrative impacts for the Idaho Transportation Department. Under the new system, trucks in either the 80,000 or 106,000 permitted GVW categories with high-mileage (120,000 miles) end up with decreases of 37% and 33%, respectively. Trucks in those same GVW categories with low mileage (12,000 miles) have increases of 120% and 135% respectively, in fees being paid by trucks. So those high-mileage vehicles end up with a decrease in break-even costs. In looking at the registration fees as a percent of total cost of operation under the new system, 80,000 GVW, low-mileage vehicles (12,000 miles) experienced an increased change of 139% while high-mileage vehicles in the same category had a decreased change of 41%. The 106,000 GVW low-mileage vehicles (12,000 miles) experienced a 151% change (increase), while the high-mileage (120,000 miles) had a decreased change of 50% as a percent to total cost of operation. The new system allows a decrease in registration fees as far as a percent of total cost of operation which makes sense because registration fees have been designed as fixed and if a person "runs the heck out of a truck," he is going to lower the impact of the registration fee on the truck itself. When looking at registration fees and gas tax combined, doing the same analysis, the direction of change is the same but is significantly less of an impact. So the lower mileage fees have a positive impact as far as the cost of operation increasing, but the high mileage fees are about a breakeven (the analysis says it is a -1%). The result when combining the gas tax and the registration tax, there is little or no impact on the high-mileage firms but an increase, but a lot smaller, on the low-mileage firms.

Regarding registration tax costs per mile, analyses of what the differences are by mileage, under the old and new systems, showed the break-even point at 75,000 miles per year. Under the old system, it cost 4.49 cents per mile and under the new system it costs 4.50 cents per mile. However, if the mileage is 12,000 miles per year it could add up to a 104% increase; or if the mileage is 120,000 per year, there would be a decrease of 38%. Another characteristic (problem) with the existing system which could be an incentive for under-reporting can be explained by the following example: at 7,500 miles, the cost (rate per mile) figures out to be 6.4 cents. At the start of the next tier (7,501 miles), the rate jumps to 14.7 cents per mile, so there is a lot of incentive not to report that extra mile or two. At 50,000 miles the cost is 4.6 cents and at 50,001, the cost jumps to 6.7 cents per mile. These are challenges with tiered registration systems that have large jumps from tier to tier. (The same situation occurs in many other states.)

To summarize the economic impacts: (1) high-mileage firms gain as a result of the new system because they experience decreases in costs, on both ton-mile and total cost of operation basis. (2) when considering the gas tax, increases are significantly less for low-mileage firms, and decreases are smaller for high-mileage firms. (3) Firms above 75,000 annual miles gain under the new system and those under that mileage feel an impact in the increased cost per mile. (4) A University of Idaho pilot study on grains showed that little or no modal shifts would occur as a result of being shifted between rail/truck or truck/barge as a result of increases. Relative to the rest of the world, the Idaho grain industry did not lose competitiveness, so there was no shifting competitiveness between modes. As far as economic impacts, that particular study indicated that competitiveness has not been drastically affected.

Those involved in the study spent a considerable amount of time looking at revenue neutrality. In looking at the record and talking to those involved, revenue neutrality became an accepted goal of participants in the settlement; it was negotiated at the $41.3 million level - that was revenue neutral relative to the prior versus the new system. The April, 2000, settlement stated, "The $41.3 million equals the approximate amount of use fee revenue anticipated to be collected by the State in Fiscal Year 2001." The $41.3 million figure has become an operative value and a goal and analysis has been done toward that.

Regarding the revenue analysis itself, a table was displayed to indicate what the revenue neutral category would be in the years 2001, 2002, and 2003 and is identified as $41.3 million each year. The actual revenue realized in that time was $64.5 million for 2001, $46.3 million for 2002, and $38.8 million for 2003. Looking at revenue neutral as far as a shortfall, in 2001 there was $23.2 million above the revenue neutral, $5.0 million in 2002, and in 2003 when the weight distance was taken out there is a $2.5 million shortfall relative to the $41.3 million. To date, there is only one year's data, there is some indication the shortfall does exist in 2003. But as economists, Drs. Casavant and Jessup, looked at the $41.3 million and, assuming that amount was balanced relative to cost of operating the infrastructure, cost of rebuilding, etc., the figure is at least close to the CPI. They have some construction indices rather than the CPI that might be more relevant to this analysis that is being accumulated right now. Looking at the CPI growth over those years, by the year 2003 that $38.8 million becomes $42.9. It might be reasonable, based on the fact that in 1997, $41.3 million was realized. Dr. Casavant feels that is a conservative estimate at this time. The net result of that is when one looks at revenue neutrality with a CPI, there is a prepayment amount of $23.4 million that is above the existing, but in the year of 2003, there is a revenue shortfall of $4.1 million identified.

In summarizing the revenue issue: (1) the policy change of collecting at the beginning of the year versus the end of the year did have an impact. When truckers were put in the same position as automobiles and other vehicles (pay at time of registration), it did have an impact on revenue. (2) the existing data does not allow for a definitive answer at this time. There has only been one year (2003) ­ where he thinks the noise of change has been cleared up and that suggests that there may be a revenue shortfall but it is a one-year sample. No economist nor academic would say that becomes the answer - but it is an indication.

(3) Based on that, it appears that a $2.5 - $4.1 shortfall below revenue neutrality may be occurring.

Dr. Casavant discussed some other related issues of importance to the state of Idaho, truckers and policymakers. (1) Regarding enforcement and evasion implications, there are incentives to under-report now, but there were incentives to under-report previously. But previously, it was based on mileage that had occurred rather than projecting into the future what might happen. There is a slight weakness associated with that. There is the possibility that the degree of enforcement has declined because they investigated the number of personnel administratively auditing this and that has decreased over time - a very cost-effective move. Out-of-staters are no longer audited. That suggests the control or amount of knowledge known is probably less than before. It is not known if those reporting are declaring all of their mileage, but it is known that out-of-staters are no longer audited and Idaho is concentrating on Idaho-based firms. Administrative expenses have decreased for ITD - that is a good thing as long as it is known what it costs in foregone revenue.

(2) There was an increase in temporary trip permits between 2002 and 2003 or a 20% increase. But both of those years are significantly down from the previous year of 2001. The data would indicate that truckers for a couple of years were trying to figure out what was happening -- they were trying to figure out what should they pay in the future, where should they license their vehicles, if they had a fleet of five vehicles should they only license four now and hold the fifth one back or should they use temporary trip permits to meet the demands of the market. The good news about this is that businesses are making rational economic decisions. From the point of agriculture and forest products where there is high seasonality, these folks may be responding to market demand. They are there to provide a service but they are going to keep that truck from being registered all the time. That is the implication and it may suggest why truck registrations are down. The numbers are not definite but it is a logical deduction. (3) Another related issue is potential restructuring. The data being collected are incomplete because they are captured, in most cases, by category rather than the actual experience of the firm. The trucker knows why he puts the truck in a particular category but collection of that data is incomplete at this time so economists cannot be precise in the analysis. The International Registration Plan (IRP) Agreement favors firms with high mileage out of state. If truckers travel 120,000 miles nationally, they get to pay at the high-mileage rate, which is low per mile even though they only travel 10,000 miles in the state. So a local trucker traveling 10,000 miles in the state pays a lot more than that IRP vehicle that travels the same amount of miles but gets to register at the 120,000 rate. Dr. Casavant also offered the point that there is some administrative savings from the fact that every state takes care of itself so there may be some administrative savings to the state of Idaho and other states that might make it worthwhile. It is not yet known but it is a potential issue. Another related issue is that low-mileage firms do absorb significant impact - that has implications for registration, evasion and for temporary permits. That will be determined over time. The last potential restructuring issue is that the current fee structure does not incorporate accepted highway impact/damage functions. The fee does not specifically include the differing impacts when there are things like a fat truck versus a skinny truck (a heavily loaded vehicle versus a lightly loaded vehicle). He discussed a chart that shows that as the weight of the vehicle is increased the damage or consumption to the road increases exponentially. The large vehicle has a different stress factor, different impact, and some would say, a different economic impact on the state. The existing system is not responsive and does not reflect some of that.

Dr. Casavant concluded with the following recommendations.

(1) Regarding data collected, they would like to see actual experiences collected if at all possible. When audits are done, the odometers are checked, the information is recorded, but the information is never brought together where all can see specifically what is happening. He encouraged those in charge to look at foreign versus Idaho IRPs and versus the Idaho Full Fee. The little bit of analysis offered here is from a sample done by the ITD. That information needs to be made available to policymakers and to ITD as implementors of the policy.

2) Some concerns about enforcement and evasion were identified. It is not enough to say that "we need to enforce more" or "they are evading a lot." He suggested that costs and benefits be looked at at different enforcement levels. Is revenue being lost? Are costs for truckers being increased as the enforcement level increases? There should be some understanding of that relationship.

3) Regarding a revenue-neutrality oriented system restructuring, there is no question that an existing fee is more efficient from an economist's point of view than a flat fee. A flat fee is like a smorgasbord versus individual pricing. When one pays per item, the costs and benefits of every item are considered. A weight distance tax offers that ability and a flat fee does not.

4) The question of equity as far as individual low-mileage vs. high-mileage firms, there is an incentive for evasion.

5) Regarding impact on pavements, the study has identified a divergence between what appears to be the consumption or impact on the highway

versus the existing registration system. Higher weight vehicles are not, evidentally, bearing the brunt that they lay on the pavement itself. That is something that legislatively needs to be handled.

6) Regarding administrative impacts, instead of seeing enforcement versus equity considerations, it would be easy to look at what the benefits of increased administration/data collection/enforcement might be relative

to revenue and equity considerations between high-mileage and low-mileage, high weight and low weight vehicles.

7) The temporary permit could be a good economic tool available to truckers as they try to provide the service that Idaho industries need. It could be incorporated into Idaho's structure as it is, but right now those doing this study are not sure what the use impacts are and are not sure what the revenue impacts might be. There is currently only that little bit of data as far as it was used a lot earlier which decreased significantly in 2002 and then increased by 20% in 2003. Truckers and motor vehicle operators are learning how to work with the system in responding to their customers' needs. The role of temporary permits may have implications for revenue generation and also for service to the industries.

8) It would be beneficial for Idaho to undertake a comprehensive evaluation, to do an equity comparison to surrounding states fee structure as to structure, implementation and impact on competition. Idaho should know what the competition is for the truckers in other states, and what the competition is among the sectors whether it is grain, livestock, or forest products. Other states are competitors and it would make sense to take a good look at Idaho's system and see how it relates to the other systems, both learning from theirs and seeing if a competitive imbalance is being created. Indications are that is not the case, but Idaho needs to know what the surrounding states are doing.

Questions directed to Dr. Casavant

Q: Senator Keough asked what Dr. Casavant's involvement in the ATA lawsuit was.

A: He was an expert witness for the American Trucking Association.

Q: Who was contacted or did you just use ITD audits for your analysis or did you contact trucking firms?

A: We used the audits and we used information provided by Doug Benson (ITD).

Q: (Page 12 graph on decrease in truck numbers) part of that you covered could potentially be happening in people managing their fleets with temporary permits and not registering under the normal system, but I suspect, and maybe you would know, if some of that was lost to economic factors. Can you balance the shortfall in revenues produced against the loss of trucking companies. Do you do that type of analysis at all?

A: We can do that. The total amount paid by the Idaho-based trucker increased. We don't have it here, so that increased, even though the number of trucks was decreasing. That would suggest that the revenue per remaining truck was increasing over time.

Q: Page 12 graph - those are all negative numbers - what does that mean?

A: There are still trucks in those categories but this graph was designed to show, given the decrease in total that occurred, where it occurred. It suggests that there was a decrease of 7% in the large ones, almost 20% in the second category. So that graph is designed to say that of the decrease in vehicle numbers, this is where it occurred.

Q: The concept of revenue neutrality - that was a snapshot at one point in time that was a negotiated settlement. Does it make sense in your mind to continue striving for revenue neutrality when we no longer have that system? We have a new system. Are we to continue as a policy body to look at that point in time, and carry that forward as some measurement as how we should structure our system. Or should we say that happened then and here we are today, and move forward?

A: We accepted that as a given. That was a revenue neutrality figure and we did some analysis relative to that. Over time at least the CPI is an appropriate way to indicate either the cost of new construction (we are still trying to find some construction) so that the concept can hold. That is a policy decision but the number chosen should probably be sensitive over time to cost of construction and vehicle miles traveled. One is consumption of the road and the other is cost of rebuilding the road. These two together, when one looked at the average vehicle miles traveled, was close to 1% when we did calculate it and it didn't show any change. In the future, if the annual vehicle miles continues to increase, that reflects use of the roads. Increasing it by the CPI or a construction index indicates what revenue needs to be to attain the same service to those who need the infrastructure. So I would say at least those two would be appropriate to consider.

Q: Senator Little asked Dr. Casavant if he were to diagnose the future, what the safety regulations would do to the average miles traveled? Will there be enough drivers? There have been quite a few protests that this is going to have a significant impact. Have you analyzed where you think that's going to be?

A: There haven't been definitive studies done yet, but there is no question that hours of operation are going to affect the costs for the labor component of that truck. If the truck is on a trip and has to sit, then the truck cannot achieve the same mileage that it had before. So it is expected that both labor cost and annual mileage achieved will decrease over time. So what does that do? It is going to raise the cost.

Q: And lower the average miles traveled? I'm confused about actual miles traveled. If you used audits, don't the audits have the actual miles traveled? What's the problem with "trueing up" those numbers?

A: We did not get involved in the actual audit numbers from last year. What we had was the reporting as far as revenue and the annual mileage. The exact audit data was not part of this.

Q: If you had that, couldn't you check out the hypothesis? Maybe there wasn't a hypothesis - that they were under reporting mileage.

A: It is a hypothesis. If we had those, the answer is yes. We did not present it today, but the number of citations has slightly increased. We have such a short window of information that I can't say that is a definitive statement that they are under reporting and then getting caught. But we do know that with the number of audits --every 3 to 5 years someone might get audited--there might be information to go in there and really test that. That is a good point, something we have not done.

Q: Regarding the reduction in registration in small trucks, I know for a fact when we repealed the personal property tax on farm equipment, some of that equipment was licensed. Licensing was cheaper than the personal property tax in some counties. With the repeal of personal tax some of those registrations went away and therefore those vehicles disappeared even though they are still out there. I wondered on that end of the scale, on the 18,000 pound and lighter trucks, if that wasn't part of that falloff because that would have been within the window of your study.

A: It easily could have been. It is not something we looked into or had the information for. But I'll agree.

Questions directed to Mo Detmar from ITD

Q/A: Mr. Detmar wanted to answer a question posed in JFAC a few days ago by Senator Calabretta who asked what the current revenue looked like for FY04. Understand we only have 6 months in, but it appears by projections, we will come in at about $39.2 million. Again, that is projecting 6 months with 6 months actual.

Q: Senator Little asked what that means to those not sitting on the JFAC? Above? Below?

A: FY03 was $38.8 million, so $39.2 further substantiates that we do have a flattening of the system; in other words, we are getting a stronger picture of what this system will deliver.

Q: Senator Ingram asked if the actual number of trucks in Idaho has declined? Have we gained or lost truck drivers in Idaho? What is it going to cost our shippers in Idaho? Are we going to be able to compete, like shipping to the coast, or are we going to be beat out again by the people in Oregon, Canada, and other places servicing the same markets we do? It is one thing to be closest to the market but if we can't service them because of pricing that is a problem. Are we getting into that area, or where are we?

A: We have certainly seen lesser Idaho-based trucks in Idaho. So we have less trucks, less Idaho trucks, running on our roads today. That is an absolute. This report shows that and our information shows that. The amount of drivers, I have no clue about that. I certainly can tell you our commercial drivers licensing program is not decreasing. Maybe one of these gentlemen could handle the question better than I. A program was created that I was involved with to give some options or opportunities for the trucker to make a valid budget business decision on why he would register 5 trucks even though he owns six. It gives people an opportunity to manage their fleets. There are some opportunities there for someone to decide what to do when he runs against one of the schedules. He can decide when he is about to hit 20,000 miles if he wants to continue running longer and go to the 25,000 tier where the rate or per mile cost of operating that truck goes up. Or he can decide to let one vehicle sit and buy another truck, or maybe bring that one vehicle on the fleet that he had not used. So there is an opportunity to manage the fleet.

Q: The reason I am asking that question is because there is the combination of fixed and variable costs involved. When you take the fixed costs and allocate them across a number of miles, it is one thing, and then you add the variable costs of fuel taxes and other expenses. I am wondering if we are forcing some of our people who traditionally run trucks into an operating ratio where they are losing money and it is cheaper to take a carrier like Snyders to put their products on because Snyders is willing to bid theirs for anything covering variable costs so they can get their trucks back home. I don't think our truckers are second rate to anybody, but I'm worried about the fact that if we're losing trucks, they may get rid of the ones that have market value to us and leave us with an older fleet that needs more care and attention. We would be forced out of the market and if we don't have adequate transportation we are not going to have economic developments we are hoping for to get our products to market. What are your thoughts on that?

Dr. Casavant answered the question.

A: Mr. Chairman, I think you put your finger on something that we don't know the answer to yet. A lot of the restructuring is not just here, but in the U.S. whether it is hours of operation or something else. Remember the double nickel - there was an increase in labor costs because the trucker was not able to get the mileage and productivity out of the vehicle because there were a lot of unintended consequences. I don't know if Snyder and others will ever be able to compete with the personal service and responsiveness of the Idaho-based trucker. But I do know that it could make it more difficult for the Idaho-based trucker to compete against those other carriers. I cannot suggest what the outcome will be; but there is going to be a tightness as you suggest.

Q: Senator Calabretta asked to what degree the general driver subsidizes the damage the trucks do to the highway for that economic benefit.

A: Idaho has done cost responsibility studies over the years and I think the general finding was that revenues from trucks quite closely approximate the cost of providing for highways. There was some divergence between the sizes of trucking and who was paying what. He will make that information available.

Question answered by Mo Detmar, ITD.

Q: Senator Keough asked Mr. Detmar to clarify his statement about this being the final report. This final report talked about the degree of enforcement having declined and that we are not auditing our state firms. Could you address those elements.

A: In reference to final report, this is one of three reports the Legislature asked us to do at the end of the weight distance and going into a new system. In other words some folks were nervous about what it would do and how it would impact, etc. So we made a report the first year, and last year you may recall, we had some difficulty with it, and truly did not make an official report, and this being the third year or 2004 when the report is due. That is why I am suggesting it is the final report, at least on that project and that window of time that we are asked to report. Some comments on the audit scenario and the issue of enforcement changes. You have heard me talk about downsizing and the transfer of our motor carrier audits from ITD to the State Tax Commission. It is true that we have less auditors now. I would suggest that there may be a few less audits done because of this, but I would suggest there is a great deal of efficiency being gained.

I think it is pertinent you know how collections were going with our auditors. For many years on weight distance, we were retrieving in the neighborhood $3 to $1 in weight distance and it continued to drop to less than $1 with the new system. In other words, we were not returning the money which brought the suggestion that we might spend less money, chasing less money. You can't give up your audit program because you have to have a presence to maintain some level of comfort. So we did downsize.

The fact that we don' t audit out of state is absolutely true. It is only true to the fact that Idaho employees or auditors do not go out of state to audit. Those trucks are being audited by the base state jurisdiction much as our auditors here are doing audits for other states. You might think that I would be more interested in collecting Idaho dollars, but we have a strong allegiance across the country to do these things to keep things in balance. So I think it is fair to stay that we are still doing a reasonably good job of auditing.

Q: Senator Ingram related that when he was working at Boise Cascade, the company had about 400 trucks in several different types of fleets (private carrier, corporate ownership and also contracted with contract carriers). In BCC's private fleet there were 7 or 8 combinations of trucks (that would run in Idaho only, another group in north Idaho that would run in Idaho and Washington, and another in Washington, Oregon and Idaho), different combinations and mileage that we prorated out to keep track of all this information and to minimize the expenses being paid. We utilized the trucks to the best of our ability so we could compete with the legitimate common carriers that were in those areas. Are we still facing this with a lot of our motor carriers now? Are they still struggling to do this? Are they block buying these things? Are we seeing these trucks leaving our state and registering in other states? Do you know what is happening that might cause some of these changes?

A: Your question is, could BCC or other companies still operate with several different looking fleets. Yes they do. You build your trucking base by fleets, by groups of like vehicles that are running in like jurisdictions. Yes they can still do that. Are we losing trucks because of that? I am not sure. We see that we are down in trucks.

Adjourn The Chairman thanked Drs. Casavant and Jessup for presenting the report's findings and recommendations. The meeting adjourned at

2:50 p.m.

DATE: February 12, 2004
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
PLACE: Room 426
MEMBERS PRESENT: Senators Present: Chairman Ingram, Vice Chairman Keough, Senators Geddes, Brandt, Little, Bailey, McWilliams, Marley, Calabretta

Representatives Present: Chair Wood, Vice Chair Ridinger, Representatives Kellogg, McKague, Smith, Roberts, Bauer, Cannon, Skippen, Wills, Shepherd, Douglas



Representatives Bedke and Cuddy
Chairman Ingram conducted the Joint Meeting. He turned the gavel to House Chairman Wood to complete House business; when completed, she returned the gavel to Chairman Ingram.
RS 13693 ITD; Provide Evaluation Form to Contractors & Govt Entities

Senator Brandt, the sponsor of RS 13693, requested that the proposed legislation be returned to him.

RS 14021 Senate Jt. Memorial; Preserve Backcountry Airstrips

Senator Bailey introduced RS 14021 requesting Congress to introduce legislation to preserve access to and the historic use of backcountry airstrips on currently-owned federal lands and any future federal acquisition of lands. The Forest Service has taken management action that renders four backcountry airstrips unserviceable and closes another airstrip. The State of Idaho has appealed the management action.

Motion Senator Calabretta moved that RS 14021 be introduced for print. The motion was seconded by Senator Brandt and approved by voice vote.
RS 14009 Establish the Idaho School Transportation Safety License Plate

Senator Ingram explained that RS 14009 would establish the Idaho School Transportation Safety Awareness License Plate Program and create the Pupil Transportation Support Program.

Motion Senator Calabretta moved, and Senator Marley seconded a motion to print RS 14009. The motion carried by voice vote.
FINAL REPORT Idaho Task Force on Public Transportation

Roy Eiguren, an attorney with Givens Pursley who represents ValleyRide on public transportation issues, said this final report is the most comprehensive report ever completed on public transportation in Idaho. Public transportation is a statewide issue ­ rural and urban. The purpose of this meeting is to present the final report, engage in a dialogue relative to the public transportation system in Idaho, and recommend options for consideration. Public transportation will play a more significant role in the future because of increased congestion on roadways, the need for more efficient use of energy and demands on extending the useful life of roadways. It is essential to provide transportation to a growing number of Idaho citizens who are unable to operate motor vehicles and will become public transportation dependent. Six metropolitan areas in Idaho were designated urbanized making them eligible for urban federal transit funds.

In the summer of 2003 a steering committee put together the task force known as the Idaho Task Force on Public Transportation which included the following organizations: Association of Idaho Cities, the Idaho Association of Chambers of Commerce, the Kootenai Metropolitan Planning Association, the Idaho Association of Counties, the Idaho Association of Highway Districts, transportation providers and regional transportation agencies. The Task Force members are Chairman Lee Staker, Roger Chase, Ron Binggeli, Teri Sackman, Tom LaPointe, Rich Petersen, Rick Yzaguirre, Glenn Miles, Stuart Davis, Bob Flowers, Terry Crawford, Charles Rountree, Jim Brooks, and Joe Herring and Steve Purvis. The Interagency Working Group on Public Transportation (IWG) is a collaborator with the Task Force, providing input and advice.

The Task Force was charged with 1) documenting private and public funds (federal, state, and local) spent on public transportation in Idaho, 2) documenting an inventory of existing public transportation services,

3) identifying transportation links (park and ride, rail, transit, commuter services, air), and overlapping and duplicated services, 4) determining options for coordination, and 5) recommending legislative changes as well as identifying funding sources.

General Jim Brooks, a member of the Task Force who is also Vice Chairman of the Public Transportation Advisory Council of the Idaho Transportation Board, discussed the state of public transportation in Idaho. The purpose of the Advisory Council he sits on is to advise the Idaho Transportation Department on any issues of public transportation, mainly policy and management. Idaho does not have a public transportation system and further, the state does not regulate those who do provide transportation services. At this time, public transportation in Idaho is provided locally. Local entities can choose to be involved but the biggest obstacle they have is obtaining funding for public transportation.
Roy Eiguren said Idaho has a variety of ways to provide public transportation but there is a problem with lack of funding. Idaho is one of seven states that receives no state funds for public transportation. Enabling legislation that allowed for the creation of regional transportation agencies did not include a funding mechanism. Since 1991 there have been three separate efforts to secure state or local funding sources for public transportation. There are approximately 56 general public transportation providers: 10 public, 34 private for-profit, and 12 private non-profit. There are also 48 providers that offer transportation services for seniors. The variety of transportation systems include fixed line, demand response, Medicaid, intercity, carpools and vanpools.

Idaho transit agencies are funded mainly by federal dollars and local matching money from individual governments. There are six sources for public transportation funding in Idaho: the Federal Transit Administration, Medicaid, Idaho Department of Transportation, Idaho Department of Education, local funds, and others (Health and Welfare, Head Start, Vocational Rehabilitation, and Department of Labor). In 2002, the total contributions amounted to $91,876,046.

Kelli Fairless, the Director of ValleyRide, said not only is the state diverse but ValleyRides' service area which includes Ada and Canyon counties is also diverse. Over the past several years ValleyRide has engaged the public in a variety of public outreach settings including: government leaders, business community, citizens, and consumers. They have held interviews, focus groups, public meetings, hearings, and surveys. Through these efforts they have touched thousands of Ada and Canyon citizens. The public 1) would like to see enhanced services,

2) are concerned about air quality and congestion, and access to services by seniors and persons with disabilities, 3) would like to see better marketing and public education, and for ValleyRide to build on successes like good vanpool programs and the park-and-ride program. ValleyRide's strategic priorities are to promote services though education, build community partnerships, enhance existing services and maximize existing resources, secure stable funding, and develop a rail strategy.

Ron Binggeli, the Public Transit Director for the City of Pocatello, said their public transportation system started in the 1970's and came under the city's direction in 1982. There is increasing demand for public transportation so they need local options in order to reduce demand on the city's general fund. Their organizational structure is through inter-government agreements. Their service area includes Bannock, Bingham, Franklin, Power and Caribou counties. They are currently involved in an IAG 4-county coordination pilot program in Highway District 5. They have annual boardings of about 500,000. Their funding sources are the Federal Transit Administration, Medicaid, and the city of Pocatello. Medicaid is currently the only means they have for local matching funds. In the last few years, their door-to-door service for people with disabilities has increased faster than their fixed-route service. They have over 400 people who are certified with transportation disabilities and those services must be provided with very little flexibility. They would like to provide services to those in outlying areas but are limited because of funding.

Terry Crawford, the Transit Manager for Ketchum-Sun Valley, briefly discussed public transportation in Blaine County. He represents the Ketchum-Sun Valley Transit Authority which was the first regional transit authority in Idaho. They do have a funding source, own 10 buses, and a maintenance facility with 4 housing units. From their local option tax they collect over $1,000,000 annually ($400,000 coming from Ketchum and $300,000 from Sun Valley). They operate their transit system 7 days a week. They need to service the south valley area but their charter limits them to operate only in Ketchum and Sun Valley.

Roy Eiguren said there is a large and unmet need for public transportation throughout various parts of Idaho both urban and rural. The status of Idaho statutes is that the jurisdiction with the authority to provide public transportation services lacks the authority to fund those services. Idaho needs to provide a mechanism for funding at the local level. There also needs to be action at the federal level to change funding terms and conditions. In addition the Task Force would like Medicaid to change its terms and conditions of funding and the amount of funding. They would like to have an interim legislative committee analyze this report.

The Task Force considered 10 funding options to provide local (city, county and regional) funding for public transportation. After extensive debate within the Task Force as well as at a series of regional meetings held throughout the state, the Task Force concluded that the two most appropriate options to recommend to the Legislature were the personal property tax on vehicles and the title transfer fee. Those options should not be implemented without a local option vote of affected citizens.

Joe Herring, Executive Director, Region IV Development Agency, discussed the situation in the Twin Falls area. Because of plant closings, the Burley area is experiencing high unemployment but in the Twin Falls area there are job openings. His agency's challenge is to provide public transportation so people from Burley can take advantage of employment opportunities in the Twin Falls and Jerome areas.

Roy Eiguren, said the report is a complete comprehensive analysis of the needs of the state. Idaho is unique because of its geography and population. Public transportation needs in Idaho are not being met because of a lack of funding at the local level.

Steve Purvis, representing the city of Boise, said he has a rapidly growing area. Boise works closely with ValleyRide who relies on money from the city to operate. They would like to expand services to meet increasing needs. Boise also needs more ability to deal with some of the issues facing them; they need help economically and with air quality issues. He encouraged the Committee to support legislation that would allow them taxing options subject to voter approval.

The meeting adjourned at 2:45 p.m.

DATE: February 17, 2004
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
PLACE: Room 426
MEMBERS PRESENT: Chairman Ingram, Vice Chairman Keough, Senators Geddes, Little, Bailey, Marley,


Senators Brandt, McWilliams and Calabretta
MINUTES: Senator Bailey moved that the minutes of Tuesday, February 10, and Thursday, 12, 2004, be accepted as written. The motion was seconded by Senator Marley and approved by voice vote.
S 1272 Railroad Crossings on Highways; Repeal Section 62-307, I.C.
Unanimous Consent Request On request of Chairman Ingram, granted by unanimous consent,

S 1272 was returned to the sponsor, Senator Pearce.

S 1273 Motor Vehicle Law and Neighborhood Electric Vehicles (NEV)

Denise Brennan, Executive Director, Idaho Automobile Dealers Association, explained that S 1273 would allow Neighborhood Electric Vehicles (NEV's) to be licensed and titled for operation on streets where the posted speed limit is 35 miles per hour or less. A person operating a low-speed vehicle must have a valid driver's license. By definition a "low-speed" vehicle is any four-wheeled electric vehicle with speeds between 20 and 25 miles per hour and complies with the federal safety standards established in 49 C.F.R. 571.500. Where applicable, low-speed vehicles will be recognized as "alternative fueled vehicles, electric vehicles, or zero emission vehicles." There is only one NEV dealer franchise within the state located in Coeur d'Alene.

Motion Senator Bailey moved that S 1273 be sent to the floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Marley. By voice vote, the motion passed; Senator Keough was recorded as voting "no."
Report on Committees

Charlie Rountree, the Administrator for the Division of Transportation Planning, Idaho Transportation Department, presented information on the following ten groups that the Idaho Transportation Department interacts with.
The Enhancement Advisory Committee was established by Idaho Transportation Board policy as a result of federal law. Its purpose is to advise the Transportation Board on a group of enhancement projects that fall into twelve eligible project areas related to surface transportation, such as bicycle and pedestrian, preservation, information about historic scenic transportation areas, beautification of transportation corridors, etc. Each year there is statewide solicitation and application for related projects funded between $3.5 and $4.5 million. The project applications are from local entities. The Committee reviews the applications and makes recommendations to the Transportation Board. Examples are the Visitors Centers at Montpelier and Glenns Ferry.
The Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program (CMAQ) was established by Idaho Transportation Board policy as a result of federal transportation law. Members represent interested parties and those with expertise to balance local, regional and statewide priorities. Applications are solicited annually, based on certain criteria. CMAQ sends its recommendations to the Idaho Transportation Board. There is some discretion on how funds are spent as long as the projects improve air quality. Examples of projects are surfacing of unpaved roads, dust abatement, etc.
The Scenic Byway Advisory Committee has 16 members from across the state. The Committee works with local entities who want to establish scenic or historic byways. The committee helps each entity establish an initial concept that is presented to the Idaho Transportation Board. Once accepted in the scenic byway corridor program, they are eligible for federal funds. In the last few years, Congress has earmarked the funds; ldaho's share totaled about $1 million last year (80% federal funds, 20% local match). Currently, Idaho has 25 scenic byways.
U. S. Fish & Wildlife, National Oceanic & Atmospheric Service (NOA) and Corps of Engineers

These three entities have reduced their level of service to Idaho. The state cannot wait several years for those organizations to respond on consultation and coordination of projects. TEA-21 did allow federal transportation dollars to be used for salaries to pay federal agencies for support staff. The Idaho Transportation Board reluctantly agreed to do that in order to expedite project development. Through those federal funds, Idaho pays for one staff member for each of the three agencies listed above. That amount totals approximately $400,000 per year and includes salary, benefits, traveling and other expenses, training of the staff person as well as the cost of that person training ITD staff, etc. Those three designated staff people work within specific requirements. Idaho's involvement with NOA occurs because NOA is responsible for all fish listed on the federal endangered species list for Idaho (like the salmon). When asked how much money is currently on hold pending a decision by one of these three agencies, Mr. Rountree was not sure but knew about three years ago it amounted to about $40-$50 million for all agencies for all projects. There are a number of projects on hold for various environmental issues (historic, cultural, social, water, etc.) not just for these three agencies. Mr. Rountree indicated he would provide the Committee with the most recent information available.

The Rail Advisory Committee was established in the early 1990's for railroad rehabilitation projects when there were funds available for those projects. Since 1995 the Rail Advisory group has not functioned.

The T-2 Center Advisory Committee was created after the highway needs study was completed and the Local Highway Needs Assessment Council (LHNAC) was dissolved. The current committee was appointed by the past ITD director based on recommendations from various local entities (cities, counties and highway districts). The members help guide and direct the policies and activities of the Idaho T2 Center which is housed in the University of Idaho and the National Institute of Advanced Transportation Technology (NIATT). Its primary function is transferring the latest research and educational information to local communities so they can become more efficient in their delivery of transportation projects and products. It is federally funded with local a match; funds total about $280,000 annually.
The Golden Thread Workshop was the initial group who worked on ITD's visioning process in the last 14-16 months. The group's purpose was to help identify the principals, values and structure that should be incorporated in the visioning process. The group is no longer active.
The Idaho Transportation Resources Task Force (ITRTF) was formed in late 2001 with representatives from ITD, the Local Highway Technical Assistance Council (LHTAC), Association of Idaho Cities (AIC), Idaho Association of Counties (IAC) and the Idaho Association of Highway Districts (IAHD). The purpose of the Task Force was to research the various issues involved in providing and maintaining an effective transportation system for Idaho. The Task Force evaluated ways to utilize current transportation revenues more efficiently and also considered new and innovative options to expand Idaho's ability to finance transportation needs. The group evaluated about 40 options and then ranked all of the options based on six criteria: revenue-raising ability, efficiency, administrative ease, fairness, simplicity, and public acceptance. The options were presented and discussed with local officials and industry representatives at eight workshops conducted around the state. The final report with conclusions was provided to Senate Transportation Committee members in March of 2003. Since that time the Task Force has not been active but could easily be restarted should needs be identified. Two pieces of proposed legislation influenced by this report were the title fee increase and the local option tax.

When asked, Mr. Rountree indicated the T-2 Center (rather than ITRTF) has undertaken the study of asset management looking primarily at the local system; LHTAC is also involved in the asset management issue. He thinks ITRTF's future involvement might be directed by what happens with the federal reauthorization bill. The Idaho Transportation Department continues to meet at least on a quarterly basis with the organizations involved in the Task Force.

Presentation Local Highway Technical Assistance Council (LHTAC)

Joe Haynes, Administrator for the Local Highway Technical Assistance Council, summarized that LHTAC was created by the Legislature in 1994 to assist local highway jurisdictions with utilizing available resources for maintenance and construction of Idaho's local highway system in an efficient and effective manner. The Council's members are local elected officials from throughout Idaho, three members each from cities, counties, and highway districts. He reviewed three (of several) things the Council has the authority to do: 1) develop uniform standards and procedures that can be recommended to member jurisdictions, 2) make recommendations to the Idaho Transportation Board for the distribution and prioritization of federal funds for local highway projects, and 3) assist the Legislature by providing research and data relating to transportation matters affecting local highway jurisdictions within Idaho. He discussed some reports the Council has submitted to the Legislature and pointed out some publications and manuals they have written. He also discussed some of the programs LHTAC provides project selection and administration for: the Local Federal-aid Incentive Program/STP Urban and Rural, Local Rural Highway Investment Program, Local Federal-aid Bridge Program and the Asset Management Project. Regarding asset management, he said they are using software developed by the Utah T-2 Center. The T-2 Center in Idaho is helping collect data and manipulation of that data will be done by LHTAC.

There are now 33,000 miles of local roads in Idaho and 288 local highway jurisdictions. His office has a good working relationship with federal and state government agencies as well as tribal governments and the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

Byron Keely, M.P.A., Deputy Administrator for LHTAC, gave an overview of the local highway system, discussed funding and the use of that funding, and challenges facing LHTAC. Then, per Chairman Ingram's request, he briefly discussed the needs assessment process.

The local highway system is made up of roads, bridges, and railroad crossings. Of the 33,250 miles of local highway miles, 5,366 are eligible for federal aid. The local system is adding about 200-300 miles per year. As of 2003 there were 2,283 bridges and 1,275 railroad crossings in local highway jurisdictions.

Regarding local highway jurisdiction funding, of all the money the locals have on hand at any one time, about 30% is carried forward into the next year and is primarily obligated for maintenance and capital improvement projects. Cost responsibility indicates how local highway jurisdictions are doing in funding their highway system. In Idaho user fees (registration and fuel tax) amount to 49.9% (The typical model indicates about 70% should come from user fees.) Idaho non-user fees amount to 50.1%. This means local highway jurisdictions are underfunded with user fees. Regarding expenditures for local highway jurisdictions, 9.5% was spent on administration, 42.9% of revenues was spent on construction and rehabilitation, and 46.8% was spent on maintenance. The local highway jurisdictions spent 99.2% of their revenue.

Future challenges include preserving the system, upgrading for safety and performance, and training local elected officials and their 1,900 employees.

At the Chairman's request, Mr. Keely discussed the needs assessment process. He reminded the Committee that the first recommendation of the Idaho Transportation Resource Task Force (ITRTF) submitted to the Legislature in March of 2003 was to examine the needs assessment methods used to assess transportation needs, especially for local highway jurisdictions. LHTAC felt it was the Council's responsibility to come up with a cost effective way of doing that. LHTAC wrote a whitepaper in the summer of 2003 proposing a "needs assessment methods" for local highway jurisdictions and concluded that agreement was necessary that the proposed approach was acceptable to establish an on-going method. The paper was circulated in the fall of 2003 and initial verbal responses were that the proposed approach had merit.

LHTAC realized it would not be able to get up-to-date in-depth, detailed information about local highway systems (like information the Council received from a 1995 study). So the Council focused on asset management; it is a software which will define the current condition, the useful life, and how much of an investment it will take to change that. LHTAC's people have worked to incorporate the assessment needs process into the Road Scholar program. If people have a better understanding of how to evaluate and spend money, they will do a more efficient job.

It is imperative that there is agreement on how to supply information to the Legislature so legislators will be able to make informed decisions on spending resources in the future. LHTAC will continue to work with ITD, the Legislative Services office, and the Division of Financial Management to clarify interests, to develop approaches and to develop estimated cost and benefits for each approach. LHTAC will complete a write-up of interests and the assessment approaches considered valid along with approximate costs. His office will report those findings to the Legislature next year.

J. R. Van Tassel, Nez Perce County Commissioner and a member of LHTAC, said the local highway jurisdictions realized over the past few years that they were not getting enough money on the pavement to save it before more traditional monies come along. Because of that, LHTAC and Rep. Ridinger have proposed legislation, now House Bill 655, to raise funds for highway construction. The bill would increase the title fee on vehicles by $10.00 (to $18.00) which should provide approximately $5 million for the Local Highway Economic Investment Fund. One-half of the fund would be used for urban projects and one-half would be used for rural projects.
Adjourn The meeting adjourned at 2:50 p.m.

DATE: February 19, 2004
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
PLACE: Room 426
MEMBERS PRESENT: Chairman Ingram, Vice Chairman Keough, Senators Geddes, Brandt, Bailey, McWilliams, Marley, Calabretta


Senator Little
MINUTES: Senator Bailey moved that the minutes of Tuesday, February 17, 2004, be accepted as written. The motion was seconded by Senator Keough and approved by voice vote.
Page Recognition Chairman Ingram thanked the Committee's high school page, Angela Dreher, for her service and presented her with a gift certificate from the Committee. He introduced Teri Roderick, a student at Mountain View High School in Meridian, who has been assigned to the Transportation Committee for the remainder of the legislative session.
S 1271 Highways; Allow for Placement of Political Signs on Right-of-Way

Senators Stegner and Bailey are co-sponsors of S 1271. Senator Stegner introduced S 1271 which would authorize the placement of certain political signs on highway rights-of-way 30 days before and until 3 days after a statewide primary or general election, subject to current restrictions. This legislation will codify what is currently being practiced. The interstate highway system is exempted. This bill will provide uniformity throughout the state; in the past, some local jurisdictions were not allowing signs to be posted on highway rights-of-way.

Motion Senator Brandt moved that S 1271 be sent to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Calabretta and approved by voice vote. A "no" vote was recorded for Senator Keough.
S 1224 Establish a Military Veteran Motorcycle License Plate

Senator Bailey presented S 1224 that establishes an Idaho veteran motorcycle license plate program to allow veterans with motorcycles to express their esprit de corps and assist in the funding of maintenance and operation for the new Idaho Veteran Cemetery to be dedicated later this summer. There are approximately 140,000 veterans in Idaho; only veterans will be allowed to purchase this special plate. $10 of each initial or renewal fee will go to the state highway fund and $15 of the initial fee or $5 of renewal fee will go to the Veteran's Cemetery maintenance fund.

Charles Coulter, a Board member of Idaho Coalition for Motorcycle Safety (ICMS), spoke in support of S 1224. ICMS is a statewide coalition of individuals and motorcycle riding groups interested in regulatory measures as well as motorcycle safety. It is the consensus of the coalition that the proposed legislation is a good idea. Having a motorcycle license plate will give members the opportunity to recognize and celebrate veterans and allow them to demonstrate their pride in having served their country. He encouraged the Committee to pass S 1224.
Tom Titus, is an ICMS Board member and also co-founder of Veteran Brotherhood, a national organization based in Idaho that works with POW/MIA organizations. He is a two-combat tour Vietnam veteran, has received the purple heart award, and is a disabled veteran. He has lived in Idaho for 27 years and has both the purple heart and disabled veteran license plates on his vehicles. He is also representing the Idaho coordinator for the "Run for the Wall" group. He has ridden his motorcycle to Washington, D.C. 13 times and would like to show his pride by having a motorcycle license plate honoring veterans. He is proud to be veteran and supports S 1224.
Richard Jones, the Administrator for the Idaho Division of Veterans Services, spoke in support of S 1224. The bill has a positive fiscal impact; it pays its own way. His office met with the Idaho Department of Transportation (ITD) to work through concerns regarding the size of the graphic on the plate to ensure there was sufficient space for the digits; the motorcycle license plate is much smaller than a vehicle plate. This plate meets the needs of both the veterans and ITD. There are a number of motorcycle groups throughout state who do very positive charitable work. The POW/MIA flag now flying at the Idaho Statehouse will be transported by motorcycle groups to its final resting place at the new Veteran's Cemetery when it is dedicated later this year. S 1224 is a positive bill and he encouraged the Committee to support it.
Chairman Ingram requested that Mo Detmar explain the Idaho Transportation Department's position on who pays initial set-up costs for specialty license plates.
Mo Detmar, Administrator for the Division of Motor Vehicles, Idaho Transportation Department, indicated that the sponsors of specialty plates must pay initial costs which run between $4,000 and $5,000. However, there is precedence for not collecting set-up fees for speciality plates for special recognition, (Purple Heart, National Guard, Former Prisoner of War, Congressional Medal of Honor, and Pearl Harbor Survivor) because these programs recognize those who have served this country. The estimated set-up cost for the veteran motorcycle plate is $4,300. ITD will make an exception to its policy for this particular plate and absorb the $4,300 up-front cost, since the plate recognizes those who served their country and facilitates the construction and maintenance of the soon-to-be dedicated Idaho Veteran's Cemetery.

As in the past, when future requests are received for specialty plates, the license plate sponsors will be expected to pay all up-front costs of the plate program.

Motion Senator Keough moved that S 1224 be sent to the floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Brandt and approved by voice vote.
Chairman Ingram turned the gavel to Vice Chair Keough for the remainder of the meeting.
Presentation Interagency Working Group for Public Transportation (IWG)

Richard (Dick) Juengling, IWG Chairman, said the IWG was established by state statute to analyze public transportation needs, identify areas for coordination and to develop strategies for eliminating procedural and regulatory barriers to coordination at the state level. The group is also charged with promoting cooperation and collaboration among transportation systems. He introduced the following IWG members who were in attendance: Larry Falkner, ITD; Randy May, Idaho Dept. of Health and Welfare; and Rodney McKnight, Idaho Department of Education. He defined public transportation as services open and available to the general public, anyone may ride, and usually there is a standard fare paid. Client transportation is arranged transportation for clients of a specific health and human service or educational program where an agency pays for transportation services; criteria, regulations, and restrictions typically apply. IWG deals mostly with client transportation issues where the cost of the service is paid for by an agency.

IWG has three projects in Idaho: Pocatello Regional Transit Four-County Regional Demonstration Project, the Magic Valley Initiative, and the North Central Idaho Rural Access project.

Larry Falkner, Administrator for the Division of Public Transportation, ITD and Vice-Chair of IWG, explained that the statute mandated each state agency to coordinate client and public transportation services and reduce duplication. There are 62 federal programs and many state programs that funnel money into Idaho with various programs, regulations and rules. The question was one of coordination. In looking at where to begin, IWG selected the Pocatello region, a 4-county area, as the pilot. The strategy was to have one coordinator for all of the funds and services. It significantly increased access for seniors, persons with disabilities, and the general public. He introduced Ron Binggeli, the Director for Pocatello Regional Transit. Idaho is getting national recognition because of the billing system used on the Pocatello project.
Ron Binggeli, the Pocatello Regional Transit Director, said his transit system began in 1972, was taken over by the City of Pocatello in 1982 and in 1988 it became a regional public transportation provider. This regional system operated under intergovernmental agreements which optimized the ability to coordinate in all areas of the region. The four counties involved are Bingham, Power, Franklin, and Bannock counties. Caribou and Bear Lake counties could be included in the project before the end of FY 2004. Because of the existing framework, it was an ideal project to determine what could be done to address duplication, customer responsiveness, efficiencies, leveraging of urban and rural Federal Transit Administration dollars in the context of a professional public transportation delivery system throughout the region. There has been willing participation from all agencies.

Throughout the region the system is effectively taking on a coordination role and is becoming the one-stop shop for public transit both for state agencies and the senior, disabled and general public users. This project can be replicated throughout Idaho.

Larry Falkner, ITD, discussed the Magic Valley Initiative. IWG was contacted because the Magic Valley area was seeking assistance 1) due to plant closures that affected about 1600 people, 2) to help promote economic development, and 3) to assist in expanding service within their existing budget. The strategy was to seek integrated regional transportation, access jobs and job training, to access medical services, and do a needs assessment and provide recommendations.
Randy May, Division of Medicaid, Department of Health and Welfare, discussed the pilot project in North Central Idaho where there are significant transportation challenges and access to medical and community supports are fragile. There are very few public transportation providers in the area. IWG felt it would be possible to leverage publicly funded transportation assets already provided in the area. IWG's strategy was to develop a pilot project using school buses and allow a mixed population. Two school districts (Kamiah and Orofino) agreed to partner with IWG. The plan is to transport not only school children, but also Medicaid clients. This program should be put in place later this year and could be expanded to other school districts and communities in the area.
Dick Juengling concluded by saying they are very proud of what has been accomplished due to positive relationships and the ability of the agencies to work together. IWG has been effective at making good use of taxpayer dollars and leveraging available funds. The agency is working to replicate similar projects throughout Idaho, will continue to identify and reduce barriers and will also work to enhance community mobility. Mr. Juengling feels IWG's future will be successful as long as the group continues to build at the grassroots level. This coordinated effort not only helps move people but supports local economic development. What is being done is not only a good model for agency coordination at the local level but at the state level as well. If all state agencies would work together on common issues, so much more could be done, even with limited resources.
Adjourn The meeting adjourned at 2:40 p.m.

DATE: February 24, 2004
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
PLACE: Room 426
MEMBERS PRESENT: Chairman Ingram, Vice Chairman Keough, Senators Geddes, Brandt, Little, Bailey, McWilliams, Calabretta


Senator Marley
MINUTES: Senator Calabretta moved that the minutes of Thursday, February 19, 2004, be accepted as written. The motion was seconded by Senator Bailey and approved by voice vote.
S 1311 Establish the School Transportation Safety Awareness License Plate

Rod McKnight, presented S 1311 which would create the Pupil Transportation Support Program fund, provide money for the fund and provide for use of the money. The legislation would also establish the Idaho School Transportation Safety Awareness License Plate program. It would defray costs associated with Idaho's oversight of the statewide pupil transportation support program.

The familiar image of the yellow school bus serves as an emblem of education in Idaho. During FY02 approximately 2,643 public school buses traveled an estimated 28.6 million miles to transport 249,136 children to and from school and school-related activities. In a 2002 report, the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences, indicated that about 800 school-aged children are killed in motor vehicle crashes during normal school travel hours and about 20 (or two percent) are school bus related. In the past, public service announcements promoted school safety but exposure to the ads was limited. With this bill, a school transportation safety awareness license plate would serve as a persistent reminder to the motoring public that stopping for school buses during loading and unloading procedures is mandated by statute. The funds from the license plate would be used 1) to develop a curriculum about safe routes to school, 2) to promote and integrate health, fitness, traffic relief, environmental and student safety education and awareness, and 3) to help teach students the importance of using safety skills when traveling to and from school and to launch driver safety campaigns.

Linda Braswell, a school bus trainer from the Kuna School District with 19 years experience, spoke in support of S 1311. She expressed concern about the lack of knowledge among the driving public on what to do when they encounter a school bus. The main concern is for the safety and well being of the students. With funds from license plate proceeds, a program will be set up to educate the general public throughout Idaho. In the past, brief television spots have not reached all of the people that the funding from this program could. She encouraged the Committee to support S 1311.
Mary Hafer, a Kuna School bus driver, gave a brief demonstration using "Buster," a remote control school bus used to teach school transportation safety techniques to school students.
Motion Senator Keough moved that S 1311 be sent to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Calabretta and carried by voice vote. Senators Geddes and Little voted no.
Introduction Chairman Ingram introduced three high school students sitting in the audience: Thomas Tolloczko, a foreign exchange student, and Ed and Mark Pemble.
S 1286 Crime of Flooding Highways; allow 24-hr period to correct problem

Stuart Davis, Executive Director of the Idaho Association of Highway Districts, presented S 1286 which provides that a person may not be charged under the provisions of flooding a highway if the flooding from a sprinkler or other water conveyance system is the result of mechanical failure, wind or other climatic conditions or other circumstances that cannot be controlled provided that violations are corrected within 24 hours after written notification by a governmental authority. Mr. Davis indicated the Idaho Water Users wanted to amend the bill to make sure the present language does not impede the progress of agriculture and he recommended that S 1287 be sent to the amending order.

Motion Senator Brandt moved that S 1286 be sent to the Fourteenth Order for amendment. The motion was seconded by Senator Bailey and approved by voice vote.
S 1287 Highway Districts; provide additional powers to commissioners

Stuart Davis, Executive Director of the Idaho Association of Highway Districts, explained that S 1287 would allow a highway district board of commissioners to pass ordinances pursuant to Section 40-1310A, Idaho Code. If a highway district shares jurisdiction over the secondary highways within a county, then the county clerk would keep the ordinances passed by the highway district(s) located within the county. The proposed legislation would allow highway district commissioners to better regulate their highway systems. Mr. Davis recommended that

S 1287 be sent to the amending order to insert more restrictive language so the only ordinances commissioners could pass would specifically relate to speed limits, weight limits and height and length of vehicles.

Susan Eastlake indicated that when there is any change to an ordinance that is material, the commissioners are not allowed to adopt the ordinance. The process must begin again with the change included.

Motion Senator Brandt moved that S 1287 be sent to the Fourteenth Order for amendment. The motion was seconded by Senator Geddes and approved by voice vote.
S 1274 Driver's Licenses; clarifications

Ed Pemble, Drivers Services, Division of Motor Vehicles, Idaho Transportation Department, explained that S 1274 will clean up and clarify several sections of Idaho Code applying to driver's license requirements, suspensions, disqualifications and revocations. It will also require sheriffs to provide written notification of sex-offender registration requirements to out-of-state applicants for identification cards. Further, it would authorize licensed physicians' assistants and licensed advanced-

practice nurses to certify permanent disability for driver's license purposes.

Motion Senator Keough moved that S 1274 be sent to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Little and approved by voice vote.
S 1275 Driver's Licenses; revise requirements for hazmat transporters

Ed Pemble, Drivers Services, Division of Motor Vehicles, Idaho Transportation Department, explained that S 1275 would revise requirements for commercial driver licenses and transporters of hazardous materials requiring a hazardous materials (hazmat) endorsement, bringing Idaho law into conformance with the new federal requirements. The proposed legislation prohibits issuing, renewing, transferring or upgrading a commercial driver's license with a hazardous materials endorsement unless the U. S. Department of Justice has first conducted a background records check of the applicant, and the Transportation Security Administration has determined that the applicant does not pose a security risk warranting denial of the hazardous materials endorsement. An applicant for a hazardous materials endorsement must be a U. S. citizen or be an alien classified as a lawful permanent resident of the United States with a valid Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS) alien registration number. The bill also states that the Idaho Transportation Department shall not issue a hazardous material endorsement on any instruction permit. Mr. Pemble handed out a list of disqualifying crimes (felonies) that was specifically designed to identify those most likely to endanger the nation's transportation network.

Hal Putnam, Program Manager of Drivers Records, Division of Motor Vehicles, Idaho Transportation Department, responded when questioned regarding what commodities were hazardous materials that he was not sure but a list could be supplied.
Motion Senator Calabretta moved that S 1275 be sent to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator McWilliams.
Substitute Motion Senator Little moved that S 1275 be held for time certain until Tuesday, March 2, 2004 to provide time for ITD to submit a listing of commodities on the hazardous materials list. The motion was seconded by Senator Keough and carried by voice vote.
Presentation Idaho Association of Highway Districts

Susan Eastlake, President of the Idaho Association of Highway Districts, said her association is governed by a 15-member board of directors, and employs a full-time executive director, and one part time office assistant. The Association represents its members at the Idaho legislature, at the federal level, and also assists members with a variety of individual issues. She introduced the following highway district commissioners: Clark Kauffman, Filer Highway District; Ralph Gant, Nampa Highway District, Ralph Little, Canyon Highway District #4; Olene Warr, Raft River Highway District; and Lynn Humphreys, Post Falls Highway District.

The 64 Idaho highway districts are special taxing districts responsible for maintaining approximately 12,000 miles of secondary roads in Idaho. There is one countywide highway district (Ada County) and it maintains highway responsibility for all highways in the county, including the city systems. The 63 smaller districts do not have responsibility over city highways. Highway district commissioners are elected to four-year terms. All 64 highway districts have at least a part-time clerk and road foreman who is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the district. The commissioners of a highway district have exclusive general supervision and jurisdiction over all highways and public rights-of-way within their highway system with full power to construct, maintain, repair, acquire, purchase and improve all highways within their highway system. Districts also maintain 30% of the local railroad crossings, and 39% of the bridges in Idaho.

Highway districts are funded from two principal sources: 1) user fees are revenues from vehicle registration and fuel taxes, distributed through the State Highway Account and 2) property taxes. Additional sources of funding include a share of sales tax revenue, a special vehicle registration fee, the creation of Local Improvement Districts, federal transportation funds, and a few other revenue sources. Impact fees for highway projects are in use only by Ada County Highway District. Highway districts have suffered from the economic slowdown in recent years and the districts have a difficult challenge in budgeting as costs increase and revenues decline.

Adjourn The meeting adjourned at 2:50 p.m.

DATE: February 26, 2004
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
PLACE: Room 426
MEMBERS PRESENT: Chairman Ingram, Vice Chairman Keough, Senators Geddes, Brandt, Little, Bailey, McWilliams, Marley, Calabretta


MINUTES: No minutes were approved.
Confirmation Hearing Bruce Sweeney Reappointment to Idaho Transportation Board (ITD)

Former Senator Bruce Sweeney received a Gubernatorial reappointment to the Idaho Transportation Board for a term commencing January 31, 2004 and expiring January 31, 2010, subject to Senate confirmation. He served in the U. S. Air Force for three years as a pilot after he graduated from college; he started his own business in 1957. He served in the Idaho House of Representatives and Senate, retiring in 1998. Later the same year, he was appointed to the Idaho Transportation Board. While still in the Senate, he opposed increasing the ITD Board to 7 members because of the possibility of regionalism but was pleased to report that has not occurred. The Board members work as a team; they are very pleased with Dave Ekern, the new ITD Director. He said the Board is concerned because ITD is losing valuable employees to cities and counties due to pay issues. ITD is now contracting 70% to 80% of engineering services outside the Department and the Board feels ITD needs to do more inhouse.

Motion on Confirmation Senator Brandt moved that the Senate Transportation Committee recommend that the Senate confirm the Gubernatorial reappointment of Bruce Sweeney of Lewiston, Idaho, to the Idaho Transportation Board for a term commencing January 31, 2004, and expiring January 31, 2010. The motion was seconded by Senator Marley and approved by voice vote.
H 540 Motor Vehicle Titles; Terminal Rental Adjustment Clause (TRAC)

Senator Ingram introduced H 540 which provides that a transaction involving a motor vehicle or trailer does not create a sale or security interest merely because the transaction includes a terminal rental adjustment clause. The proposed legislation will clarify that motor vehicle fleet leasing contracts that contain Terminal Rental Adjustment Clause (TRAC) provisions are true leases and should be accorded the same treatment in the area of bankruptcy that currently exists in the area

of federal taxation. This bill will make Idaho law consistent with the majority of other states' laws.

Motion Senator Brandt moved that H 540 be sent to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Marley and approved by voice vote.
H 480 Establish a Lewiston Special License Plate Program

Representative Naccarato explained that H 480 would establish an historic Lewiston license plate to recognize Lewiston's role in Idaho history as the first territorial capitol. The revenue generated from the sale of license plates will be used to promote historical preservation under the guidance of the Lewiston Historical Preservation Commission. The city of Lewiston will apply revenues to educational, economical, and outreach components to provide for speakers, presenters, and education programs teaching Idaho history in grades K-12. It will also provide for identification and interpretation of historic buildings, and further provide for matching funds for historic preservation such as loans and grants.

Greg Follett of Lewiston, Idaho, spoke in support of S 480. His family has owned retail businesses in the Lewiston area since the early 1860's. Currently, he operates a retail home furnishings store in Lewiston, serves on the Board of the Lewiston Historic Preservation Commission and supports the Nez Perce County Historical Society and Museum. H 480 offers several economic benefits as well as many educational opportunities. Through planning, restoration, education and marketing, Lewiston plans to educate people from throughout Idaho about the city's vast history. The Historic Lewiston License Plate program will allow reinvestment in the community, surrounding counties and all of Idaho.
John A. Mock, Chairman of the Historic Preservation Commission for the city of Lewiston, indicated his commission unanimously supports H 480 because the license plate program offers many potential benefits and opportunities for all citizens of Idaho, including educational, economical, and historical.
Motion Senator Bailey moved that H 480 be sent to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Brandt and approved by voice vote. Senators Geddes and Little voted no.
S 1285 Public Safety and Protection; Safe Routes To School

Senator Werk introduced S 1285 that will provide funds for a Safe Routes to School grant program using a portion of existing funds in the Idaho Transportation Railroad Grade Crossing Protection Fund. A statewide Safe Routes to School program will encourage children to walk to school resulting in a reduction in public school transportation costs, relieve traffic congestion in neighborhoods and near schools, and alleviate unsafe conditions near public schools. With this proposed legislation, one-third of the annual allocation but not less than $85,000 would be put in the Railroad Grade Crossing Protection Fund to be renamed the Public Safety and Protection Fund. The fiscal impact is estimated to be $29,000 annually to fund a part-time grant administrator for the Safe Routes to School program.

Senator Werk discussed 1) some statistics outlining the critical nature of the safe routes problem, 2) an overview of the process in developing an alternative to S 1285, 3) an outline of the Safe Routes to School program, and 4) had people testify about the difficulties faced in walking or biking to school safely. He acknowledged the outstanding job Operation Lifesaver has done in improving safety associated with railroads in Idaho. Operation Lifesaver representatives are concerned about any loss of funds from the railroad protection fund; they have assisted in the process of trying to find alternative funding for the Safe Routes to School (SR2S) program. ITD has also been involved in the effort to locate alternative fund sources for SR2S. He believes an agreement has been worked out with the Idaho Transportation Department 1) to assess the SR2S needs in the state, 2) to bring together all of the stakeholders to develop an SR2S program, 3) to evaluate and identify both state and federal funding sources, and 4) to construct a framework for taking advantage of Safe Routes to School funds, some of which could come from the pending federal transportation reauthorization bill. A copy of his testimony is attached to the minutes.

Elaine Clegg, a Boise City councilwoman who is representing Idaho Smart Growth, spoke in support of S 1285. She discussed an Executive Summary on the Safe Routes to School Program at the national level. It is a new movement emerging that is focused on getting children back on their feet and on bikes. Neighborhood groups, traffic engineers, local officials, as well as state transportation departments are working together to make streets safer for pedestrians and bicyclists along school routes. There are four primary models used in the SR2S program: engineering, enforcement, encouragement/education and dedicated resources. Creating a safe route to school requires a combination of these four approaches. It is her opinion that at some point the state will need to provide dedicated state funds to complement matching federal dollars. A copy of the executive summary is attached.
The Committee heard short testimonies from the following elementary school students who are members of Lane DeGiulio's fourth grade class at McKinley Elementary School in Boise, Idaho:

Sarah Davis, Ashley Stoltz, Hannah Peters, Cody Stone, Sam Kime, and Dakkota Terres. Copies of their testimonies are attached. Riley Johncox, a first grade student at McKinley, also spoke.

Julie Pipal, Budget, Policy, and Intergovernmental Relations, Idaho Transportation Department, indicated that ITD would like to see a working group or task force investigate this issue further since the Department has not had adequate time to look at alternative funding sources for the SR2S program. There is a concern that there needs to be a dedicated source of funding. She said other states are waiting to establish a framework to deal with federal funds that might be available with the reauthorization bill. Some of the things ITD would like to see come out of this process are 1) a dovetailing of Idaho's transportation planning process and existing programs, 2) to have all interested parties come together to determine what is needed and what communities want, 3) to look at current grant and funding opportunities that could be sought on a competitive basis with existing funds, 4) to construct a framework for accepting SR2S funds that come with pending federal transportation reauthorization, 5) to look at state, local, and federal funding opportunities for this type of program and come up with a meaningful plan, 6) to have SR2S representatives make a presentation to the Idaho Transportation Board before June, 2004, and 7) to work with others to bring forth a program in 2005.
Susan Eastlake, an Ada County Highway District Commissioner (ACHD), shared a large map with the Committee that showed how ACHD has inventoried its assets. Using GIS mapping, Ada County has been able to detail all of the sidewalks (or lack thereof) within a 1.5 mile radius of every school in Ada County. She estimated it would cost $29 million to provide sidewalks only just within city limits in areas not already included in ACHD's plan for the next 20 years. She said it is an outrageous problem and the Ada County Highway District is doing everything it can to find funding sources. Her purpose in bringing the map was to let the Committee know it is possible for other communities to identify very particularly what their needs are, in order to start prioritizing them so that when money is available, it can be spent on the most important projects first.

She also shared the following. Since 1994 in Ada County when local neighborhoods want sidewalks, they are asked to sign petitions stating that they will dedicate the rights-of-way, if any are needed (or dedicate temporary easements if needed) to do construction. ACHD has had great success because people have been willing/volunteering rights-of-way in order to get sidewalks installed. She believes when the projects are moved to arterial and collector systems that the business community will do the same thing. People understand the benefits of adding sidewalks for safety and increased property values.

Bob Adams, a track manager for Idaho Northern & Pacific Railroad (also representing Thunder Mountain Line) that operates in Valley, Boise, Gem, Payette, Ada and Canyon counties, encouraged the Committee not to take any funds from the current railroad account which currently amounts to $250,000 annually. He talked about some of the projects the money is used for. He does support the Safe Routes to School program but does not want money taken from the railroad account.
Bruce Sweeney, Idaho Transportation Board member, said the Board has not had time to review the Safe Routes to School program.
Joe Peagller, Rail Safety, Idaho Transportation Department, oversees spending of the Grade Crossing Protection Fund. He passed out a copy of the annual report dated January 31, 2004, which indicates a fund balance of $2,065.74. He discussed some of the projects shown on the annual report and indicated the Fund benefits the entire state. They prioritize projects and schedule improvements on the most dangerous crossings throughout the state. He agreed that funding needs to be found for the SR2S program but under no circumstances should money be removed from the railroad account. A copy of the annual report is attached to the minutes.
Senator Werk thanked all of those involved in recent discussions. He looks forward to working with the Idaho Transportation Department and other interested parties this coming summer to locate revenue sources and put a framework in place for accepting funds for the Safe Routes to School program. He requested that the Chairman convene a public meeting this summer to continue the process. Because of outstanding cooperation, he felt S 1285 should "be tabled as we move forward in partnership with ITD and other interested groups in developing a statewide Safe Routes to School program."
Motion Senator Marley moved that S 1285 be held in Committee. Senator Bailey seconded the motion that was approved by voice vote.
Adjourn The meeting adjourned at 3:10 p.m.

DATE: March 2, 2004
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
PLACE: Room 426
MEMBERS PRESENT: Chairman Ingram, Vice Chairman Keough, Senators Geddes, Brandt, Little, Bailey, Marley, Calabretta


Senator McWilliams
MINUTES: Senator Bailey moved that the minutes of Tuesday, February 24, 2004, be accepted as written. The motion was seconded by Senator Marley and approved by voice vote.

Senator Keough moved that the minutes of Thursday, February 26, 2004, be accepted as written. The motion was seconded by Senator Bailey and approved by voice vote.

S 1275 Driver's Licenses; Revise Requirements for Hazmat Endorsement

S 1275 was held from Tuesday, February 24, 2004, in order to review the commodities that appear on the hazardous materials list. It was noted there is an exemption on Page 8 for those involved in the agricultural industry which satisfied a concern of some Committee members. (Page 8 is attached to the minutes.)

Motion Senator Brandt moved that S 1275 be sent to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Bailey and approved by voice vote.
HJM 15 Memorial to Congress; Move Definition of "ag commodities" to Law

Due to Senator McWilliams' absence, HJM 15 will be heard on Thursday, March 4, 2004.

S 1395 Establish an Idaho Freemason License Plate Program

Senator Marley presented S 1395 that will establish an Idaho Freemason license plate program. The funds will be used exclusively for supporting charitable activities.

Harry Black, Deputy Grand Master in Boise, talked about how the funds would be used for charitable purposes. They have a national service association based in Washington, D. C. that receives funds from their state organizations. They support youth with scholarships, assist widows and orphans and numerous other charities. A branch of Freemasonry known as Shrine Masons operate a large network of hospitals for burned and orthopaedically impaired children; the Scottish Rite Masons support a network of over 150 Childhood Language Disorder clinics, centers, and programs. Their organization also has eye clinics which provides glasses and operations to those in need. Additionally, Masons perform public service activities in local communities.
Motion Senator Brandt moved that S 1395 be sent to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Bailey.


Senator Calabretta moved that S1395 be held in Committee. The motion was seconded by Senator Geddes.
Discussion Senator Calabretta confirmed that funds received are sent into a national masonic charity fund. Mr. Black said there is a limit to the amount of money that can be contributed from Idaho; he thought the limit was $5,000. Senator Calabretta questioned about the fraternal nature of the organization (only men are members). Mr. Black responded in the affirmative but indicated they have organizations for only women such as Daughters of the Nile. Eastern Star involves both men and women.

Senator Calabretta expressed the following concerns with S 1395. She always votes no on special plates but beyond that, unike all other license plates, the money derived from sales of the Freemason license plate will not stay in Idaho. Her last concern is that having special license plates is not a right but a privilege and opportunity afforded groups. She questioned whether it was appropriate for groups that have clear segregation of membership be allowed to have the benefit of government's privilege.

Roll Call Vote

on Substitute Motion

Ayes: Ingram, Geddes, Little, Calabretta

Nays: Keough, Brandt, Bailey, Marley

Absent: McWilliams

On a 4-4-1 vote, the motion died.

Roll Call Vote

on Original Motion

Ayes: Ingram, Keough, Brandt, Bailey, Marley

Nays: Geddes, Little, Calabretta

Absent: McWilliams

On a 5-3-1 vote, the motion passed to send S 1395 to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation.

H 473 Bids on State Highway System; Remedy for Losing Bidder

Steve Bywater, Deputy Attorney General representing the Idaho Transportation Department (ITD), explained that H 473 will provide an administrative remedy for resolving disputes for a losing bidder to contest a contract offer. There is a proposed amendment to the bill suggested by the Associated General Contractors that would change the language "lowest and best bidder" to "lowest responsible bidder." Because many state highway projects are time sensitive, it is in the best interest of both the contractors and the ITD to obtain prompt, impartial decisions when there is a dispute.

H 474 Motor Carrier Registration and Audit Guidelines

Mo Detmar, representing the Division of Motor Vehicles for the Idaho Transportation Department, explained that H 474 would transfer motor carrier audit functions from the Idaho Transportation Department to the State Tax Commission. The audit function is currently being transferred using a Memorandum of Understanding for FY 04. Legislation is needed to permanently transfer four auditors and one half-time clerical position to the State Tax Commission along with the appropriation for related expenses.

Motion Senator Keough moved that H 474 be sent to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Little and approved by voice vote.
H 475 Fuels Tax and Refunds; expand definition; fuel tax exemption

Ted Spangler or Dan John, representing the State Tax Commission, presented H 475 which amends the motor fuels tax statutes to clarify when refunds are payable on fuel used in all-terrain vehicles (ATV) not required to be licensed or to have a recreational permit. The effect is to eliminate the difference between three-wheel and four-wheel ATVs. Currently fuel used in three-wheel ATVs is taxable but the tax on fuel used in four-wheel ATVs (if not licensed) can be refunded.

Motion Senator Keough moved that H 474 be sent to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Brandt and approved by voice vote.
Presentation Idaho Motorcycle Safety Program (STAR)

Ron Shepard, Motorcycle Safety, Bureau of Finance and Transportation for the State Department of Education, gave a powerpoint presentation on the Idaho Skills Training Advantage of Riders (STAR) program which was created in 1994. Funding comes from a $1.00 charge per driver's license. There are two training courses: novice ($75 tuition) and experienced ($40 tuition); 1,781 students were trained in 2003. He briefly discussed challenges the STAR program is facing with staff, training locations, and resources. The state owns 79 motorcyles and also uses another 44 that are on loan from local dealerships. It costs $200 to train each person, but the riders are only charged $75.00. He feels the program has been a success since fatalities have decreased by 40% and, for those under 21 years of age, injuries and fatalities are down 63%. A copy of his power-point presentation is attached to the minutes.

Adjourn The meeting adjourned at 2:45 p.m.


March 4, 2004


1:30 p.m.


Room 426


Chairman Ingram, Vice Chairman Keough, Senators Geddes, Brandt, Little, Bailey, McWilliams, Marley, Calabretta





Senator Calabretta moved that the minutes of Thursday, March 2, 2004, be accepted as written. The motion was seconded by Senator Bailey and approved by voice vote.


Mr. Steve Moreno, Director of Administration for the Federal Highway Administration introduced Ms. Pam Brister, Assistant Director who is on temporary assignment. Included in the minutes is a hard copy of the Power Point Presentation. He explained that the Four Resource Centers are located in Baltimore, Atlanta, Denver, San Francisco, and Chicago. He joked that there are actually four and one half centers. He stated that there are three Federal Lands offices, which provide highway construction work on federal property. He explained that all constitutional funds flow through the State Department of Transportation.

Mr. Moreno reported that there are many efforts with regard to transportation. He pointed out the rumble strips on the highways to reduce fatalities and injuries; construction projects being worked on during the night or the roadways closed entirely in order to provide faster repairs and less congestion. He then pointed out that they are starting to implement the "511" telephone number for nation-wide access to road conditions.

Mr. Moreno shared that the Stewardship program has 17 employees including support staff and added that they comply with EPA, BLM, Fish and Wildlife as well as other entities. He explained that funds are 80% Federal and 20% from State, Locals, and other sources. He pointed out that the western states have a lot of federal land so the states actually fall under the "sliding scale" where they can receive up to 92% from Federal funds.

Mr. Moreno reported that Congress is working on the "Safe T" legislation and stated that the department has requested $255 billion for a six-year project. He added that the Senate is looking at $318 billion with the House expecting $375 billion.


Ms. Delores Macias, Division Administrator with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration shared the handouts included with the minutes and explained that the Port of Entry and the Idaho State Police are not part of the MCSA, but are a part of the United States Department of Transportation.

She reported that she has 6 people in her office and introduced Transportation Assistant Robert Swanson.

Ms. Macias explained that the Port of Entry in Idaho has 12 facilities and added that their number one goal is to reduce motor carrier crashes. She then explained the steps that she goes through when auditing a carrier and reported that each carrier must carry $750,000 in insurance for general commodities, $1 million for hazardous materials, and $5 million for passenger carriers. She also added that they look at controlled substance abuse, medical certificates, and other documents.

She explained that the State Police regulates the Intrastate carriage if a carrier only travels within the state, but stated that if a carrier crosses the state line, then the Federal division regulates them. She then directed the attention of the committee to the little blue card that was included with the handouts regarding the hours of service.

She concluded by saying that they also regulate hazardous material haulers within the state as well.

H 604

Optical Strobe Light Devices; definition; limit use to certain vehicles. Provide misdemeanor penalties for violation.


Representative JoAn Wood explained that this legislation would outlaw a device called a Mobile Infrared Remote Transmitter that can be clicked to change the traffic signals and can be purchased on the Internet for $79.95.

Senator Bailey stated that he has no problem with the concept, but asked about Section 2 regarding the "misdemeanor" and asked why it was so high. Representative Wood replied that we are talking about lives and the creation of serious accidents. Senator Bailey asked how accidents could be created since one light is changed to green while the other light is changed to red. Representative Wood answered that if one is used during rush hour traffic, it disrupts the timing of the signals and gridlock could ensue.

Senator Bailey asked why the Department of Transportation, City and County would be authorized to have one of these if only an emergency vehicle is defined by code. Representative Wood replied that some of the vehicles in these agencies are authorized as emergency vehicles because they keep the traffic lights working and are vulnerable to being hit. Senator Bailey noted that currently the only ones using these are fire trucks, and ambulances and added that not even police have these. He asked why this allows others to use these since the purpose is to change the lights for an emergency. Representative Wood responded that they would only use one if they were out there repairing a light. Senator Bailey asked why the Department of Transportation would ever need one. Mr. Craig Quintana with ACHD replied that they don't use one at any of their facilities but added that others might be using them. Representative Wood recounted a time when an overpass was being repaired in her district and noted the need for changing the lights during that repair process. Mr. Chuck Winder, Chairman of the Board of Transportation commented that the Department does respond to accidents and assist the ISP with traffic control.

Senator Bailey commented that he is concerned that if this were passed, we would be seeing tow trucks wanting them and the emergency light being moved into a non-emergency vehicle. Representative Wood responded that the State of Washington has already passed this and added that the Federal Government is making a move to ban them. She explained that this is only going to outlaw a citizen from using one.


Senator Brandt moved that H 604 be sent to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Marley and approved by voice vote. Senator Bailey voted in opposition. Senator McWilliams will carry on the floor.

H 684

Fuels Tax Credits and Refunds to Consumers; to define "idling" and to provide that no refund of special fuels tax shall be paid on special fuels used while idling a registered motor vehicle.


Representative Tim Ridinger explained that this defines "idling" and is status quo because no one has applied for this tax credit.

Senator Marley asked what is "idling". Representative Ridinger replied that it is when a truck driver leaves the engine running for hours while he is having dinner. He added that this could include cement trucks, feed trucks, PTO and others.


Senator Brandt moved that H 684 be sent to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Bailey and approved by voice vote. Senator Keough will carry on the floor.

H 616

Slow Moving Vehicles; to clarify operation of slow moving vehicles. Provide misdemeanor penalties for violation.


Representative Ken Roberts explained that this would allow newer, more modern equipment to travel at higher than 25 mph if it is built to travel faster. He stated that newer Hay stack wagons that travel two to three miles from the field to the storage area are designed to travel up to 55 mph. He noted that one had been pulled over by ISP. He pointed out that Idaho Code 49-426 exempts out these vehicles, 49-619 cleans up the language and that line 26 adds, "but no such vehicle or equipment shall exceed the posted maximum speed limit and shall be operated by a licensed driver."

Senator Little asked about Section 4 regarding "snow". Representative Roberts replied that it was language that was pulled from the top of the bill.


Senator Keough moved that H 616 be sent to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Brandt and approved by voice vote. Senator Calabretta will carry on the floor.

HJM 15

Requesting Idaho Congressmen to co-sponsor H.R. 871 that would move the current definition of "agricultural commodities" from rule to law, taking it out of future Department of Transportation rulemaking.


Senator McWilliams explained that this maintains the hours of service for commodities. He pointed out that they are exempt right now due to "perishing" for items such as poultry, livestock, and feed grain.

Senator Keough asked about lines 27 ­ 29 and asked if he had the definition of the "agricultural commodity". Senator McWilliams replied that the law for poultry, livestock and feed grain includes the definition.

Senator Little asked if potatoes are covered. Senator McWilliams stated that they are not included in this and added that dairy isn't either.


Senator Geddes moved that HJM 15 be sent to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Brandt and approved by voice vote. Senator McWilliams will carry on the floor.

H 654

Single Countywide Highway Districts; to provide for dissolution of existing single countywide highway district.


Representative Leon Smith stated that this applies only to the Ada County Highway District since it is the only one in the state with 6 cities: Boise, Eagle, Garden City, Kuna, Star and Meridian, 1900 miles, 5 commissioners, and $62.5 million in expenditures. He stated that it was formed in 1971. He reported that he led the move to kill this type of legislation last year because it required 25 signatures to dissolve a district and noted his concern with small districts like the one in Star. He pointed out that dissolution should not be a tool if someone is mad because it is so drastic.

Senator Keough pointed out that the SOP talks about establishing a single district at 10%, but that we need 10% from each sub district. Representative Smith replied that this requires disenchantment to go to each of the districts. Senator Keough asked if this type of thing was just struck down with the Steward Initiative. Representative Smith answered that it had been revised once and added that there were three different Attorney General opinions where the Attorney General found nothing wrong with it.

Senator Geddes noted that he has seen little opposition to it and asked if there was anyone opposing it. Representative Smith replied that Representative Moyle led the charge against it in the House. Senator Geddes commented that he is concerned that the 25 signatures is too small, but added that the 10% is too big and asked if all the parties agreed to this number. Representative Smith answered that 10% is too small when you are talking about dissolution of the largest agency in the State of Idaho.

Senator Brandt asked how many times have there been attempts with the 25 signatures to dissolve the district. Representative Smith answered that he is only aware of one time with the ACHD.

Senator Little asked if an amendment to this code would help or hinder other counties. Representative Smith replied that he didn't think it would affect other counties.

Senator Keough stated that the SOP wasn't specific, but added that the law book does mirror this legislation.

Mr. Chuck Winder, Chairman of the Board for the Idaho Transportation Department testified as a private citizen. He stated that the 25 signatures are way too low and added that this is an improvement. He pointed out that the County Commissioners don't have to have elections right now. He commented that if the relationship doesn't get better, there are people who will get those 10% in signatures.

Senator McWilliams asked Mr. Winder to speak of the efforts of the highway district to increase the relationship with the public. Mr. Winder stated that the districts and communities needed better communication with better customer service and how to deal with the public. He pointed out that the highway district is improving the relationship with the commissioners, the mayor, and other neighborhood associations.

Senator Brandt asked what a qualified elector noted on lines 14 and 15 was. Representative Smith replied that it is a registered voter.

Mr. John Franden, President of the ACHD Commission testified that the highway district is multi-faceted in constituency and added that they spend a great deal of time on how to best serve that constituency. He reported that the district had been working on customer service training but added that they chose not to continue on with the program when the dissolutionment process began because of appearances. He further added that they had hired a consulting group to help train the staff.

Mr. Franden explained that the 25 signatures was originally established for small districts and added that the cost of addressing the dissolutionment was phenomenal. He pointed out that without this change, this situation could come up more and more if the district is not doing what the people want. He stated that there needs to be stability in the highway district.

Senator Keough noted that they are working hard on public relations with the builders and pointed out that she has received email messages from contractors who oppose this because they feel that 25 is not enough but the 10% is too high. Mr. Franden replied that the building contractors were in support of not allowing dissolutionment.

Senator McWilliams asked what they are doing with due process. Mr. Franden replied that in the past 13 years they have only had 4 times when a contractor had a dispute with the hearing process. He added that they are working on a fair process to be the best and most equitable for all involved.

Mr. Michael Gifford, Executive Director of the Idaho Association of General Contractors testified that his group consists of 900 members ranging from road to commercial contractors. He stated that they sent a letter in opposition last week and explained that they have had issues with the due process on contract claims. He reported that they met with the district last night and reached an agreement that will be written two weeks from yesterday. Because of this, he stated that they no longer oppose the bill. Chairman Ingram commented that he has 23 letters and asked if those individuals were members of his organization. Mr. Gifford replied that they are members, but since the meeting last night, they all no longer oppose the bill.

Mr. Rod Beck testified in opposition of the bill by directing the attention of the committee to a letter in the packets from Commissioner Fred Tillman. He asked if this legislation was necessary and what would happen if it didn't pass. He answered that there would be no problems and nothing would happen. He asked if the bill was good for Ada County, why is it not good for Canyon County or Twin Falls County. He stated that if the public comes up with a petition, then they will only get a hearing anyway. He pointed out that this has only happened one time in 33 years and that the law restricts the occurrence to once per any given year. He added that there are more negatives than positives if this passes.

Mr. Beck commented that since the 45 signatures were brought in, the district has improved operations and hired a consultant so the process has brought a positive outcome. He reported that this bill will require over 16,000 signatures on the petition with the only result being dissolutionment and asked why are we taking away one avenue for a hearing with the commissioners.

Chairman Ingram remarked that the commissioners did vote to put dissolutionment on the ballot and that it would apply to the entire state in order to give citizens a grievance avenue. He stated that in order to form the highway district, it took a 10% petition for the county commissioners to call for a questions for consolidation, yet doesn't carve out the commissioners. He reported that the Attorney General had not opined on the Constitutionality and added that the U S District Court had made a provision. He pointed out that under 40-1806, the hours are set from 1:00 to 7:00 and are not the same as the hours for a general election.

Representative Smith pointed out that the consequences are nothing unless the people start using it with regularity. He suggested that this "hammer" theory got the attention of the ACHD and commented that a recall would too.

Chairman Ingram stated that he would include his 23 letters in with the minutes.


Senator Bailey moved that H 654 be sent to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. The motion was seconded by Senator Marley.



Senator Brandt moved that H 654 be sent to the 14th Order for Amendments. The motion was seconded by Senator Little.


Senator Little commented that this goes back to incentive and pointed out 40-1502 with the code showing 5% or 25 signatures to consolidate. He went back to the section of countywide districts and noted that there would be more incentive if the level was lower and allowed consolidating. He reported that he would be offering an amendment to change this to 5%.

Roll Call Vote

on Substitute Motion

Keough, Brandt, Little

Nays: Ingram, Bailey, McWilliams, Marley, Calabretta

Absent: Geddes

On a 3-5-1 vote, the motion died.

Roll Call Vote

on Original Motion

Ingram, Keough, Brandt, Bailey, McWilliams, Marley, Calabretta

Nays: Little

Absent: Geddes

On a 7-1-1 vote, the motion passed to send H 654 to the Floor with a Do Pass recommendation. Senators Ingram and Bunderson will carry on the floor.


Senator Keough moved that the committee be adjourned. Senator Brandt seconded the motion. The motion was approved by voice vote.

The committee adjourned at 3:25 p.m.

DATE: March 9, 2004
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
PLACE: Room 426
MEMBERS PRESENT: Chairman Ingram, Vice Chairman Keough, Senators Geddes, Brandt, Little, Bailey, McWilliams, Marley


Senator Calabretta
MINUTES: Senator Bailey moved that the minutes of March 4, 2004, be approved as written. The motion was seconded by Senator Brandt and approved by voice vote.
S 1436 Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicles (GARVEE Bonds); to utilize bonds or notes to finance projects for transportation infrastructure

Senator Bunderson said that Idaho has an emerging crisis due to gridlock congestion on many of Idaho's state and local highways having a negative effect on commerce, economic development, and air quality. The road infrastructure throughout the state is critical to economic development. Steve Allred, Director of the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), has indicated the Treasure Valley has a high risk of non-attainment which will have serious consequences by slowing or shutting down growth. Coming out of non-attainment is a long, arduous process. There are problems in other areas of the state as well.

The Idaho Transportation Board allocates funds they receive amounting to about $440 million annually with half coming from federal fuel taxes and the remainder coming from state fuel taxes and registration fees.

The question is how to solve these problems without raising fuel taxes or impacting the general fund. Senator Bunderson explained that

this proposed legislation would go a long way to solving those problems. S 1436 would give the Idaho Transportation Board a limited management tool for providing needed cash flow to pay for road infrastructure projects. Up to 25% of Idaho's annual distribution of federal fuel taxes could be dedicated to pay for qualified road projects. The use of federal fuel tax revenue is authorized under a federal law known as Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicles (GARVEE bonds).

To explain further, a GARVEE bond is a federally-authorized debt-financing instrument that allows the use of the state's future annual apportionments from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to pay debt service and related financing costs. Projects funded with proceeds from a GARVEE bond are subject to the same requirements as other federal aid-projects with the exception of the reimbursement process. The cost reimbursement of projects funded with GARVEE bonds occurs when debt service is due. The GARVEE financing mechanism generates up-front capital for highway projects at competitive rates and enables a state to construct a project earlier than using traditional pay-as-you-go grant resources. With projects in place sooner, costs are lower due to inflation savings, and the public realizes safety and economic benefits.

This legislation would authorize the Idaho Housing and Finance Association (IHFA) to issue bonds approved by the Idaho Transportation Board and to manage the issuance and servicing of the bonds. The ITD Board determined using IHFA would be the least costly option because IHFA already has trained personnel and systems to handle the workload. S 1436 would amend the IHFA enabling statute to authorize its participation. In addition, local highway jurisdictions could, at their discretion, piggyback participation using up to 25% of their federal tax revenues.

When asked about how long legislators have been researching the GARVEE bond issue, Senator Bunderson said the Governor has been considering this issue for over a year. Senator Ingram also indicated some legislators independently considered this type of bonding when they attended the Multi-State Highway Transportation meeting last year. A copy of a white paper dated March 9, 2004, that Senator Bunderson distributed to the Committee is attached to the minutes.

Chairman Ingram indicated there have been ongoing discussions since last fall regarding the possible use of GARVEE bonds. He referred to the following correspondence and meetings (see attached):

1) A letter from Senator Bunderson on September 12, 2003, to Clair Bowman, Executive Director of COMPASS requesting a transportation infrastructure map of the Treasure Valley.

2) A November 28, 2003 letter from Senator Bunderson to Julie Pipal from the Idaho Transportation Department regarding funding alternatives for construction of state roads and bridges necessary for economic development.

3) A Task Force meeting held January 23, 2004, with the following people in attendance: Senators Bunderson and Ingram; Joe Haynes and Byron Keely, LHTAC; Charlie Rountree, Dave Ekern, Steve Bywater, Julie Pipal all from ITD; Tony Poinelli, IAC; Brian Whitlock and Kathy Ruffalo, Governor's Office; Eric Milstead, LSO; Ken Harward and Leon Duce, AIC; Jane Gorsuch, IFA; and Stuart Davis, IAHD.

4) A letter dated January 29, 2004, from Julie Pipal to Byron Keely distributing minutes of the meeting held January 23, 2004.

5) A January 29, 2004 letter from Senator Bunderson to Clair Bowman, Executive Director of COMPASS, regarding long-range vision - transportation infrastructure needs map of the Treasure Valley.

6) January 30, 2004 GARVEE bond meeting

7) February 4, 2004, GARVEE bond meeting

8) February 11, 2004 GARVEE bond meeting

9) March 1, 2004 GARVEE bond meeting

10) March 9, 2004 meeting of the Senate Transportation Committee where S 1436 (GARVEE bond) was discussed in Committee.

These meetings involved professional people who have spent many hours discussing the GARVEE bond issue.

Discussion Senator Keough asked if previous discussions considered increased costs of projects versus cost of the interest on bonds. Senator Bunderson indicated that had been done. Municipal interest is 100 to 200 basis points less than the commercial rate. As an example. the corridor land cost of the Horseshoe Bend Highway construction project increased from $2,000 per acre when it was first decided to $22,000 per acre when the purchase was finally made six years later, an increase of over 1000%.
Continued Testimony Steve Bywater, Deputy Attorney General for the Idaho Transportation Department, pointed out from a legal perspective that they needed to make sure the program was constitutional. The State Constitution does have an exception for bonds issued by independent entities, both corporate and public, which these bonds would be. The next question was, would the transfer of funds from ITD's State Highway Account to the Housing Agency (IHFA) who pays the bonds have constitutional limitations. He retained bond counsel in drafting this legislation and they have worked through the legal issues and are very confident that this legislation would withstand a constitutional challenge. It may require judicial confirmation or a test case but he does not think so.

There is a very simple legal structure that provides for the Federal Highway reimbursement funds to go into the State Highway Account and provide for ongoing appropriation of sufficient funds from the federal portion of funds in the State Highway Account to pay the bonded indebtedness and also a continuing appropriation of the bond proceeds as they are received for the projects the Idaho Transportation Board designates. Then, there is additional language in the Idaho Housing statutes which give them authority to issue transportation bonds.

He said the Idaho Transportation Board must certify by resolution that any given bond issue is within the 25% limitation; i.e., no more than 25% of anticipated federal revenues can be committed to debt service on these bonds. The resolution would be submitted to the Idaho Housing and Finance Association before a bond issue is approved. The 25% figure is based on any consecutive 12-month period in the preceding 24- month period; whatever the lowest figure is, it would be 25% of that amount.

The Idaho Transportation Board is aware of S 1436, has been kept informed of the process and supports it. Chuck Winder, Chairman of the Idaho Transportation Board, served on the Governor's Blue Ribbon Commission that recommended this issue be investigated. Mr. Bywater said GARVEE bonding is a tool the ITD Board would like to use. Senator

Bunderson confirmed that Mr. Winder also told him the ITD Board supports this legislation.

John Sager, Chief Financial Officer of the Idaho Housing and Finance Association, said his office has a great deal of expertise in bond markets. They issue bonds on a regular basis, and in a typical year, IHFA issues between $200 and $300 million in bonds in a number of different issues. IHFA's name is well known in the marketplace and his company is pleased to be asked to lend expertise to this process. In 1997, IHFA was asked to become the statewide issuer for 501(c)(3) non-profit facilities bonds and, since that authority was granted, IHFA has issued approximately 16 separate issues of bonds on behalf of Idaho non-profit entities. Its structure is very similar to the type of conduit financing that is in question with the highway bonds. IHFA was also asked to do agriculture bonds (aggie bonds) a few years ago.

IHFA has an excellent staff that is prepared to do this issuance in a very cost-effective manner. He estimates IHFA's costs would be somewhere less than 5 basis points. His objective would be to simply cover costs, it would not be a profit-making opportunity.

Blake Wade, legal counsel for Idaho Housing and Finance based in Salt Lake City, said his office worked on the first GARVEE bond financing for the state of New Mexico in September, 1998. Since that time about eighteen states have issued this type of financing and several additional states are looking at GARVEE bonding. This is an opportunity for states to leverage federal money. He said federal law was amended in 1995 to allow states to use federal transportation dollars to pay debt service on bonds. Funds have been used for new highway construction as well as for reconstruction projects.
Julie Pipal, Budget, Policy, and Intergovernmental Relations for the Idaho Transportation Department, wanted to clarify that these funds can be used for projects currently eligible for federal funds. There is a process the Transportation Board has to go through in order for a project to become part of the ITD program. Projects would still have to go through development, environmental assessment, and public involvement. Projects would be judged on the basis of the individual project whether or not GARVEE bonding would be the appropriate funding mechanism. The process currently in place to ensure that projects are done according to federal regulations and using public involvement tools would still apply.

Senator Geddes asked if the Idaho Transportation Department would have to increase staff should more construction money be available through GARVEE bonding. Ms. Pipal replied that this type of bonding using only up to 25% of federal funds available would be a tool that ITD could use. The ITD Board would decide priority of funding on handling additional projects as it does now.

Dave Carlson, Director of Public and Government Affairs for AAA Idaho, expressed another perspective on S 1436. AAA is generally supportive of measures to protect, enhance and improve Idaho's transportation infrastructure. But his organization has some questions and concerns. His questions are: 1) Would GARVEE bonds be used for major projects only? 2) Since it appears that authority to target projects rests solely through the ITD Board, does that suggest that the Board can preempt items on the five-year state transportation improvement plan? 3) Is there a project threshold for size of project? 4) What happened to the concept the Blue Ribbon Task Force favored where they wanted a more stable funding structure before GARVEE bonding? They favored the "design-build" concept. 5) If future federal highway funds are committed to bond payments, is Idaho skirting constitutional provisions by using future federal highway allocations for debt service on bonds? 6) How much would be expected to be paid for bond issuance and related costs and what do "related costs" include?

He also expressed the following concerns about S 1436:

1) Instead of taking a measured approach to create bonding authority under ITD, S 1436 circumvents that need by going to IHFA to issue bonds. He wondered if Idaho Code, Section 67-6201 was the proper place to insert such language.

2) The authority to identify projects is granted to the ITD Board, with little explanation of how project selection would work.

3) There is a concern about paving problems away with paper.

4) There is also concern about committing federal dollars to debt service on bonds.

5) The GARVEE bond concept needs to be sold to the state and its citizens and not rushed through at the end of the legislative session.

Mr. Carlson believes the issue has many possibilities that warrant future discussion. He urged the Committee to hold the bill. A copy of his testimony is attached to the minutes.

Chairman Ingram commented that one of the appropriate times to use this bonding concept as a tool would be if a new business were interested in establishing itself in a depressed area of the state where roads were needed. In that circumstance, it would be advantageous to use this method of financing by taking out of future income rather than increasing taxes immediately.
Skip Smyser, an attorney (and former Senator) who is representing the Idaho Trucking Association, thanked Senators Bunderson and Ingram for bringing this legislation forward; the subject does need to be discussed. He reviewed S 1436 just before today's meeting started and he is very concerned because the concept would do away with 114 years of history of pay-as-you-go in the state of Idaho for road construction. The current policy has served Idaho well for many years. This issue should be seriously pondered before a policy change occurs.

In looking at this bill, it is perpetually funded and continuously appropriated. Other bonding proposals come before the Joint Finance and Appropriations Committee (JFAC) and are reviewed annually. There is continuous oversight by the Legislature. With S 1436, the Legislature would not review projects. In the life of a typical bond it could require going to the federal government for three reauthorizations. Twenty-five percent today may or may not be 25% in the future. Idaho has been fortunate to be a donee state where the state receives more money than it generates. Urban states that give Idaho money (through the reauthorization bill) are fighting to keep those funds in their own states. He questioned how that mechanism would actually work if the state were committed to a certain amount of money annually for a long period of time, perhaps 18 years. He wondered how this funding would deal with local governments. There needs to be more information available about the details of how the program would work.

His clients generate a substantial portion of the money being talked about, they are the people paying the bill, and they have not been involved in the discussions. Even though he might be in support of the bill in the future, he is opposed to

S 1436 at this time. With additional input, allowing his association members the opportunity to educate themselves, finding out what the long-term ramifications are, and trying to get a better idea of where this tremendous change in policy is going to lead the state of Idaho, minds could be changed.

He is very supportive of a good road system but truckers are paying the bill and they have not been a part of the process to date. He urged the Committee to hold the bill.

There are serious questions about some definitions in the bill. He also feels there should be parameters regarding the maximum amount that could be bonded with one piece of legislation.

Steve Ahrens, President of the Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry (IACI), said he had not had time to fully understand the issue. When his public affairs committee met earlier in the day, none of the members were familiar with GARVEE bonds; accordingly, there were many questions but no answers. The committee did recognize the significance of what is being proposed in S 1436. They have not had an opportunity to analyze the bill.

While there are attractive parts to the bonding concept, it is a complex process that IACI members do not understand. The IACI Public Affairs Committee members had numerous questions. Who would be responsible for Idaho's bond? How much bonding is safe and secure? Would the impact of that bonding effort be on the bond market in Idaho forever? If you bond to build, how are the projects to be maintained in the future and with what financial resources? What about judicial confirmation? In diverting a portion of federal funds available to the state for transportation needs, how will that affect the other transportation needs in Idaho? His committee does not know the answers and has not had the opportunity to ask questions and have them answered. They need to know what implications the bill will have on the state.

He urged the Committee to hold the bill. IACI would like to participate in future discussions regarding S 1436. The concept may be a very good

idea but IACI currently does not have enough information available to support the legislation.

Senator Bunderson said the issue is on the table and invited the business community and truckers to critically review the information. He feels it is a win-win concept that can improve Idaho roads. He is not opposed to holding the bill in Committee so further discussions can occur. It is a preferable option to gridlock or fuel tax increases.
Motion Senator Geddes moved that S 1436 be held in Committee. Senator Little seconded the motion.
Discussion Senator Little mentioned that through a constitutional amendment Idaho changed the endowment fund from a bond to a stock portfolio and lost $200 million. He feels more time should be spent reviewing the issue which will be a change of policy.
Senator Geddes expressed appreciation to Senators Bunderson and Ingram for bringing the concept to the Committee. Because of the far-reaching effects of this issue, it is worth taking more time to review it.
The motion was approved by voice vote.
S 1422 Regional Public Transportation Authorities; exempt from fuel tax

Roy Eiguren is an attorney in private practice representing ValleyRide which is a regional transportation authority that operates public transportation in Ada and Canyon counties. The purpose of S 1422 is to clarify that regional public transportation authorities are exempt from taxation and to ensure that as political subdivisions of the state of Idaho, regional public transportation authorities are treated like other political subdivisions of the state of Idaho. He explained that S 1422 had a couple of technical errors so it will need to be sent to the amending order.

Motion Senator McWilliams moved that S 1422 be sent to the 14th Order for amendment. The motion was seconded by Senator Marley and approved by voice vote.

DATE: March 11, 2004
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
PLACE: Room 426
MEMBERS PRESENT: Chairman Ingram, Vice Chairman Keough, Senators Geddes, Brandt, Little, Bailey, McWilliams, Marley


Senator Calabretta


Chairman Ingram reviewed the Committee's year-to-date bill status report with Committee members. He indicated that all bills in Committee have been acted on. A copy of the report is attached to the minutes.

Chairman Ingram also distributed copies showing all presentations made to the Committee in 2003 and 2004. The presentations were in addition to all bills discussed and acted on by the Committee. Copies of the reports are attached to the minutes.

Recognition Chairman Ingram thanked Teri Roderick, the high school page assigned to the Transportation Committee for the second half of the Second Regular Session of the 57th Idaho Legislature. She was presented with a letter of recommendation and a gift.
Recognition Vice Chair Keough thanked Chairman Ingram for his service to the Committee. Chairman Ingram is retiring from the Senate this year.
Adjourn The meeting adjourned at 1:35 p.m.