NEW YORK STATE COUNTY HIGHWAY SUPERINTENDENTS ASSOCIATION THE WAY WE WERE THE WAY WE ARE NOW January, 2013 Albany, New York
Understand the history and status of current funding programs. Gain an understanding of Forward Four and what it means toyour 20% share of Federal Aid Projects. Understand how declining tax revenues and New York State’s2% Tax Cap are impacting County budgets. Learn how other County Highway Departments are overcomingthe challenges faced in today’s economic and politicalenvironments.
There was a time that many of us would have loved to work for Countygovernment.There was a time when working for the County government meant being muchappreciated and duly rewarded during a satisfying career.It was also a pretty sweet deal after retirement, too.It was soul-satisfying work that involved helping provide programs and servicesto the County’s residents, along with all the other people who depend on thevarious County departments.When your days of service were over, you could look forward to a nice payoff onthe back end that included the ability to retire at an age when you could stillenjoy the fruits of your labor. Modified from Eugene Kane, 11/19/2012, Journal Sentinel, Milwaukee, Wisconsin - http://www.jsonline.com/news/milwaukee/county-workers-say-rules-attitudes-are-changing-th340oi-134187373.html
Today there are fewer opportunities for employment in County government.It is becoming more difficult to attract and retain quality people.There is less job security than ever before.Employee compensation and benefits are being reduced.There is less money available for staff development and training.Job satisfaction is declining for many County workers.Retirement benefits are being reduced.We are struggling to keep our highways and bridges in good repair.
From 1950 until 2000, sixty-four percent of the population worked, owned theirhomes and properties, and paid property taxes.
Since 2000, the percentage of people working has declined to fifty-eight percent.Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:US_employment_1995-2012.png
Fewer people working means more people relying on the government. Today in New York State, nine State mandates consume ninety percent of the County property tax levy: • Medicaid • Public Assistance/Safety Net • Child Welfare • Preschool Special Education • Early Intervention • Indigent Defense • Probation • Youth Detention • PensionsSource: New York State Association of Counties
So when you do the math, just 10 percent of the tax levy is leftfor other “Discretionary Spending”:• Roads• Bridges• Public buildings• Parks and trails• Waste and refuse• Other infrastructure• Cornell Cooperative Extension• Historical Societies• Libraries• Soil and Water Conservation Districts• Economic Development Agencies
The Consolidated Local Street and Highway Improvement Program (CHIPS)was established by the Legislature in 1981. The applicable rules for the Programare contained in Section 10-c of the State Highway Law.
The Marchiselli or Municipal Streets and Highways Program partially fundsthe local match for Federal Aid projects. Marchiselli typically covers 75% of the local matching share (20%) or 15% of a Federal Aid project. It is authorized under 80-b, 1991 New York State Highway Laws.
In May of 2012 the NYSDOT formalized a policy that focuses on preservation andsafety of existing transportation infrastructure. The Comprehensive Policy Update isknown as “Forward Four”. Forward Four has the following four principals: • Preservation First; • System Not Projects; • Maximize Return on Investment, and • Make it Sustainable
This is policy is a shift from the “Build New” and “Worst First” policies of the pastand is already beginning to impact the way we plan our projects:On October 17, 2012 NYSDOT issued Engineering Bulletin 12-042, which isintended to realign project eligibility criteria for Marchiselli funds with the assetmanagement-based preservation strategies.These changes are now also incorporated into chapters 3 & 4 of the Proceduresfor Locally Administered Federal Aid Projects (PLAFAP) manual
The new Federal transportation authorization “Moving Ahead for Progress in the21st Century” or MAP 21” is not yet well understood. The new authorization doesnot significantly increase Federal Aid for transportation infrastructure and theresources for locally administered projects will continue to fall short of our needs.New York State’s CHIPs andMarchiselli programs have beenfrozen for years at $363 Millionand $39 million, respectively.What is worse, the mechanisms forfunding these programs are notsustainable.
For many years, the price and availability of petroleum products, includinggasoline, diesel fuel and asphalt was not a significant concern. .
The price of gasoline is near historic high points and is likely to stay high or increase.Source: http://gasbuddy.com/gb_retail_price_chart.aspx
The price of diesel is near historic high points and is likely to increase.Source: http://blog.transplace.com/archive/tags/Diesel%20fuel%20prices/default.aspx
Effective on or after Jan. 1, 2012, the Property Tax Cap Legislation limits theannual growth of property taxes levied by local governments to 2 percent or therate of inflation, whichever is less.The cap also applies to theproperty tax levies of schooldistricts and special districtslike fire departments, libraries,sewer and water systems.The Property Tax CapLegislation (Laws of NewYork, 2011, Chapter 97 –Part A) is actually anamendment to GeneralMunicipal Law. Source: http://www.empirecenter.org/Special-Reports/2011/11/proptaxcapguide113011.cfm
County Highway Departments are between a Rock and a Hard Place. •Unfunded Mandates •Increasing Costs •Tax Cap •Aging Infrastructure •Decreasing Tax Base •Changes in Funding Programs and PoliciesJust 13 of the 57 Counties in New York State have passed laws allowingthem to exceed the tax cap. Source: New York State Association of Counties 12/19/12
Our next two speakers will share with you the challenges theyhave faced and the solutions they have developed to overcomethose challenges.Chemung CountyEssex County
Chemung County maintains 250 miles of County Highways and 148 County & Town Bridges.
The primary driver for change at the Chemung County DPW has been a shrinkingbudget. Our budget is12% less now than it was in 2008. Chemung County DPW Budget 9 8 7Budget in $Millions 6 5 4 3 2 1 0 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 Year
Chemung County DPW Labor 60 50 Full-Time Employees 40 30 20 10 0 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 YearIn response to budget reductions, we have:• Reduced our workforce by 23% from 48 in 2006 to 37 in 2012;• Employ 14 seasonal workers in summer as laborers;• Employ 2 seasonal employees in winter with CDLs:• We still use two operators per truck; we plan to go to one person plowing inthe future.
Better Management of Assets:• Road scoring and traffic counts are used to justify roadway projects;• Removed or closed 3 bridges from 2008 to 2012: • City of Elmira Bridge – Saved $3 million; • Kahler Road Bridge - Saved $2.5-3 million; • Cemetery Hill Road Bridge – Saved 0.5 million.• Many of our salt trucks have ground speed indexed spreaders and GPS to trackwhere and how much salt is applied - We also use this technology on the sweepers;• We use carbide edges on our plows. They are more expensive but they last muchlonger; however, they can damage roads.• A new fueling facility that fuels vehicles approximately 4x faster - Saves down-time.
Rising equipment prices have forced us to be creative and share the costwith other agencies through Equipment Ownership Agreements and Cross-Jurisdictional Agreements:• Joint ownership of a Case 946G Grader ($250,000) - Chemung County, Townand Village of Horseheads share 70/15/15 based on historical use;• Steuben County recently purchased a Road Reclaimer. Chemung County willsign an agreement to pay for its use - less than buying and less than renting froman equipment dealer;• Chemung County and the City of Elmira use the NYSDOT Region 6 UnderBridge Inspection Unit (UBIU) to address bridge flags & repairs flags;• NYSDOT Region 6 uses the County’s excavator and sweeper and the City ofElmira’s paver;• NYSDOT Region 6 applies herbicide to Chemung County guide rail.
Chemung County DPW crews constructed County Route 87 in the Town of BigFlats. • This was an economic development project for the Chemung County IDA - 0.16 miles of road were built to provide access for a relocated airplane museum; • Chemung County Soil & Water provided a dozer and rough-in of a detention basin; • The County’s scope of work for this project included construction. (The IDA paid for design.)In the past we would have publicly bid the work; however, we estimate that wesaved approximately 30% on the construction cost by using in-house labor andequipment.
Chemung County DPW crews demolished the Kahler Road Bridge. • The bridge was eliminated because it was redundant; • The County’s scope of work included engineering, demolition and restoration; • No state or federal money involved; • Our crews are HAZWOPER trained and monitored for lead exposure.In the past we would have publicly bid this demolition project; however, we estimatethat we saved approximately 40% by using in-house labor and equipment.
Combined City of Elmira and Chemung County crews construct a truck parking lot. • The City and County’s scope of work included engineering, survey, environmental, and construction, and inspection. • This was a federal aid project • We utilized recycled materials (millings) for sub- base and a virgin cold mix base and hot-mix binder for the pavement systemIn the past we would have used a design consultant and publicly bid the work;however, we estimate that we saved approximately 50% by using in-house laborand equipment.
Other projects designed and built with in-house labor and equipmentinclude:• Locally funded bridge on Wyncoop Road - County DPW provided all services from designthrough construction. Approximately 50% savings over outsourcing design and construction.• Locally funded culvert replacement - County DPW provided all services from designthrough construction. Approximately 50% savings over outsourcing design and construction.• Maple Avenue Paving Project - City of Elmira and Chemung County provided all services.Utilized a City owned paver and County owned FlowBoys. 32% savings over outsourcingdesign and construction.
Developing the skill sets of our County workforce allows us toundertake challenging projects in-house at considerable savings. • We have a robust training program with a strong focus on cross- training: • Hazwoper training • MSHA training (we have a gravel pit) • Tree assessment • Training for equipment operation is primarily “On The Job” • We also send staff to other Counties to learn: • Construction of GRS Bridges in St. Lawrence County • Pre-casting of box culverts in Steuben County
Our investment/sharing in equipment gives us the tools we need to doour projects for less cost: • Scheduling is critical– Our superintendents lay out the whole construction season and develop a fluid, living document. • We now have a Shared Services Coordinator: • Creates performance metrics; • Provides info to public officials; • Takes the lead on asset management and road protection plans.
In summary: • It is important to be open to new ideas and new ways of doing things; • Learn from your neighbors – NYSCHSA is a great organization for this; • Busy guys working on challenging projects are easier to manage than bored, unchallenged guys who might be getting into trouble – up to a point: • You have to have the right people in the right places; • Not everyone is able to handle an increased work load and a fast- paced work environment.
Essex County has 357 miles of highway…and 133 bridges.
DPW also maintains 70 building aged from 1828 to 2009.Vehicle Maintenance Facilityservicing over 300 vehicles.
14 landfill compaction sites with $2 million in transportation equipment.County owned fairgrounds withmunicipal water and sewer.
Veterans Cemetery.Safety and health for all 600County Employees.
There is a 15% drop in the budget since 2009 Essex County DPW Budget 12.000000 10.000000Budget in $Millions 8.000000 6.000000 4.000000 2.000000 0.000000 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 Year
2013 BudgetMaterials cut for the second year. 30% in 2012 and 15 % in 2013Equipment purchases cut to zero for the second year.12% of the work force lost since 2011.
How we adjusted1. More work performed in house; road construction, paving, bridge building, bridge maintenance. Lowers capital cost. Perform less maintenance decreasing infrastructure life.
Innovative Capital Projects1. Used bridge spans.2. Combine County forces with Contracted services to complete projects.
Shared Services1. Towns perform snow and ice control on 85% of County Highways by lump sum contract.2. Utilize Towns for minor maintenance; mowing, brooming, ditching.3. Contract specialized tasks; guide rail, concrete repair, roof repair.
Equipment1. Bid new or used equipment.2. Pool equipment throughout the county; State, County, Town and Village
Funding1. Bond bridges2. Utilize all of CHIPS funds for highway materials.3. Recycle materials when possible; Inverset bridges, scrap metal.
Versatile Labor Force1. All County highway crews are trained to perform all tasks.2. All DPW employees are expected to work interdivisional; Buildings and Ground, Highway, Safety and Health, Clerical, Engineering will chip in when needed.3. Make our own Storm water prevention products: sediment traps, waddles.
Summary• Budgets are shrinking and cost are rising.• More work in house.• Innovative capital projects.• Shared services.• Options in equipment purchase.• Creative funding.• Versatile labor force.
Warren County •Est. 1813 •65,723 Residents •869 sq mi •93% in Adirondack Park “These fellows say we wont fight! By Heaven, I hope I shall die up to my knees in blood!" MG Joseph Warren Battle of Bunker Hill, 1775
Warren County Department of Public Works Parks, Recreation & Railroad Airport •14 mi Bikepath, 40 mi RR •FAA Part 139 Airport •Fish Hatchery, Fairgrounds •5,000 and 4,000 foot runways •UpYonda Educational Center Buildings and Grounds •Day Maintenance Crew •Night CleanersEngineering Highways & Bridges•Engineering, CM and Project Admin •247 centerline miles•Grant and Local Projects •60 Highway Bridges
Warren County DPW Total Expense $18,000,000 $16,000,000 $14,000,000 $12,000,000 $10,000,000 $8,000,000 $6,000,000 $4,000,000 $2,000,000 $- 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 (Budgeted) Budget Year
Warren County Full Time Positions 140 135 136 130 125 120 115 110 105 107 100 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 Budget Year •21% Reduction in Full Time Positions since 2006
Warren County Managing With Fewer Personnel: • Sharing manpower between DPW Divisions • Temporary Labor – 4 Seasonal hires in Highway Division, 1 part-time cleaner (also good way to recruit and test new hires) • Set and enforce standards…disciplinary follow-thru (some of the cuts were poor performers) • Department Reorganization and Consolidation of Duties…update CS Titles and create relevant positions (Deleted 35 Positions, Created 6 New) • One Person Plowing while on OT
Warren County Managing With Less Project Funding: • Engineering Centric…virtually all repair/improvement work is directed/managed by Engineering Division - Less waste, better results, right priorities • Not more, but better quality work… - Crew Training…paving schools - Better survey controls • More in-house work - Superstructure Replacements - County Paving Crew!! Can’t do without it. - Bridge Repair and Bridge Maint/washing
Warren County Diamond Point Rd, I-87 Exit 23 - Quality mill & fill project, complex M&PT…county paving crew rebates are good or they get redone.
Warren County - County crews fabricated a 60 ft. temp bridge with 4 beams salvaged from a Fed Aid bridge replacement project. Deck is panelized timber (2X8X16 PT on edge).
Warren County Chatiemac Rd. Bridge - County crews poured new stub abutments and placed this 70’ US Bridge. Deck was LW concrete in deck pans with asphalt wearing surface.
Warren County What’s the next step for us in 2013?: • Pavement Density Testing - Working on roller patterns for better pavement • Another in-house bridge replacement - Back to Sodom Rd Bridge • County Temp Bridge to be used on Fed Aid Project - will result in credit for in-kind services • Keep beating the drum of pavement grades, bridge ratings, and est. Service Life-Miles…deferred projects cost more in the end.