Supplement Number 1

 

 

 

to the

 

 

 

 

North Coast Railroad Authority

 

The Five-Year Plan

 

 

Dated July 1, 1999

 

 

 

Prepared for the North Coast Railroad Authority

By Max H. Bridges

Executive Director

 

 

 

 

Adopted October 20, 1999
PURPOSE

 

This first supplement to the Business Plan is intended to clarify the NCRA’s intentions with respect to utilization of available funding sources for restoration and rehabilitation of the railway beyond initial reopening. Of particular importance is the utilization of the ISTEA funds for upgrading the Lombard to Willits portion of the railroad.

 

SCOPE

 

The proposed activities are outlined in the attached document entitled “Combined Scope of Work Narrative”.

 

DISTRIBUTION OF FUNDS

 

Expenditures for the proposed items of work from the various sources of funding are described in detail on the attached chart entitled “Combined Scope of Work Summary”. Expenditure of ISTEA funds is now anticipated as follows:

 

 

Fiscal Year 1999-2000

$350,000

Fiscal Year 2000-2001

$1,500,000

Fiscal Year 2001-2002

$3,000,000

Fiscal Year 2002-2003

$3,750,000

 

 

Total

$8,600,000

 

 

SCHEDULE

 

Phase I is well underway with completion from Lombard to Willits expected by early December 1999. Work north of Willits will commence by the end of 1999 and will be completed in the summer of 2000. No ISTEA funds are utilized in this phase.

 

Some of the initial Phase II work was accomplished in conjunction with Phase I activities on the south end and once the railroad resumes service we will be ready to fully implement the remainder of Phase II. Engineering consultant activities could start as early as January 2000 if access to ISTEA and TCI funding is obtained from Caltrans. Completion of Phase II is expected in the spring of 2000.

 

Phase III will follow immediately upon the completion of Phase II and may take through the end of 2000 for final completion.

 

Phase IV will be started in conjunction with some of the Phase III activities and will be accomplished in stages that are yet to be identified. Geographic location and type of work to be accomplished will identify specific projects. The goal is to have projects ready to move into actual construction in Phase V by the spring of 2001.

 

Phase V and VI will follow with a schedule that will be developed as part of the Phase IV activities.

 

CALTRANS CONDITIONS FOR RELEASE OF ISTEA FUNDS

 

In a letter dated July 17, 1998, Caltrans established five conditions that must be met by NCRA prior to Caltrans releasing any state or federal funds under its responsibility. The following is a listing of those conditions and a summary of the progress made by NCRA in providing compliance with them:

 

1.      Resolve audit deficiencies noted by state and federal agencies, specifically Caltrans and those of the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA), including the establishment of a presently operating accounting system.

 

Through the services of a contract CPA all audit deficiencies have been addressed and resolved. A computer accounting system is in place. A recent FEMA appeal determination resulted in some $800,000 in prior audit exceptions being deemed eligible for reimbursement.

 

2.      Identify viable funding sources to pay for identified future maintenance and operating costs.

 

The Business Plan adopted by the NCRA Board addresses all future maintenance and operating needs and the funding required to accomplish them. This activity will be accomplished by contract with the private sector operator, Rail-Ways, Inc.

 

3.      Provide an independent analysis of a Rail-Ways, Inc. business plan for economic viability.

 

The Business Plan provides this analysis.

 

4.      Develop a viable plan to achieve compliance with all applicable environmental orders and regulations.

 

The Business Plan addresses all known environmental issues and the steps being taken to ensure compliance with all applicable requirements. Rail-Ways has hired an Environmental Compliance Officer who is responsible for this activity.

 

5.      Develop a viable plan for compliance with the Federal Railroad Authority’s (FRA) compliance orders.

 

Rail-Ways has employed staff with the experience and expertise to address the needs in this area and they are working with FRA, California PUC, and contractors to complete the necessary work. NCRA has contracted with Boyle Engineering to provide additional project oversight.