Wednesday, December 14, 10:00 am

Healdsburg City Council Chambers ~ 401 Grove Street

Sonoma County





A.         CALL TO ORDER


The meeting was called to order at 10:05 am.


Mr. Paul Kelley was introduced as the new incoming Sonoma County Director.  Mr. Kelley is a member of the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors, representing Healdsburg, Cloverdale and Northern Sonoma County.


B.        ROLL CALL


Directors present:  Director Ollivier, Director LaVallee, Director Kelley, Director Simonson, Director Hemphill, Director Wagenet, and Chairman Woolley.

Directors Absent:  None

Also Present:  Executive Director Mitch Stogner, Legal Counsel Christopher Neary and Recording Secretary Heather Newell.




The Agenda was approved with the following changes:


Upon request by Chairman Woolley, item H.6 was pulled from the Agenda.  Upon request from Legal Counsel, item H. 7 was moved until after Closed Session. The Agenda was then approved unanimously (7-0).




            1.                Recognition of Outgoing Board Member David Ripple


Incoming Director, Paul Kelley presented outgoing Director, Dave Ripple with a Resolution from the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors thanking him and acknowledging his countless hours of hard work and devotion to the goal of bringing rail back to the North Coast.




            1.                Approval of Financial Statements – October 2005

                2.                Approval of Minutes – October 2005

            3.                Renewal of On-Call Engineering Contract

                4.                Approval of One Year Lease Extension for Talmage Office Space

                5.                Approval of 2006 NCRA Board Meeting Schedule


Upon request by Director Simonson, Financial Statements will be discussed at the next Finance Committee meeting. Motion to approve Consent Calendar by Director Hemphill, seconded by Director LaVallee, motion carried (7-0).


F.            PUBLIC COMMENT


Mr. Mike Pechner commended Executive Director, Mitch Stogner for his ongoing efforts to obtain  funding for NCRA.  He said that he would like to see all stakeholders attend a meeting and discuss creative ideas to bring back rail service to the North Coast.  He said that he thought that an informal meeting would be more productive than a public meeting.  He said that he would like to see some original thinking and brainstorming to find new ways to accomplish the goals of the NCRA.


Mr. Brian Whipple of Vanango River Corporation read from a statement that he distributed and Staff  entitled “Statement to NCRA Board 14 December 2005.” This document is hereby made part of these minutes by reference.


Mr. Michael Gest of Venango Corporation addressed the Board concerning claims made by NCRA’s former common carrier operator, NWPY.




            1.                Updated Capital Assessment Report – South End – Dave Anderson             


Dave Anderson, NCRA’s on-call engineer, made a PowerPoint presentation to the Board, on the recently completed Updated Capital Assessment for the Russian River division (Willits-Lombard). 




                1.                Election of Chairman - NCRA Board of Directors

                2.                Election of Vice Chairman – NCRA Board of Directors

                3.                Appointment to Committees

                                                a.)  Operator Committee

                                                                1.)  Chairman

                                                                2.)  Vice Chairman

                                                                3.)  Member

                                                b.)  Property Committee                                                            

                                                                1.)  Chairman

                                                                2.)  Vice Chairman

                                                                3.)   Member

                                                c.)  Finance Committee

                                                                1.)  Chairman

                                                                2.)  Vice Chairman

                                                                3.)  Member

                                                d.)                Humboldt Bay Harbor District Joint Advisory Committee

                                                                1.)  Chairman

                                                                2.)  Vice Chairman

                                                                3.)  Member


Nomination to elect Director Hemphill as Chair made by Director LaVallee, seconded by Director Kelley, and carried (7-0).


Nomination to elect Director Wagenet as Vice Chair made by Director Ollivier, seconded by Director LaVallee, and carried (7-0).


Motion to approve the following change to the Committees made by Director Kelley, seconded by Director LaVallee, and carried (7-0).


                        Property Committee members


                                Director Simonson – Chair

                                Director Kelley

                                Director Wagenet


                                Finance Committee members


                                Director LaVallee – Chair

                                Director Kelley

                                Director Simonson


                                Ad Hoc Operator Committee members


                                Chairman Hemphill – Chair

                                Director Wagenet

                                Director Simonson


                                Humboldt Bay Harbor District Joint Advisory Committee


                                Director LaVallee – Chair

                                Director Woolley

                                Director Ollivier


                4.                Consideration and Discussion of Draft Outline of Request for Proposals for Freight and Excursion                                               Service.


No Action


                5.                Consideration and Discussion Peer Review of Proposal Responses


No Action


                6.                Consideration and Discussion of a Memorandum of Understanding with the Redwood Community                            Action Agency to Implement a Rails With Trails Program.


Upon request from Chairman Woolley, this item was deferred to a future   meeting of the Board .



                7.                Consideration and Adoption of California Redwood Settlement Agreement


Moved to after Closed Session.






            1.            Operator Committee Report – Director Hemphill


                Director Hemphill reported to the Board that the Operator Committee met with a potential aggregate                 shipper and discussed their plans as well as NCRA’s timeframe for restoration of service. 





1.                   Executive Director Mitch Stogner


Mr. Stogner reported to the Board that the updated Capital Assessment report will serve as the scope-of-work for purposes of defining projects to be funded under the $8.6 million ISTEA grant. He said that the TCRP applications have been submitted to the CTC staff for review and comment prior to the February 2-3 2006 CTC meeting in Sacramento



2.                Legal Counsel Chris Neary


Mr. Neary introduced an item involving the City of Ukiah, MTA and NCRA for future development of the Ukiah Depot site.  Mr. Neary requested and has received a draft MOU from the City of Ukiah in regards to this proposed project.  He would like the Property Committee to meet in the near future to discuss the proposed MOU.



K.            CLOSED SESSION


            1.                Conference with Legal Counsel – Existing Litigation

                                Government Code 94596.9 (a) (5 cases)


                                a.                NCRA vs. United States Coast Guard, U.S. District Court, Northern District,

                                                Case #. C-05-2739-NJV

                                b.                NCRA vs. Jerico Products, Sonoma County Superior Court Case # SCV235961

                                c.                Jerico Products vs. SMART, U.S. District Court, Northern District, Case # C-05-00210                                                      JSW

                                d.                Michael Meyers vs. NCRA, pending before the Surface Transportation Board, Finance                                                     Docket # 34337

                                e.                Michael Meyers vs. Surface Transportation Board, U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit,                                                   Case # 05-75440



                2.                Conference with Legal Counsel – Anticipated Litigation

                                Government Code Section94596.9 (b)(C) (one case) –


                                a.                Receipt of Claim, or other communication threatening litigation





Board  met with Legal Counsel on 5 items, received information, and gave direction.


Motion to authorize extension of settlement offer to California Redwood made by Director Hemphill, seconded by Director Simonson, and carried (7-0).





            January 11, 2006

                Eureka City Council Chambers

                Humboldt County


N.                ADJOURNMENT


The meting was adjourned at 1:05 pm to the next regularly schedule meeting on January 11, 2006.