Ad Hoc Infrastructure Committee

Wednesday, 9:00 a.m., January 21, 1998

Commission Hearing Room
4200 Smith School Road
Austin, TX 78744
Subject Public Hearing
Agenda Item No.
  Approval of the Committee Minutes from the previous meeting.  
  Summary of Minutes  
1. Chairman's Charges (Oral Presentation) Committee Only
2. Capital Program Status
Staff: Dan Patton
Committee Only
3. Revised Master Plan Process
Staff: Dan Patton
Committee Only
4. Other Business  

Summary of Minutes
Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission
Ad Hoc Infrastructure Committee
November 5, 1997

BE IT REMEMBERED that heretofore on the 5th day of November, 1997, there came on to be heard matters under the regulatory authority of the Parks and Wildlife Commission of Texas, in the Commission Hearing Room of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Headquarters complex, Austin, Travis County, Texas beginning at 11:20 a.m., to wit:


John Avila, Jr., Chair
Lee M. Bass
Dick Heath
Ray Clymer
Mickey Burleson
Nolan Ryan
Ernest Angelo, Jr.
Susan Howard-Chrane


Andrew Sansom, Executive Director, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, read the opening statement into the record.


Mr. Patton, Director of the Infrastructure Division, briefed the Committee on the status of Chairman's charges. The revised Capital Program process and project prioritization will be presented at the Committee briefing in April, 1998. The status of the communication strategy, water/wastewater assessment and Infrastructure's critical success factors were discussed.

Mr. Patton presented the Critical Success Factors developed to measure and evaluate the Division's performance and success toward reducing the critical repair backlog. He explained that the purpose was to adopt and maintain the best business practices, establish baselines, track trends, provide quarterly and annual reporting, and ensure quality and continuous improvement.

Mr. Patton presented a document which illustrated Strategic Information and four primary Critical Success Factors. The items included in the Strategic Information consisted of $14 million existing workload, $20 million '98 capital program by project type, by Division, and by funding source, and finally, a four-year critical repairs strategy for expending the $60 million bond issue. Mr. Patton clarified that of the $20 million '98 capital program, $12 million are bond proceeds. He explained to Commissioner Heath and the other Commissioners that the actual expenditure of bond dollars will be tracked as a critical success measure of our productivity and efficiency and will be reported on a bi-annual basis. Commissioner Burleson raised the issue that in the past, it has been difficult to expend capital dollars efficiently because of bogged down processes. Mr. Patton explained that the Strategic Plan, which is in the developmental stages, will describe steps being taken to refine some of these processes. He further explained that one immediate step being taken is shifting the administration of contracting to the Infrastructure Division. In addition, greater emphasis will be placed on outsourcing more A/E services.

The Critical Success Factors were explained by Mr. Patton beginning with the Bond Expenditure Status which tracks expenditures per month and for every 6-month arbitrage period. The Backlog Reduction CSF shows the reduction in maintenance and repair backlog by total dollars. Mr. Patton explained that while the critical repair backlog will be reduced by $60 million by the year 2002, through streamlining processes and through a maintenance program, the non-critical repairs will be reduced over time as well. Commissioner Burleson asked if each year non-critical repair needs will be added to the existing list. Mr. Patton responded that due to emergencies and other health and safety issues, he projects an additional $5 million in new non-critical needs over the next five years. Mr. Patton went on to address the next Critical Success Factor, Project Maintenance Investment which demonstrates the impact, by showing potential deferred costs, of distributing preventative maintenance funds. Commissioner Avila posed the question as to where the additional maintenance funding would come. Ms. Burgdorf explained that over the biennium, the Legislature has provided general revenue to be used toward existing debt service for prior bond programs which will subsequently free up $4.1 million in park Fund 64 to be used toward non-bondable repairs and a maintenance program. There was discussion regarding the actual amount needed in maintenance funds in order to remain caught up with maintenance needs; Mr. Sansom referred to the ITF Report which stated $3 million per year. Mr. Patton stated that in addition to the $3 million per year, he has estimated about $500,000 per year to cover additional costs such as additional backlog. Commissioner Heath raised his concern that the need for additional funding for new backlog be more clearly and understandably demonstrated in order to go to legislators for additional maintenance funding. Mr. Patton addressed the last Critical Success Factor, Production Efficiency. He explained that more emphasis was going to be placed on outsourcing architectural/engineering services. Commissioner Heath requested clarification of A/E fees; whether the ITF Report included the costs associated with outsourcing A/E services in the $160 million backlog. Mr. McCarty confirmed that A/E costs were included in the ITF Report. Commissioner Heath pointed out that care should be taken in demonstrating A/E fees so as not to appear that it is above and beyond the $60 million allocated by the Legislature or the $160 million in backlog.

Chairman Bass mentioned that developing a timeline in regard to getting projects underway would be helpful. He further expressed that a timeline would allow us to monitor whether we are on schedule or falling behind. Mr. Patton informed Chairman Bass that timelines were being developed internally as performance measures tied to critical success factors. Mr. Patton explained that these internal performance measures are to be reported to the Commission and through the Critical Success Factors to the Legislature. Chairman Avila suggested that we include this measure with the CSFs.

Commissioner Heath asked what the proposed methodology is for prioritizing projects. Mr. Patton described a proposed ranking system which will identify and prioritize projects based on established criteria to be recommended to the Commission for approval. Commissioner Heath pointed out that no formal process has been approved by the Commission as yet. Commissioner Avila confirmed that an assessment which includes an automated prioritization process is being development by an independent assessment and that Commissioners guidance on methodology and criteria will be sought. Ms. Burgdorf clarified that the current FY98 capital program was approved by the Commission in August. Mr. Sansom and Mr. Patton explained that the prioritization process is long-term, beyond FY98. Lastly, Mr. Patton shared with the Committee a list of projects by legislative district explaining that any number of queries by district, project type, allocation, etc. can be produced.

Mr. Patton briefly explained the selection process for the Water/Wastewater Assessment RFP and introduced the selected consultant, Camp, Dresser, and McKee (CDM). He went on to state that at the next Commission briefing in January, he will be present the Strategic Plan. Commissioner Avila requested that the scope of services be explained for the other Commissioners.

Commissioner Howard-Chrane asked about measures being taken on repairs of historical structures. Mr. Sansom suggested that at the next few briefings the existing skill capacity of some of our in-house staff be shared with the Commissioners. Commissioner Burleson asked about our procedures for standardization. Mr. Patton informed her that we have begun the process of standardizing design for restrooms or roofing materials for residences, etc. Commissioner Burleson asked about being briefed on this and Mr. Patton confirmed that, if requested, specific issues from the Strategic Plan could be reported to the Committee. Mr. Patton introduced Lydia Saldaña, Director of Communications, to address the Communication Strategy for Infrastructure Repairs.

Ms. Saldaña explained that the goal is to communicate to selected audiences the message that TPW is spending $60 million in revenue bonds approved by the legislature to make critical repairs to Parks and Wildlife facilities statewide. Target audiences being park users and policy makers. Ms. Saldaña further stated that the message can be communicated through park signage, news media, and TPW communications vehicles. The infrastructure message will be included in the 75th anniversary plan. A tactic is signage at the park which explains the problem and what is being done about it. A second tactic is to use our communication tools; Internet, our magazine, video news release, radio series, information packages, etc.. Keeping legislators involved through media events, ground breakings, ribbon cuttings, etc., as appropriate. A slogan is another tactic and the one selected is "Fixin it up right. Now." Commissioner Bass cautioned about creating unrealistic expectations by the public. Ms. Saldaña explained that a sign with the slogan will be used on projects which are underway and that she would be very conscious of that issue. Commissioner Avila suggested that industry-related publications be used to communicate the message.


There being no further business, Commissioner Avila adjourned the November 5, 1997 meeting of the Ad Hoc Infrastructure Committee of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.

Committee Agenda Item No. 1
Presenter: Dan Patton

Ad Hoc Infrastructure Committee
Chairman's Charges
January 1998

(This item will be an oral presentation.)

Committee Agenda Item No. 2
Presenter: Dan Patton

Ad Hoc Infrastructure Committee
Capital Program Status
January 1998

I. DISCUSSION: Overview significant on-going Capital Projects that would be of interest to the Commission. We will briefly discuss current schedules, cost, and partnership issues as they pertain to each project. Projects to be discussed include San Jacinto, Washington-on- the-Brazos, Nimitz Museum, and Government Canyon.

Committee Agenda Item No. 3
Presenter: Dan Patton

Ad Hoc Infrastructure Committee
Revised Master Plan Process
January 1998

I. DISCUSSION: As presented in the last Commission Hearing, we are revising the Master Planning process to ensure more timely financial analysis, public input, and Commission decision-making. We will provide an overview of our efforts to involve the other division representatives, Commissioners, and constituents. We will then summarize this information into a timeline to ensure adequate planning is achieved, so that we can present our final recommendation to the Commission in April.

Attachment - 1

1. Exhibit A - Overview of Revised Master Plan Process

(Exhibit A - Available upon request.)

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