Ad Hoc Infrastructure Committee

Wednesday, 9:00 a.m., April 15, 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. FY 98 Status Report
Staff: Dan Patton
Committee Only
3. Other Business  

Summary of Minutes
Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission
Ad Hoc Infrastructure Committee
January 21, 1998

BE IT REMEMBERED that heretofore on the 21st day of January, 1998, there came 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 3:30 p.m., to wit:


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

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 strategic execution of the Capital Program. Mr. Patton explained that the current FY98 Capital Program includes approximately 86 projects funded with $12 million of revenue bonds and approximately 54 non-bondable projects which are funded at $8.1 million from traditional funding sources. He further discussed the number of projects that are either active or inactive. Inactive projects are ones which are funded but have not yet been started. Active projects have been initiated and are in some stage of design or construction. Mr. Patton illustrated the number of projects being designed or proposed to be designed by outsourced Architectural/Engineering firms. He continued with his next slide which illustrated Capital Program Carryover Projects currently totally approximately $22.8 million from prior year capital programs. Of the $22.8 million, the active carryover amount of $19.6 million (approximately 248 projects) includes projects being managed by field staff.

Responding to Commissioner Heath's request for the definition of minor and major repair projects, Mr. Patton explained that minor repair projects include work such as roof patching. Replacing a roof would be a major repair project and would typically require design work, professional review and oversight. Mr. Patton went on to explain that within the Capital Program there are four categories: preventative maintenance, minor repair, major repair, and new development or construction.

Mr. Patton emphasized that projects will be steadily moved from inactive to active status; packaged for better management and outsourcing. Commission Avila asked what is the largest project currently underway. San Jacinto Monument restoration at a cost of $9.6 million being the largest. Mr. Patton explained that our projects may range from $1,000 to $9 million, and for this reason we're looking at packaging projects when possible by regions making bidding more worthwhile to contractors. There was discussion regarding the number of active projects (carryover and FY98 capital program) which are underway and do not lend themselves to be packaged for efficiency.

Commissioner Heath asked how much of the bond money will be used in the next 12-month period emphasizing that the real issue is how we can spend the money within the allowed timeframe. Mr. Patton informed the Commissioners that a draft of the expenditure plan will be finalized soon and presented to the Committee in April. Mr. Patton reminded the Committee that the bond issues will be $12 million, $18 million, $20 million and $10 million over a four year period. Commissioner Heath stressed that we don't want to get behind on spending the dollars and asked Mr. Patton if he had a level of confidence that we will be able to effectively spend the money in a timely manner. Mr. Patton replied positively, and further explained that the first issue of $12 million could be spent over two-years. He reminded them of his last presentation which demonstrated that over the course of the Bond Program, during one 2-year period we will be managing three separate bond issues totally over $20 million. Commissioner Avila asked how much of the $12 million bond issue we plan to spend in the first year. Mr. Patton responded that roughly less than half. Projects will go into the design phase which is about 10-15 percent of the cost and that real progress would be seen in the construction phase. Mr. Patton expressed our goal to begin managing the project efficiently by developing "Evergreen" or "IDC" contracts with consultants to expedite spending the bond money within the timeframe.

Commissioner Heath expressed his concern that we have processes in place to monitor or "audit" construction. Mr. Patton reviewed with the Committee the regional team structure which places the field-based Construction Manager in the position of overseeing and monitoring progress on projects in his region. He further explained that the Project Manager is the team leader and will oversee the project including authority to approve expenditures. Mr. Patton reminded the Commissioners that $4.1 million of non-bond money is for preventative maintenance and minor repairs and is being administered by field staff. While Project Managers are not responsible for oversight of these project, the Infrastructure Administration/ Finance Branch monitors the budget.

Commissioner Burleson interjected the need to not loose site of our environmental policy in the planning and design phase and in the oversight and monitoring of these projects. Commissioner Heath emphasized once again the need to make sure the Agency has appropriate checks and balances established to audit and manage this new initiative. Commissioner Avila added the need to have clear methods for procurement, contract award, level of approval, etc. Mr. Sansom recommended we look at the issues and provide some recommendations at the next meeting. Ms. Burgdorf further explained that due to the requirements on the bond dollars we are required to report to the Public Finance Authority, the Bond Review Board, and the Legislature. Commissioner Avila summed it up by saying that they are like Board of Directors and they are just as guilty as the construction company if things don't go correctly. Commissioner Heath stated that at their board (Commission) level, they don't need to deal with the minutia, but rather have the assurance that Andy and Jayna are confident that appropriate methods are in place.

Concluding the Capital Program briefing, Mr. Patton went on to quickly brief the Committee on the draft Master Planning Process. Mr. Patton explained that the team members were in place and that meetings are scheduled over the next two months to review and revise the process. The final draft plan will be presented to Andy Sansom and the Division Directors for approval. The final process will be presented to the Commission in April.

Commissioner Avila suggested that the consultant for the W/WW assessment also provide a very brief status to the Commissioners in April.


There being no further business, Commissioner Avila adjourned the January 21, 1998 meeting of the Ad Hoc Infrastructure Committee of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.

Committee Agenda Item No. 1
Presenter: Andrew Sansom

Ad Hoc Infrastructure Committee
Chairman's Charges
April 1998

(This item will be an oral presentation.)

Committee Agenda Item No. 2
Presenter: Dan Patton

Ad Hoc Infrastructure Committee
FY 98 Status Report
April 1998

I. Discussion: Dan Patton will provide an overview of the Division's progress in the management of the $21 million FY 98 Capital Program. In addition to demonstrating the division's efficiency and effectiveness, an update of the on-going water/wastewater assessment will also be provided. Members of the Camp, Dresser, McKee assessment team will be on-hand to discuss progress, significant findings, and the Facility Management Information System.

Top of Page