Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Special Districts Caucus - 2019 General Assembly

2019 TMACOG General Assembly
Special Districts and Authorities Caucus
Monday, January 28, 2019
Executive Board Room II, Holiday Inn French Quarter Perrysburg

Call to Order/Welcome/Introductions – Scott Carpenter, Director of Public Relations for Metroparks Toledo and the facilitator of the Special Districts and Authorities Caucus, called the meeting to order and welcomed everyone present. Introductions were made around the room.
Members in attendance included:
·         Joseph Cappel – V.P., Business Development, Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority
·         Scott Carpenter – Director, Public Relations, Metroparks Toledo

·         James Gee – General Manager, TARTA
·         Cheryl Johnson – Chair, Wood County Port Authority
·         Tim Porter – NOPRA, Chairman of Passenger Rail Committee
·         Rex Huffman – General Counsel, Wood County Port Authority
·         Rachel Bach – President/CEO, ConnecToledo/DTID
·         Leonard Michaels – Board Member, NWWSD

TMACOG support personnel included:
·         Lance Dasher – Transportation Planner
·         Kristopher Barnswell – Water Quality Planner
Election of Representatives to the TMACOG Board of Trustees – A motion was made by Rex Huffman and seconded by James Gee to elect the following members who will represent the Special Districts and Authorities Caucus on this year’s Board of Trustees. 
Parks and Recreation Districts Representatives
Trustee:         Neil A. Munger – Director, Wood County Park District
Alternate:      Thomas G. Mackin – Legal Counsel, Lucas Metropolitan Housing Authority
      Other Special Districts and Authorities Representatives
Trustee:         Cheryl Johnson – Wood County Port Authority
Alternate:      Rhonda Sewell – Toledo-Lucas County Public Library
Roundtable Discussion Since the Special District and Authorities Caucus consists of transit, port authorities, library, parks and recreation districts, and water, the group’s discussion had a regional focus on what they have in common and the need for a stronger identity.
Future of Transportation in Northwest Ohio
·         TARTA
o   Creating a downtown hub - currently out for bid; expecting passengers in May; there will be an administrative area; lease out parking space.
o   Van pool program – currently up and running; managed by Enterprise; targeted for people communiting 25-75 miles one-way to work; federal government pays for half and customers pay for other half
o   Technology – buy fair with an app; track bus better with app
o   Grant – autonomous vehicle demonstration; major challenge is designing the route; TARPS and Goodwill building should be included on the route for charging vehicles; there will be two or three vehicles
o   Blue Ribbon Task Force – covered by the county; the goal is for better public transit; committee is established
·         Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority
o   Upgrades to Amtrak station - lights, resurfaced platforms
o   Downtown parking – acquired parking lot of Government One; want to provide at below market rates; offer to employees and commuters
o   Export of soybean to Europe has increased
o   Toledo Express Airport – newer Charlotte route has been successful; developing an industrial park south of airport
·         NOPRA
o   Street cars back in Toledo; opens up for complete streets; concept paper for Summit Street.
o   Street cars generate lots of economic development; downside is the high cost.  Cincinnati overpromised on ridership.
·         ConnecToledo
o   Downtown Toledo transportation study – will be completed end of 2019
o   Downtown parking strategy – lots of parking available, just not at convenient locations; consider changing the policy of on-street parking to increase availability for visitors
Connectivity of Parks – led by Metroparks Toledo
·         Chessie Circle Trail – completed a 1.4 mile section; 55,000 users
·         Estimating users in parks factors 2.3 persons per vehicle.  Comparing laser counter to survey information, survey was within 7,000 users to the laser counters.
·         Secor to Oak Openings connection – 13 miles that will terminate at Wabash-Cannonball Trail; have completed a two mile section (called Moseley Trail); Cannonball Prairie Metropark coming soon
·         East side – connect Maumee Bay State Park to Howard Marsh, Magee Marsh
·         Goal – to have a park within five miles
·         Marina District Park – have funding to complete Phase 1
Creating a Healthier Community
·         Metroparks is completing a survey; Cleveland demonstrated lower heal care expenses with more recreational areas
·         Uptown – use as a laboratory to identify infrastructure needs (sidewalks and streets)
·         Need to look at other funding sources other than transportation
·         TIP funding – Can that approach be replicated in other ways?  Can TMACOG take the lead on grant applications for projects to enhance community?  Should look at what other MPOs are doing in the is respect.
·         Public Relations – need to regionally promote the great work being done in this region; need to get Destination Toledo involved
·         Metroparks has Telling Our Story – wants to use travel blogs to spread the word nationally (USA Today)
·         Stormwater management – what’s being done?

Next Steps – There were no request for action by the caucus and no further business was discussed.

Adjourn – Mr. Carpenter thanked members for attending the caucus and adjourned the meeting.

Toledo Metropolitan Area Council of Governments | www.tmacog.org

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