Board to consider request to change Wild Horse scenic byway

The Boundary County Commissioners last fall requested removing the Scenic Byway designation for two portions of the Wild Horse State Scenic Byway on U.S. 95. The transportation board will consider the county’s request at its monthly business meeting Wednesday in the Darrell V Manning Auditorium/Boardroom at Headquarters.

Local officials view the segments in Bonner County – with a total length of about 11 miles – as historical. The active commercial corridor is important to the area’s economic viability. Because of the present and anticipated future activities, the scenic characteristics have lost a lot of their attributes, according to the commissioners.

“De-designation” of the two segments would allow continued local development of the contiguous industrial-commercial corridor. It would not substantially diminish any intrinsic qualities of the scenic byway, nor would it appear to cause negative effects.

Other board agenda items

Annual report on audits
The Office of Internal Review will present its annual report Wednesday.

The report will include an overview of the office, audit and review services provided in 2011, and work planned this year. The office performs independent reviews to assess the effectiveness, compliance and efficiency of department programs, procedures and internal controls. It also conducts reviews of records and financial reports for some third parties contracting and sub-granting with ITD.

Following are some of the recent activities that will be followed up on this year:

  • A joint review was conducted with Ada County Highway District to evaluate its processes and procedures for managing the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and other federal funds.
  • In a review of the Local Highway Technical Assistance Council, recommendations to improve its accounting processes were made.
  • A financial and performance audit of the Division of Aeronautics focused on financial internal controls.

State Institution Road Improvement
Every year the board provides $30,000 for road improvements for other state institutions.

This year, the governor is recommending funding for the Idaho Educational Services for the Deaf and the Blind. Although the cost to resurface the parking lots at the Gooding campus is $70,000, the additional money would come from the Permanent Building Funds.

The board will be asked to approve the transfer of funds for this project. The Division of Public Works will be responsible for administering it.

Additional items
Some of the other items on the board’s agenda include a presentation from Emmett Junior High School’s “Future Cities” team, which won the ITD/LHTAC award; a summary of the recent culture survey; and an overview on the life of a highway construction project, from cradle to grave.

Published 3-9-2012