Board to review draft FY16 budget and draft FY15-19 ITIP at June meeting

The transportation board will meet in District 3 June 18-19. Its tour of the region, however, will be combined with the District 4 tour in August. The board will conduct a workshop on Wednesday afternoon.

The draft FY16 budget will be presented. The total estimated revenue available is just over $495 million. Some of the highlights of the proposed budget includes about an 11 percent increase for health insurance; an increase of $41,000 for utilities; $25 million for replacement equipment; and nearly $200,000 for port-of-entry scale operations and maintenance.

Staff also will submit the draft FY15-19 Idaho Transportation Investment Program. In addition to highway and bridge projects, transit and aeronautics projects are included in the program. After the board reviews the draft at the workshop, staff will ask for approval at the business meeting to publish the document for the required 30-day public review and comment period.

Proposed Legislation
Legislative ideas being considered for the 2015 session will be summarized at the June 19 business meeting.
The concepts will be further refined and then presented for formal action by the board next month. The board also will have an opportunity to request proposals to pursue.

The Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) submitted seven of the eight proposals. Some of the ideas relate to commercial driver’s license testing and commercial learner’s permit standards, background checks for county employees accessing DMV systems, making the driver license or identification card the primary proof of legal name needed for titling and registering vehicles, and clean up vehicle title process language. Highways’ staff is also proposing cleaning up a section of Idaho Code related to outdoor advertising and junkyards.

Highway Safety Plan
The draft FY15 Idaho Highway Safety Plan was presented to the board last month for review. In addition to requesting approval of the plan this month, the Office of Highway Safety will give its annual report.

The primary goal of the highway safety program is to eliminate motor vehicle, bicycle, and pedestrian deaths, serious injuries, and economic losses. In 2012, 184 people were killed in traffic crashes in Idaho and almost 11,000 people were injured. These motor vehicle crashes cost Idahoans nearly $2.32 billion. The fatality rate was 1.16 per 100 million annual vehicle miles of travel, which also was the U.S. fatality rate.

Up to three contributing circumstances are possible for each vehicle in a collision. Aggressive driving was a factor in 36 percent of all fatalities, impaired driving was a factor in 40 percent of fatalities, and distracted driving was a factor in 22 percent. Based on observations, 79 percent of Idahoans used seatbelts in 2012. The highest rate was observed in District 3 with 93 percent belted. District 5 recorded the lowest seatbelt usage, 64 percent.

In 2012, motorcycle crashes represented three percent of the total number of crashes, but 12 percent of the total number of fatalities and serious injuries. Almost half of motorcycle crashes involved just the motorcycle; no other vehicles were involved. Thirteen pedestrians and two bicyclists also were killed in traffic crashes, with children ages 4 to 14 accounting for 19 percent of fatalities and injuries in both categories.

Published 6-13-14