The Lincoln County Regional Development Authority (LCRDA) met April 29.
After budget discussions, LCRDA Executive Director Jeff Fontaine said that he solicited quotes from three companies that provide informational kiosks. Rock Art, Inc. was the lowest bidder and best value. He said that delivery would occur approximately five to six weeks after the order is placed and that city and county crews will install the kiosks.
A motion was passed to authorize Fontaine to procure five informational kiosks from Rock Art, Inc. at a cost not to exceed $28,540.
Fontaine reported that he contacted True Value Hardware in Caliente for no- mix post concrete and received a quote well within the amount approved in the grant application. Delivery could be made within one week of order. There was discussion in support of obtaining the material and supplies from local businesses. Fontaine said that he will try and procure the auger and auger bits from a local business but that if he is unable to do so, he will need to look outside the county. He also said that after installation is completed, the auger and auger bits will remain the property of LCRDA since they are less than $5,000. A motion was passed to authorize Fontaine to procure the concrete and auger/bits at a cost not exceeding $7,288.
Fontaine then went over the agreement between LCRDA and the Nevada Department of Conservation and Natural Resources for a Nevada Recreational Trails Grant of $39,525 for the Lincoln County Recreational Trails Mapping and Information Program.
Fontaine pointed out LCRDA’s 20 percent match requirement which includes $7,146 for his time and effort to manage the agreement and $2,525 for printing. Fontaine also reminded the board that this is a reimbursable grant. The time frame for reimbursement is 30 to 60 days but the LCRDA has adequate funds in its Capital Projects/Match Fund to cover the costs. A motion was approved for Fontaine to sign the agreement on behalf of LCRDA.
Fontaine then discussed legislative bill SB358, which impacts LCRDA by doubling the state’s renewable portfolio standard to 50 percent by 2030 and requiring 100 percent carbon-free emissions by 2050.
Chairman Dave Hurd asked about Question 6 and how that would impact SB358. Fontaine said that Question 6 will go to the voters a second time to amend the Nevada Constitution in the next general election and, regardless of whether it passes or not, SB358 is still Nevada Law
Dr. Steve Clarke joined the meeting and shared details on the Pinyon Juniper Utilization Concept his company, Quan Verge Inc., is pursuing. His report showed that 47 million acres of pinyon juniper are available for treatment. Hurd suggested that the amount might be closer to 75 million acres.
Clarke said his proposal is a rolling management opportunity on a 20-40-year scale with 200 million metric tons per year feedstock and that technology is available to make valuable chemicals. He went on to say that he would start with wood pellets before beginning scientific work on possible chemical production uses.
Clarke noted the project would reduce the risk to endangered species and of wildfire and that his proposal meets criteria for commercialization from investors looking for carbon neutral. He further stated that southeast Nevada and Lincoln County check all the boxes for using pinyon juniper as a polymer supply chain.
Board member Emilia Cargill asked the next step should be. Clarke said he requires support from the county for a rolling 10-20 year agreement with the BLM. Commissioner Varlin Higbee offered to help. Hurd added that letters of support from county, city and LCRDA might be helpful.
Higbee said that the county is looking at a possible rail spur at Crestline where it owns 40 acres. Clarke said that rail spur would be a big boom as the project scales up.
Fontaine then provided an update on the installation of service club and religious organization signs in Lincoln County by the Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT). He discussed changes regarding the location of signs in Alamo and Panaca and said that NDOT is ready to move forward with the installation of the sign structures by local maintenance crews.
Next, Hurd read a report prepared by Lincoln County Authority of Tourism (LCAT) President Marcia Hurd that announced LCAT will be hosting the OHV Summit in association with the Great Basin Institute Nov. 1-2, 2019. The report further detailed the following:
The first quarterly $50 gas gift card for new sign-ups on the website, sponsored by Sherri Pattinson, will be awarded June 1 (or immediately following Memorial Weekend Celebration).
The second-quarter gift card is being sponsored by Cathedral Gorge Inn Vacation Home.
Dawn Andone of state parks advised that the high water levels mean fishing is fantastic and the parks are “crazy busy.”
She indicated that bike trails at Kershaw-Ryan are rapidly being created. Cathedral Gorge is also putting in additional bike trails and Beaver Dam has new OHV trails.
The Photo Festival will be held on June 21-22. Volunteers were requested to help with setup and teardown.
The report concluded by stating that Trail Cats are making great progress and the team is very active in planning the 2019 Soft Opening Event slated for September 20-21.
Fontaine said the CDBG Advisory Committee approved funding for the second phase of the Caliente Depot restoration project. Information on LCRDA’s new logo contest has been distributed to the high schools and that he had not yet received any submissions.
Hurd said the Loving Care Animal Society was putting up awnings and kennels at their facility.
Fontaine reported that he contacted the Nevada Preservation Foundation and it is checking into options for ADA restrooms so that the Gem can maintain its historic certification.
Fontaine said that the Pinyon Juniper Partnership is winding down and will probably be finished by the end of the year.
In response to a question about federal grants for the Alamo and Panaca Airports, Fontaine said that the Federal Aviation Administration has still not made a decision.
Fontaine also noted that he sent the Caliente Flood Study, prepared by Sunrise Engineering to the Nevada Department of Transportation, and they will be reviewing the study to determine whether they can program a project to address the impacts that the two US 93 bridges have on flooding in Caliente.
Councilman Regen Gubler asked about the multi-use path between the Caliente Depot and Kershaw-Ryan State Park. Fontaine said that the NDOT is working on plans and is going to hold a public workshop in Caliente in mid-June or July to go over the plans. Any concerns can be discussed with the NDOT at that time. During public comment, Ken Dixon asked if there were any details for the multi-use path from the Caliente Depot to Kershaw-Ryan State Park. Fontaine said he would check to see if they had plans available for public distribution to send Dixon prior to NDOT’s public workshop in Caliente.