Master bond schedule presented to Lake Tahoe Community College |

Master bond schedule presented to Lake Tahoe Community College

Jack Barnwell

Lake Tahoe Community College staff presented an initial snapshot of scheduled improvements and additions through voter-approved Measure F funds during a board of trustees meeting on Tuesday.

Beginning in 2015, the college has plans for building upgrades and renovations, with more ambitious projects beginning in 2016, 2017 and 2018.

The beginning stages include planning and design work, according to college vice president Jeff DeFranco.

DeFranco said the first series of bonds to be sold would total $17.5 million.

Voters approved Measure F in November 2014, allowing the college to finance up to $55 million in bonds for college infrastructure improvements.

DeFranco said that while the draft schedule provides a detailed blue print, it wasn’t static.

“This is a dynamic document,” he said, noting there are a few things that can be tweaked.

Project timelines will be scheduled to minimize campus disruptions.

Another portion of the first set of bonds includes $1.46 million to eliminate debt incurred under the construction of the college library. DeFranco said this would be done in July 2016.

Most construction in 2015 would include mostly renovations and upgrades.

Some capital improvements, such as a regional public safety training facility and environmental studies center and modernization of the college’s main building depend on the college’s eligibility for state funding.

DeFranco said if state financing doesn’t come through, construction of those projects might be pushed further down the road.

A $700,000 investment in the California Tahoe Conservancy’s (CTC) South Shore Greenway Shared Use Path project also depends on the receipt of a state grant.

The conservancy, along with the city and college, has provided local match funds in order to secure a $1.9 million grant from California’s Active Transportation Program.

Leon Malmed, a member of the bond’s oversight committee, asked why the college would invest money in the Greenway project.

DeFranco said bike paths have always been part of the bond language. In order to invest Measure F bond money into it, the CTC would need to transfer land to the college’s ownership.

“The benefit we would see is that it would be a good connectivity element that brings people to the core of our campus,” DeFranco said. He added it would also compliment LTCC’s plans for a bicycle and transit center on the campus as part of scheduled improvements.

LTCC President Kindred Murillo said part of the promise to the public was that Measure F funds would be used to leverage more grant money. She added the $700,000 investment in the CTC’s project, if the grant is awarded, is one way to keep project money in the South Shore.

Board member Michelle Sweeney stressed that communication needs to be essential about how the bond money will be spent, especially the planning and environmental reports that come before actual construction.

The board is expected to approve the bond schedule at its June 9 meeting.

Some advanced bond spending was also authorized in a 4-0 vote, including $36,000 for the replacement of a firewall system that would improve LTCC’s network safety.

Other bond-related approvals included a three-party agreement between LTCC, the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, and Hauge Brueck Associates for environmental consultation. Hauge Brueck will conduct studies to meet both state and TRPA requirements for bond-related construction.

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