BIA could fund road repairs
A memorandum of understanding between the city and the rancheria was passed at the Aug. 6 City Council meeting. The MOU was agreed upon after the rancheria approached city staff to have certain city-owned streets included in the BIA Indian Reservation Roads Program.
“By including certain city streets that serve the rancheria, federal funds can be made available to assist in maintaining those streets,” said City Administrator Rob Hill in his initial report. “These funds would be in addition to any funds the city is currently, or anticipates, receiving.”
Hill also explained the city would not give up any jurisdiction by entering into this agreement. According to the MOU, the rancheria has identified several sections of the roads that it wants included in the program. Those roads include:
•One portion of Ash Street
•One portion of Numa Road
•Two portions of Paiute Lane, including a paved area and a dirt area
•Two portions of Chestnut Street
•Two portions of Skyline Road
•Two portions of Paul Bunyan Road
•One portion of North Roop Street
•One portion of Cherry Terrace
•One portion of Campbell Street
•Two portions of North Weatherlow Street
Hill said he and his staff couldn’t identify any negative impact on the city from entering the MOU.
“We don’t see any downside in doing this,” Hill said. “It doesn’t relinquish any of our rights or ownership to any of our infrastructure.”
Councilmember Joe Franco expressed that he wanted to make sure whatever federal funding came to the city council would only be spent on the listed roads, and not get siphoned off for some other city project.
“For the sake of transparency,” Franco said, “I would like to make sure that we account for that money and spend it on what it needs to be spent on.”
Rancheria representative Jim Mackey explained by including these roads within the BIA’s Indian Reservation Roads inventory system, any time money is earmarked for that system, the BIA would provide that money for roads on the list, which in this case would be city roads. The BIA would provide a certain amount of money to the city, which would in turn handle the repair process.
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