​Ongoing Questions About This Project

  • What else has been done to try and get this project done without a toll?

    • Answered with standard answer “TXDOT doesn’t have money, we are the little fish in a big pond, 20 years until there are funds, etc.” Still no documentation showing these actions, only word of mouth.

 

  • Why was this project ONLY submitted to the AAMPO in 2007 and 2013? Why wasn’t it submitted in other years? If it was so important it should have been submitted yearly.

    • Never answered. This has been asked but the response has never addressed this question.

 

  • Why were the AAMPO Projected 2020 traffic counts for Cibolo (as presented at the 12/13/16 meeting by TTC) so wrong? Who in the City is responsible for attending the MPO numbers/ Who is responsible for making sure that Cibolo, its citizens and our needs are represented accurately? What traffic counts are we providing to prospective commercial developers if those numbers were so wrong?

    • This has been asked but the response has never addressed this question. Only response (partial) -  TXDOT does traffic counts.

 

  • Note: Every letter of support for this project ONLY includes support of the Cibolo Parkway, not the Cibolo Expressway (letters from Cibolo EDC, The Chamber, NE Partnership, Blue Ribbon Committee). In fact, Cibolo Resolution 1544 (approved December 13, 2016) only gave the City Manager permission to negotiate with TTC on a Development Agreement for the Cibolo Parkway project, and to submit a formal request to TXDOT to enter into an MOU with TTC related to the proposed Cibolo Parkway Project. There is no mention of the express lanes. The Development Agreement makes it clear that these are two separate projects (Cibolo Parkway and Cibolo Expressway) and defines them as separate.

For Document, Click Here. 

  • Never answered. This has been asked but the response has never addressed this question.

 

 

  • Why was the development agreement released to the public before being signed, as promised?

    • City response “ No one asked” and “It has proprietary information” (it doesn’t).

    • Crew response “We don’t have to. Big projects never release stuff before it’s signed” (Not true)

 

  • Why was the vote on the development agreement (Feb. 28) not delayed when the City Attorney couldn’t answer Jay’s question about releasing the agreement to the public?

    • Not answered.

 

  • When reviewing the Feb. 28th meeting it seemed as though this was the first time council was made aware that the agreement was binding. Throughout the process citizens were told that the City could back out at any time, and that a feasibility study (described as full traffic counts, route, etc.) would be done before a final agreement was made. Who instructed Council to sign this agreement without a feasibility study? What changed between the public hearings and February?

    • Not answered.

 

  • Order vs. Referendum – why was the City Attorney not asked again to answer the question about Order vs. referendum (asked by Mayor Dunn) when he didn’t answer it?

    • Not answered. However, the amendments were passed via ordinance, so maybe council realized an order should not be used?

 

  • When was Schertz included in the project?

    • Not really answered but has been alluded to. No proof of meetings provided.

 

  • What is the meeting from 11/16/16 with San Marcos about?

    • We did a records request for all meetings regarding the toll road and this meeting was on the list. No answer.

 

  • ANSWERED WITH AMENDMENTS SIGNED MAY 10TH. IN addition to the lack of protections for the City of Cibolo, the development agreement has several inconsistencies and contradictions. For example, during the February 28th meeting an amendment was added guaranteeing the construction of the express lanes at the same time as the TXDOT improvements. There are 3 places in the agreement where wording in the same paragraph contradicts this. Additionally, this same section also says the express lanes will begin construction after the City’s acceptance of FM 1103 from TXDOT. Example:

“Cibolo Turnpike proposes to add two express lanes within the median, a distance of approximately 4 miles the “Cibolo Expressway.” The Cibolo Expressway project would begin after the completion of the TXDOT FM 1103 improvements, and the City’s acceptance of FM 1103 from TXDOT. The Cibolo Expressway will be funded solely by Cibolo Turnpike; and, as provided herein, the construction of the Cibolo Expressway shall be coordinated with TXDOT so that the construction of the express lanes shall occur simultaneously with the construction of the proposed TXDOT improvements in order to minimize traffic disruption on FM 1103.”

  • ANSWERED WITH AMENDMENTS SIGNED MAY 10TH. The express lanes are described as “two lanes in the median extending 4 miles.” When questioned, council has repeatedly told us we are uninformed and that “despite what the development agreement may say,” the express lanes would only be the overpasses, and that the agreement would be changed to reflect this. Unfortunately, based on Page 25, Section 13.13 of the development agreement you reviewed and signed this isn’t possible (see below). How is the city proposing to change a legally binding agreement?

“Prior Agreements Superseded.  This Agreement supersedes any prior understanding or written or oral agreements between City or Cibolo Turnpike respecting the within subject matter, and contains the entire understanding between the parties with respect thereto.  There are no oral agreements between City and Cibolo Turnpike.”

  • What will happen to the sidewalks, medians, center turn lanes, and bike paths if the express lanes do extend the length of 1103? These specific improvements are listed as a part of the TXDOT improvements in the Development Agreement but their fate isn’t clear.

    • Partially answered – changing the agreement to reflect only 3 overpasses saves some of this.

 

  • The development agreement states that reimbursement will be given (see below). However, throughout the contract it indicates that the City is required to provide staff assistance, Legal, engineering and public relations when it comes to the development of the Parkway.   These requirements will cost a lot more than just $15,000 throughout the project. I understand additional reimbursement will be given for the other fees but the language is specific when it comes to $15,000 for staff time. How much of this has already been used? What of the additional costs over this amount?

“Reimbursement shall be made to the City for staff time devoted to bringing the project to fruition and consultant fees the City incurs directly related to the project, which shall include: an amount equal to $15,000.00 to compensate the City for staff time, and, reimbursement for legal, engineering and public relations consultant fees actually expended or incurred by the City, plus interest at a rate not to exceed 12% per annum.”

  • Not answered.

 

  • Tax benefits that will be required by the City per the development agreement (See Below). This section appears to force Cibolo into approving any structural or contractual arrangements related to the toll road project if Cibolo Turnpike deems it beneficial for their company/investors. There are no protections for citizens in this section. The tax benefits would go to the toll company. We were told there would be no TIRZ and no cost to taxpayers, so why was this included in the agreement?

Section 6.2 Tax Benefits.  If  Cibolo  Turnpike  reasonably  determines  that (commercially reasonable) structural or contractual arrangements related to the Project will maximize the availability of tax or other state or federal government benefits, City shall approve such structural or contractual arrangements and take such other actions as are necessary to maximize the availability of such benefits, including, without limitation City’s actions in  entering into an operating or similar agreement for any future portion of the Project to Cibolo Turnpike, or its affiliate or designee to obtain the benefits of depreciation deductions, tax credits or similar tax benefits.

  • Not answered.

  • The contract states that the City will be required to pay for all ingress and egress connections that connect to the Toll Road.  So for instance if the toll exit connects to a city road they have to pay to connect them. This would also be taxpayer funds, correct?  

    • Not answered.

 

  • The cost to the City if it goes into Default is astronomical. The contract was written by TTC and only offers minimal protections for the city. Per the contract, Cibolo would have to pay for the studies and any expense that the Toll company may have incurred up to that point. Does Cibolo have a plan to pay these fees?

    • Not answered. Partially answered (maybe?) in a council meeting – city stated it would come out of the city’s general operating budget.

 

  • Who recommended the attorneys who reviewed the development agreement? Who sat in on meetings to review the agreement? Why were so many obvious errors missed?

    • Partially answered. We’ve been told additional attorneys were brought in. One attorney was, but no answer on who recommended him (Clay Binford). TTC says they did not provide that recommendation. The other attorney to review it was the City attorney.

 

  • Who advised Council that a public vote wasn’t necessary to enter into a 50+ year contract, especially one that may require the use of eminent domain?

    • Not answered.

 

  • What was done to ensure safety of citizens? Who will manage the toll road (speed limit enforcement, traffic accidents, etc.)? How will that be paid for? If not Cibolo PD, then they can’t enforce anything because it’s a private road, correct?

    • TTC states they will pay for this, probably by contracting with the state or Cibolo PD. They said that speed limits will likely not be strictly enforced.

 

  • What was done to ensure citizens won’t lose money (property values suffer in value, long-term loss, etc.)?

    • We were provided tax assessor information on 3 properties near toll roads in different cities/situations. No additional information provided.
       

  • What happens if agreement is executed but midway through construction TTC runs out of funds?

    • TTC states this will not happen. They will have all funding from investors before construction begins.

 

  • Are there any recent independent studies that show there is an immediate need to develop a new roadway to I-10? If so, where are these studies?

    • The last study was done in 2006. No additional studies have been done.

 

  • Answered during council meeting The express lanes are described as “two lanes in the median extending 4 miles.” Mayor Dunn presented the video provided by TTC showing only a few flyovers – what exactly are the express lanes?

For Document, Click Here. 

  • The Development agreement states that FM 1103 from 35 to Weil will be tolled if the person travels from 35 to 10 (see below). We’ve been told by several different people that this isn’t true. Will that section be tolled?

    • Council members and others state existing 1103 will never be tolled. They still have not answered this question or addressed the fact that the development agreement (both versions) clearly state that drivers who travel from 35 to 10 will be charged for both sections

    • Crew/TTC state that this section WILL be tolled and that it is “for the citizens to cut down on the number of people using 1103 as a cut through.” 1) if this is to decrease traffic, how does that help TTC? Don’t they need traffic to make the road feasible? 2) How does it benefit Cibolo if TTC is making money off of taxpayer funded improvements? 3) How can a private company charge for use of a public road? I asked these questions and it kept getting danced around. Crew said the express lanes were added at the request of the city and didn’t need to be done.

For Document, Click Here. 

 

  • How many projects has TTC, Public Werks or any of its subsidiaries actually completed a project? None

    • Are those projects still in use? None

    • Did any go bankrupt/fail? If so, why? Most projects failed before ever being built, so no bankruptcies.

    • How many lawsuits have you been involved in?

      • With a city government? Yes, through Republic Holdings (Lubbock area)

      • Sued someone? Wasn’t given a number

      • Sued by someone? Wasn’t given a number

 

  • How will you protect the information of people travelling on the express lanes “for free” (exiting before the Parkway), such as license plate numbers, pictures of their car, etc.?

    • They will have a contractor do this. Pictures of license plates most likely. Data will not be stored. I forgot to ask if TXTag would work or if it would be a separate toll tag.

 

  • Corrected with amendments signed 5/9/17 The development agreement has several inconsistencies and contradictions. For example, during the February 28th meeting an amendment was added guaranteeing the construction of the express lanes at the same time as the TXDOT improvements. There are 3 places in the agreement where wording in the same paragraph contradicts this. Additionally, this same section also says the express lanes will begin construction after the City’s acceptance of FM 1103 from TXDOT. Example:

Cibolo Turnpike proposes to add two express lanes within the median, a distance of approximately 4 miles the “Cibolo Expressway.” The Cibolo Expressway project would begin after the completion of the TXDOT FM 1103 improvements, and the City’s acceptance of FM 1103 from TXDOT. The Cibolo Expressway will be funded solely by Cibolo Turnpike; and, as provided herein, the construction of the Cibolo Expressway shall be coordinated with TXDOT so that the construction of the express lanes shall occur simultaneously with the construction of the proposed TXDOT improvements in order to minimize traffic disruption on FM 1103.”

 

  • Why has a feasibility study not been done? The DA states a feasibility study was completed, but a true feasibility study must include a defined route. This project does not have one. The DA only states that a Pro Forma will be conducted. A Pro Forma is only a study of financial feasibility (analysis of debt, financial risk, etc.). It only protects the private company and determines if they can make money. A feasibility study helps protect the city and its citizens and resources. It’s concerning that only the study that protects TTC is in the agreement to be completed.

    • Partial answer at May 9th council meeting – TTC and Council state that a Pro Forma is the same thing as a Feasibility Study (they are not the same thing). A Pro Forma can be one piece of the Feasibility Study, but a true FS includes traffic, environmental impact, etc. TTC stated that a Pro Forma does not require a route to be determined. No additional information about an actual Feasibility Study.

 

  • Throughout the whole process we’ve been led to believe a feasibility study would be conducted before the final agreement was signed and that this study would include the final route. Obviously that didn’t happen before the agreement was signed – will it ever be done?

    • Council has responded that the presentation at the December 2016 meeting was an “initial feasibility study” and that they had to sign the agreement to get the full study done since it is anticipated to cost $10-12 million. However TTC and the development agreement state only a Pro Forma will be done. TTC has no plans for a full feasibility study.

 

  • What financial disclosures are required by council and city staff? How often are they filed? How often are they audited for accuracy?

    • Not answered

 

  • Why is this “amendment” being done by ordinance now? Does it invalidate the original agreement because it was passed by “order”?

    • Not answered

 

  • What is your bond rating?

    • TTC does not have a bond rating.

 

  • Construction management – do you have experience with this? Will this be subcontracted? DA states you will oversee it. How will you do that from Dallas?

    • Scott, TTC attorney, has experience with this. However they will be contracting someone to oversee the project. Development agreement requires quarterly updates to Council and TTC/contractor will do that.

 

 

  • Why was the development agreement rushed through in 2 weeks? How long did city council and city staff have to review it?

    • TTC stated that they gave the agreement to city staff in December. City staff reviewed it and gave it to council on February 14th – 2 weeks before it was signed. Crew said that “my time is worth a lot of money” and he had wasted enough time waiting on this project to be signed off on. He also insinuated that he gave the city an ultimatum to sign or he would walk. *This was from the meeting I had with TTC on May 9th

 

  • Who wrote the original development agreement?

    • TTC did. They based it off of a development agreement by a company out of the NE (Washington or Oregon).

 

  • Why was this not done through a sealed bid process? According to the Feb 28th presentation to council, 2 other companies were consulted. The former city hall building couldn’t be sold (less than $100k) without a sealed bid process being followed, so why was this allowed?

For Document, Click Here. 

 

  • At the May 9th meeting with TTC they said that one of the other companies was interested in doing the project if TTC would do the feasibility study. No reason for why the other company didn’t want to do the project.

 

  • How far away from schools will the road be? The entrance/exit?

    • They do not have a route determined yet.

 

  • Will Hazmat trucks be allowed?

    • No real answer, only that 1103 is a state road and TXDOT determines that.

  

  • Will people using the express lanes have to merge into one lane when those coming off of the overpass enter the road again?

    • Yes they will have to merge back in to 1103. TTC stated “There are solid white lines that are do not cross lines.” No information on the safety of these. “Will be determined during design process.”

 

  • What will be done regarding the extra noise pollution?

    • Walls were discussed in some areas but not for all neighborhoods. Walls are typical for toll roads and highways (also see 3009). What protections are we offering citizens?

    • Air brakes, engine brakes, general excess truck and vehicular noise, etc.?

      • TTC states these will be up to TXDOT to build and it is not a part of their project. TXDOT determines when sound barriers are needed. Scott (attorney for TTC) stated that sound barriers and safety /reinforced walls are two separate things and the safety/reinforced walls are not typically done. I asked about what safety measures would be taken to protect homeowners who back up to 1103 (they might have kids in the backyard – what happens if a car loses control and smashes though a wood fence?). They stated again that this would need to be addressed with TXDOT.

 

  • How long have you known the City Manager? When did these discussions start?

    • Discussions started in 2014/2015.

 

  • Will Environmental Impact Study address the economic impact to the homeowners on FM 1103?

    • TTC stated they will not be conducting an Environmental Impact Study, but instead be doing the less thorough Environmental Assessment.

 

  • Will a traffic impact study be completed before the EIS record of decision is released?

    • Not doing an EIS. Traffic study will only be done to determine if there is enough traffic to make money. They will not be looking at impacts of the road on current traffic.

 

  • Has TTC already approved the “amendments” that will be discussed during the meeting tonight?

    • Yes. TTC said they had seen them. TTC also stated they would be OK with completely removing the express lanes – that they were building them “for residents.” They stated they are tolling the express lanes to decrease the number of people using 1103 as a cut through to 10. When I asked how them tolling a public road that taxpayers paid to wide benefits citizens TTC said that the tolling was to decrease traffic. I asked how decreased traffic benefitted them since they need the traffic to make profit on the toll road and they said that they didn’t need to toll the road but were doing it to benefit the city, and that the City would be getting a cut of the profit after the investors had been paid. I asked if that meant the $30M for the express lanes had been paid or the total $125M project and they said the whole project. It was a very circular conversation and I don’t feel like they understood exactly what I was asking about.

 

  • When did council get the amendments (letter says May 5th)

    • Yes, May 5th.

 

  • Partially answered at the May 9th council meeting. Why are these changes being called “amendments” when they run throughout the entirety of the agreement? Amendments typically follow this format:

For Document, Click Here. 

 

  • “First Amended and Restated Development Agreement” – Do we expect more?

    • TTC Answer: Yes. Contracts can have multiple amendments.

 

  • What happens if TXDOT doesn’t agree to the turnback?\

    • TTC Amswer: TXDOT is dying to get rid of their roads. 1103 was a county road and TXDOT took over all county roads. They can’t keep up with maintenance and want to unload them on the cities to maintain. TTC was very confident that the turnback will happen.

 

  • What if TXDOT refuses the MOU again? Since they didn’t sign it yet and the bill for no new tolls passed, wouldn’t this project be rejected by TXDOT?

    • TTC Answer: MOU wasn’t needed for this project. The new bill does not apply to TTC since they are grandfathered.

 

  • If this doesn’t reach financial closing with Cibolo be reimbursed for money/time spent on it? (Page 11)

    • Did not have time to ask this question at TTC meeting and it hasn’t been answered.

 

  • TTC acting “in the name of the city” – will the city be held liable in a lawsuit?

    • TTC Answer: No.

 

  • How can eminent domain be used in ETJ/Non-Cibolo land?

    • TTC Answer: It’s for the good of the city. They don’t think they will need to use it.

 

  • If bankrupt, how will the portion of the agreement that states maintenance will be first priority be enforced? Will the new operator be required to follow the current agreements with TTC?

    • TTC and City answer: Yes. New operator will use same agreement and follow same contract. No proof that this will happen though.

 

  • Door hangers were distributed the first week of June. Who developed, designed, printed and distributed these?

    • We were told by one council member that TTC printed and distributed them but it was a joint effort between TTC and the city. Other council members stated this was only a TTC project and had nothing to do with the city.

 

  • If this was truly a TTC project, why is the city distributing newsletters with the EXACT SAME information as the door hangers? This raises additional questions, such as

    • Was city staff reimbursed for their time developing the door hangers?

    • Who wasn’t telling the truth?

    • If TTC really did do the door hangers on their own, why is the city using information from TTC in their own newsletters?

 

  • Who proofread the newsletters/door hangers? The information contradicts itself and is unclear.

 

  • The city posted a press release on the website this week stating the express lane construction will be delayed until after the TXDOT construction. This is in direct contradiction of the amendment to the motion passed 2/28/17 as well as wording in the contract. Why was this done without an amendment or council vote?

 

  • I spoke with two council members and Mayor Dunn after the last council meeting. I was explicitly told in no uncertain terms that there were NO plans to change anything until after the feasibility study was completed. Delaying the construction of the express lanes is clearly a major change not only in the timeline but also in the contract. Why was I given misinformation?

 

  • How long do you believe 1103 will be under construction (from the time TXDOT begins construction until the end of construction on the express lanes)?

 

  • Who will be responsible for maintenance if this happens?

 

  • Will TTC be required to do another noise study, EIS, etc. prior to the construction of the new overpasses? What will be the time delay since they can’t start a new EIS until construction of the TXDOT improvements has been fully completed?

 

  • Will the toll road part of the road (parkway) be constructed at the same time as the 1103 TXDOT improvements?

 

  • When will the noise barriers be put in? If a study is done before the express lanes are added (TTC stated they will not be doing this), who will pay for additional walls (as needed)? If additional height is needed, how much additional construction time will homeowners be expected to endure?

 

  • Will HOAs be involved in the design of the noise barrier walls?

 

  • When the project was presented to the MPO they asked if council had voted unanimously and based on the will of their constituents. Mayor Dunn responded yes. What survey, etc. was done to ensure this truly is the will of the citizens?

 

  • A comment was made by Mayor Dunn at the MPO meeting that there were many supporters but they didn’t show up to the public hearings and “pound the podium.” However, when those who oppose the toll road state there are more supporters who don’t show up to meetings we’ve been told “the only voices that count are the ones that show up.” Why the double standard? IS there a rule/regulation that determines which opinions “count” other than the ones that agree with council?

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Yard Signs will be available soon. Signs are free but donations to cover the cost are appreciated ($4 each). 

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