North Coast Rail Authority rolling toward the Black? Bay area wants Mad River water? February Meeting in Healdsburg.
All nine Directors were present for the February meeting. Former Director Gus Wolter was recognized for his past service. The board discussed Committee reports for the Property and Finance Committees before we had our first conduct of business, which was Discussion of Reinstatement of Stipend (or pay) for the Board Members. I spoke against and the other Directors agreed to table until next year. We then approved a financial audit by Pisenti and Brinker and approved an agreement between the NCRA and Parallel Infrastructure for Auditing services that will actually bring in monies for identified Right of Ways.
Executive Director Mitch Stogner reported on a letter sent to the Sonoma-Marin Area Rapid Transit (SMART ) concerning 16 turnout projects needed by North Western Pacific Co. (NWPco) between Novato and Santa Rosa. Mr. Stogner also reported on Project Engineer John Anderson’s pre-feasibility type estimate of repairing 52 miles of rail line form Windsor to Ukiah. There is interest by the Chinese Rail Institute through HJI Group to fund this potential 40 million dollar expansion project.
Property Specialist Doug McCorkle has had inquiry by the Humboldt Bay Municipal Water District of potential water pipeline from Mad River to the Bay Area using the NCRA rail Right of Way. Quite shocking for the Humboldt Directors and first I had heard of that.
NWPco Operator John Williams said he needed more of the turnouts active and spurs available for more business. Would really like to see expansion to Cloverdale at least. Would prefer the NCRA pursue grants rather than loans. NWPco now servicing 7 businesses with 15 to 20 loads a week and ready to make a profit.
The above picture is the service of barley to Lagunitas in Petaluma. The Below picture is of NWPco operating through heavy rain near Shellville on Feb. 10th, 2014. Yes, rail is currently up and running.