Executive Council puts I-93 update in Concord, Spaulding Turnpike work on hold
The contracts were for projects expanding Interstate 93 from Bow through Concord and the Spaulding Turnpike from Newington to Dover.
Pappas noted the council was not going to decide in the next two weeks or the next two months whether to increase tolls.
Clement said there is and it could need to be updated in the future if some time passes, but said if the engineering work, right-of-way acquisitions and construction contracts do not move forward, the project will not be completed in 20 years.
"This project has been on the books for a long time," Clement said. "There is a congestion issue in that area."
District 3 Councilor Chris Sununu, R-Newfields, had similar concerns about an $820,000 contract with Vanasse Hangen Brustlin Inc. to determine how much it would cost to fix the General Sullivan bridge to carry pedestrian and recreational traffic.
Clement said the federal record of decision for the Spaulding expansion included a provision for the historical preservation of the bridge. At the time the cost was $20 million but is now estimated to cost $32 million or more. He said the analysis will determine whether the rehabilitation is cost effective.
The council tabled both items on 4-0 votes.
The council approved a $850,000 loan to Lakes Region General Hospital for start up costs to establish a designated receiving facility for mentally ill patients at Franklin Hospital.
The money will be used to made modification to the hospital so it will meet licensing standards for psychiatric facilities and to hire staff. The money will be paid back over the next 15 years.
Former Manchester School Superintendent Thomas Brennan was awarded a $40,000 contract by the Department of Education to work with schools and school districts in south central New Hampshire.
The council approved the contract, which will be paid for by federal Title I and II funds.
The council decided to delay a decision on a $2.7 million loan guarantee through the Business Finance Authority for Thomas More College in Merrimack.
The college sought the money to stabilize its finances and to continue its accreditation.
Sununu questioned if the 80 percent loan guarantee would help spur economic activity or job creation. The loan would be with First Colebrook Bank.
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