weather icon Overcast

Bill to extend interstate jumps first hurdle

The Interstate 11 project is in its infancy, but the ultimate goal of it taking drivers from Mexico to Canada took another step forward.

In March, the Intermountain West Corridor Development Act was introduced in the Senate to allow Nevada and Arizona’s transportation departments the flexibility to develop corridors that would eventually connect Southern Arizona and Northern Nevada through I-11.

U.S. Sens. Dean Heller, R-Nev., Harry Reid, D.-Nev., John McCain, R-Ariz., and Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., worked on the act.

As part of the Developing a Reliable and Innovative Vision for the Economy Act, the bill to extend I-11 through Northern Nevada recently passed through the Senate’s Environment and Public Works Committee by a 20-0 vote, Heller spokesman Neal Patel said.

Reid got the initial designation for the bill in 2012, said Reid spokeswoman Kristen Orthman, who added that the Nevada senators have worked together to get the interstate extended.

But with the Highway Trust Fund Authority set to expire July 31, Patel said Congress must act soon to fund the bill. He added that a bill for the I-11 extension could make it to the Senate floor sometime this month.

The bill’s passage through the environmental and public works committee comes about a month before blasting is to begin for the Boulder City bypass. The Eldorado Valley has been encircled in orange fencing as officials continue to block off the area before blasting.

Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada spokeswoman Monika Bertaki said blasting is set to begin between late July and mid-August.

“Prior to the start of blasting, notifications will be sent to homes and businesses in Boulder City to ensure residents are aware that blasting will occur during the specified time period,” she said.

Ryan Mendenhall, divisional manager for Las Vegas Paving and project manager for the RTC’s 12.5 mile portion of the bypass, said the company plans to use a different type of explosive that reduces the amount of dust in the air.

Though concrete has yet to be laid for the project, the I-11 extension measure’s passage through the senate’s committee is a win for Nevada, said state lawmakers who have been touting its importance since its inception.

“Today is a good day for Nevada as we are now one step closer to completing the I-11 extension,” Heller said in a statement. “It was certainly great to see my colleagues from both sides of the aisle agree (that) an extension of I-11 through Nevada will provide the economic and trade development our state deserves.”

Contact reporter Steven Slivka at sslivka@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9401. Follow @StevenSlivka on Twitter.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
Study: Solar panels improve desert life

The solar panels in the Eldorado Valley outside of Boulder City could help desert plants and wildlife because of how they direct rainwater into the ground, according to researchers with Las Vegas’ Desert Research Institute.

Vaccine clinics scheduled

Some Boulder City residents will be able to receive the COVID-19 vaccine for free locally, starting Monday, Jan. 25.

Vece joins race for council seat

With five days remaining until the filing period for those wishing to run for a seat on the City Council officially opens, the pool of candidates continues to grow.

Planning begins for students to return to campuses

Local leaders are unsure how they will implement new guidance from the school district about reopening campuses to students and teachers.

Vaccine questions answered

Boulder City Hospital adheres to federal, state and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines for the distribution and administration of the COVID-19 vaccine. Due to the limited quantity available of the newly developed vaccine, a tiered system has been implemented and identifies vulnerable populations to be immunized.

Salary range, guidelines set for new city attorney, manager

The search for the next city manager and city attorney is a little more defined as City Council recently approved the salary range and compensation package for each position.

Purpose of proposed ballot question contested

City Council is divided on whether safety or growth is the purpose of a proposed ballot question about airport capital improvement projects and have yet to decide about moving forward with it.

Three announce plans to seek council seat

Candidate filing for Boulder City’s 2021 municipal election starts in less than two weeks and three residents have already announced their intention to run for city office.

Temporary staff check for COVID compliance

Boulder City is using temporary part-time code enforcement officers to help ensure that local businesses are complying with current health and safety guidelines for the pandemic.

Two council seats up for election

The 2021 municipal election will see residents voting to fill two seats on City Council as well as offer guidance on some community issues.