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Feds give Nevada $11M for Boulder City Bypass

LAS VEGAS (AP) -- Nevada is getting more than $11 million in federal transportation money to help build the Boulder City Bypass.

Gov. Brian Sandoval announced the infusion of funds on Wednesday, saying the federal money will take the place of state funds in the project.

The bypass aims to send highway traffic around the small town of Boulder City rather than through it. Early estimates put the project price tag at about $600 million.

The new funds came as part of a process called the August redistribution, in which the federal government redistributes money from states that can't use it all and gives it to other states that have projects ready to go.

The Boulder City Bypass is a key element of the proposed Interstate 11 linking Las Vegas and Phoenix.

Gov. Sandoval announces money for Boulder City Bypass

Governor Brian Sandoval announced Wednesday that the Nevada Department of Transportation will get an extra $11.1 million in highway funding for its phase of the Boulder City Bypass.

The money is coming from the Federal Highway Administration, which means the funds will replace state money slated for the project. The bypass is part of the proposed Interstate-11 Corridor.

The funding came from the FHWA’s annual redistribution of money other states did not use in their transportation projects.

According to Sandoval, the money will allow NDOT to hire more people to push the project along. 

Goldstrike Canyon and Arizona Hot Spring trails reopen

BOULDER CITY, NV -- Goldstrike Canyon and Arizona Hot Spring trails, reopened Saturday after a temporary closure.

The trails were closed because public safety incidents in the canyons doubled from 2013 to 2014. Back in 2013 alone, there were 17 incidents, which resulted in one fatality, 31 patients and five medical transports.

That number rose by 20 to 37 incidents within the first seven months of 2014. These incidents resulted in three fatalities, 35 patients and 13 medical transports.

However, since the closure, there have been zero search and rescues from these locations.

The area known as White Rock Canyon has multiple trails leading to the Arizona Hot Spring, Liberty Bell Arch and the Colorado River. Goldstrike Canyon leads to Goldstrike and Nevada hot springs and the Colorado River.

The trails at both of these locations are strenuous and technical. There is no shade or water and there is limited cell phone service.

Fees resume at Lake Mead

BOULDER CITY, Nev. -- The National Park Service said entrance fees for Lake Mead National Recreation Area have resumed. Officials started charging to go through the area Sunday.

The fees were previously halted after massive flood waters closed the area. The waiver of fees allowed drivers of passenger vehicles and selected commercial vehicles to detour the interstate closure after it was washed out by flooding.

But, now all passenger traffic can travel on I-15. Some restrictions still apply for commercial vehicles. Details can be found here.

Vehicle passes at Lake Mead National Recreation Area are $10 for 1-7 days or $30 for the remaining calendar year. Seniors (62 and older) may purchase a lifetime pass for $10. Active duty military may obtain a free annual pass. Those who are permanently disabled may receive a free lifetime pass also.

Boulder City attorney admits to 1 ethics violation

BOULDER CITY, Nev. -- Dave Olsen, the attorney for Boulder City, is facing a fine for an ethics violation.

Olsen's case went before the Nevada Commission on Ethics on Wednesday. Former Boulder City Police Chief Tom Finn filed a formal ethics complaint about Olsen helping his son, Brian Olsen, sue his own employer.

Brian Olsen was facing criminal charges regarding nude photos allegedly stolen from a cell phone. Brian Olsen sued Henderson and Boulder City for false arrest. He listed his father, Dave Olsen, as the principal expert witness. The charges were later dropped and a judge found the lawsuit without any merit.

Olsen agreed to one willful violation and is facing a fine of $1,500.

Travel detours for drivers to bypass damaged I-15

LAS VEGAS -- Authorities have opened a route through Nevada's Valley of Fire State Park to passenger vehicles detouring around a flood-damaged section of Interstate 15.

Northbound: Take I-15 north to exit 75, drive through the Valley of Fire Highway, turn North on Highway 169. This will connect you back to I-15 northbound above the washout.

Southbound: Take I-15 southbound through Mesquite, take exit 93, then Highway 169 southbound to the Valley of Fire Highway. This will connect you back onto I-15 below the washout.

Trucks traveling between Las Vegas and Salt Lake City are still required to use a roundabout detour between Exit 64 in Nevada and Exit 59 in Utah. That route uses U.S. 93, Nevada State Route 319, and Utah State Route 56 through Panaca, Nevada, and to Cedar City. You can also  turn south onto Utah Route 18 to get to St. George (as shown on map).

Boulder City bypass eminent domain case settled

A dispute over land needed for the Boulder City Bypass has been settled.

A state panel has settled an eminent domain dispute with a gaming giant over land the state needs for the first phase of the Boulder City Bypass.

Read more in the Las Vegas Review-Journal.