Meetings


03-2005

GOLDEN GATE BRIDGE, HIGHWAY AND TRANSPORTATION DISTRICT

MEMORANDUM OF MINUTES

BOARD OF DIRECTORS MEETING

FEBRUARY 11, 2005


The Board of Directors of the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District (District) met in regular session in the Board Room, Administration Building, Toll Plaza, San Francisco, California, on Friday, February 11, 2005, at 10:00 a.m., President Middlebrook presiding.

ROLL CALL
 

Directors Present (19): Directors Ammiano, Brown, Cochran, Dufty, Eddie, Hernández, Kerns, Martini, McGoldrick, Murray, Pahre, Reilly, Sandoval, Shahum, Smith and Stroeh; Second Vice President Boro; First Vice President Harrison; President Middlebrook

Directors Absent (0): None

Staff Present: General Manager Celia G. Kupersmith; District Engineer Denis J. Mulligan; Auditor-Controller Joseph M. Wire; District Secretary Janet S. Tarantino; Attorney David J. Miller; Deputy General Manager/Bridge Division Kary H. Witt; Deputy General Manager/Bus Division Susan C. Chiaroni; Deputy General Manager/Ferry Division James P. Swindler; Deputy General Manager/Administration and Development Teri W. Mantony; Public Affairs Director Mary C. Currie; Marketing and Communications Director Kellee Hopper; Planning Director Alan Zahradnik; Budget and Program Analysis Manager Jennifer Mennucci; Executive Assistant to the General Manager Amorette Ko; Assistant Clerk of the Board Karen B. Engbretson; Lieutenant John Fenstermaker

Visitors Present: Tom Johnson, San Francisco Resident; Noble A. (Rocky) Birdsey, Marin Center for Independent Living; Brooke Kuhn, Bay Area Women ’s Cycling; Carter Zinn, San Francisco Resident; David Pilpel, San Francisco Resident

   
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
  Director Janet Reilly led the Board of Directors in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.
   
PUBLIC COMMENT
  Tom Johnson proposed that the District perform a study on the feasibility of the privatization of Golden Gate Transit bus and ferry service.
   
CONSENT CALENDAR
 

Directors STROEH/EDDIE moved approval of the Consent Calendar. All items were approved by the following vote of the Board of Directors:

AYES (17): Directors Brown, Cochran, Dufty, Eddie, Hernández, Martini, McGoldrick, Murray, Pahre, Reilly, Sandoval, Shahum, Smith and Stroeh; Second Vice President Boro; First Vice President Harrison; President Middlebrook
NOES (0): None
ABSENT (2): Directors Ammiano and Kerns

   
1.

Approve the Minutes of the Regular Meeting of the Board of Directors of January 28, 2005

Carried

   
2.

Denial of Claims

a. Claim of Richard Porter

Carried

   
3.

Ratify Actions by the Auditor-Controller

Resolution No. 2005-009 (Finance-Auditing Committee, January 27, 2005) ratifies actions taken by the Auditor-Controller, as follows:

a. Ratify commitments and/or expenditures totaling $81,721.08;
b. Ratify investments made by the Auditor-Controller during the period December 7, 2004 through January 17, 2005, as follows; and,

Security
Purchase Date
Maturity Date
Original Cost
Percent Yield
Dexia Delaware LLC Comm. Paper
12/09/04
03/08/05
$7,654,884.42
2.37
Citigroup Global Commercial Paper
12/10/04
01/19/05
$5,969,705.00
2.30
FNMA Discount Note
12/17/04
01/03/05
$9,489,906.25
2.25
FNMA Discount Note
12/20/04
01/03/05
$10,499,804.62
2.25

c. Authorize the Auditor-Controller to re-invest, within the established policy of the Board, investments maturing between January 18, 2005 and February 14, 2005, and all other funds not required to cover expenditures that may become available; and,
d. Accept the Investment Report for December 2004 prepared by Public Financial Management.

Adopted

   
GENERAL MANAGER'S REPORT
4.

Presentations by District Staff

General Manager Celia Kupersmith highlighted an item in her written report regarding presentations to outside groups made by District staff during the month of January 2005. She stated that such a report of speeches, presentations and speaking engagements by District staff will be presented regularly in the Report of the General Manager.

   
5.

Presentation of Five-Year Service Award to Auditor-Controller Joseph M. Wire

President Middlebrook presented a Five-Year Service Award to Auditor-Controller Joseph M. Wire and expressed her congratulations on behalf of the Board of Directors, noting the extensive accomplishments of Mr. Wire, particularly his efforts to improve staff efficiency and internal controls through the implementation of the Financial Management Information System and his ongoing efforts to significantly reduce the District’s deficit.

   
ATTORNEY’S REPORT
6. Attorney Madeline Chun reported that all items contained in the Attorney’s Report were informational. Ms. Chun also reported that a closed session would be held just prior to the conclusion of the meeting to discuss security issues with District security personnel.
   
ENGINEER’S REPORT
7. No written report was presented by District Engineer Denis Mulligan. A written report is presented to the Board of Directors by the District Engineer at the second Board meeting of the month. At the meeting, Mr. Mulligan highlighted a significant milestone in the Golden Gate Bridge Seismic Retrofit project, stating that the contractor has finished construction of the new Tower 1, which concludes the replacement of all towers on land at both the North and South Viaducts of the Bridge. He noted that the weight of the Bridge will be transferred from the temporary tower to the new replacement tower on Monday, February 14, 2005.
   
REPORT OF THE BUILDING AND OPERATING COMMITTEE/COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE MEETING OF JANUARY 27, 2005
8. All items contained in this report are informational.
   
REPORT OF THE FINANCE-AUDITING COMMITTEE/COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE MEETING OF JANUARY 27, 2005
9. All Non-Consent Calendar items contained in this report are informational.
   
REPORT OF THE FINANCE-AUDITING COMMITTEE/COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE MEETING OF FEBRUARY 10, 2005
10. Chair J. Dietrich Stroeh advised that Agenda Item No. 8.C.1., Approve Renewal of the Marine Insurance Program, would not be ready for action at this meeting of the Board of Directors, due to the fact that the item had been continued to the February 24, 2005 meeting of the Finance-Auditing Committee.
   
SPECIAL ORDER OF BUSINESS
11.

Work Session Relative to the Development of a Strategic Plan for Achieving Long-Term Financial Stability

In a memorandum to the Board of Directors, Auditor-Controller Joseph Wire and General Manager Celia Kupersmith provided a report regarding the District’s financial situation with a review of recent deficit reduction actions and a potential strategic plan to achieve the deficit reduction goal. The report was a summary of information provided to the Finance-Auditing Committee at its meeting of December 16, 2004, of which the full staff report was included as Attachment A. The report outlined the current financial deficit, how the deficit has been reduced thus far and proposed actions the Board might take to eliminate the remaining portion of the deficit, with a focus on providing direction to staff on what projects to undertake over the next 18 months to eliminate the deficit. The report also included answers prepared by staff to questions on the financial deficit asked by the Finance-Auditing Committee at its December 16th meeting.

The report noted that the current five-year deficit is projected to be $108 million, a significant decrease from the first projected five-year deficit of almost $450 million reported four years ago. In 2001, the Board chose to deal with the large projected deficit with a steady and deliberative process in order to have the least negative effect on its customers, the general public and its employees. As part of this course of action, the Board first undertook deficit reduction measures that would have the greatest impact on the deficit: the first toll increase in 11 years, transit fare increases, delayed capital projects and a multi-year restructuring and reduction of the District’s transit service and staffing levels. Through these efforts, the deficit was successfully reduced by 75 percent to $108 million.

The report outlined several potential five-year deficit reduction targets for eliminating the remaining deficit, of which one of the targets is essentially complete. These targets were depicted graphically on a pie chart, with the amount of deficit reduction targeted for each described in detail. The five-year targets were listed as follows:

  1. Target A, Additional Local and Regional Subsidy, has essentially been completed. The new 18-month contract with the Marin County Transit District (MCTD) for Marin local intra-county bus transit services resulted in $20 million in increased revenue;
  2. Target B, Transit Fares is currently underway. A new five-year transit fare restructuring and increase program is being developed to provide $10 million in increased revenue;
  3. Target C, District-wide Savings is currently underway. Savings totaling $9 million is expected to be achieved through annual operating expense reductions, the first of which will be contained in the proposed Fiscal Year 2006 Budget, as well as expense reduction targets to be established for the next round of collective bargaining sessions; and,
  4. Target D, Other Revenue Increases, Including Leasing of Property is partly underway. Revenue totaling $69 million is expected to result from a potential Bridge toll increase, as well as smaller revenue increase components such as, leasing unused District property and seeking partnerships with private companies and other public agencies.

The report listed potential future actions for the District to consider during the next 18 months that would fully achieve the deficit reduction target of $108 million, as follows:

Bridge Toll increase, including its structure and timing;
Change in other toll policies, such as carpools;
Public and private partnerships/corporate sponsorships;
Bicycle and pedestrian access fees; and,
Expansion of concessions, such as Bridge tours.

The report noted that the Board would need to decide as to what revenue increase initiatives to undertake in addition to those currently underway, and would also need to prioritize any such initiatives in relation to certain major initiatives for the District that are already scheduled for the next 18 months. The report further noted that any direction provided by the Board at this Work Session would be incorporated into the work plans contained in the draft Fiscal Year 2006 Budget to be submitted in May 2005. A copy of the report, with attachments, is available in the Office of the District Secretary.

At the meeting, Celia Kupersmith introduced the topic of discussion, noting the accomplishments of the Board and staff over the past four years to make a significant decrease in the District ’s deficit. She briefly summarized the variety of historical and economic factors that had played a role in creating the District’s budget deficit, including the effects of the recession on ridership and toll revenue, the aftermath of 9/11 and increasing costs of doing business. She noted that positive trends such as increasing ridership and a growing economy bode well for the District to address its remaining deficit in the near future.

Joseph Wire briefly summarized the staff report for the Committee. He noted that the Board ’s actions in 2001 and 2002 to increase tolls for the first time in eleven years, coupled with transit fare increases and delays in certain capital projects, effectively reduced the original five-year deficit by half to approximately $225 million, which was further reduced in half by efforts in subsequent years to reduce transit service, staffing levels and health benefits. Mr. Wire stated that Bridge tolls represent the single largest income source for the District. He noted that in September 2002, at the time of the last toll increase, it was projected that in order to completely eliminate the District’s budget deficit, the toll would have to be raised to $8.00. However, at this point in time, with the deficit having been significantly reduced through various strategic initiatives, it is projected that raising the toll to the $5.00 to $6.00 range will fully solve the deficit in a short period of time.
Mr. Wire proceeded to describe the revenue enhancement options that were presented at the December 16, 2004 meeting of the Finance-Auditing Committee, including a list of five different toll increase options, which would raise net revenue in the range of $54 million to $111 million, depending on the size and timing of the increase. He also highlighted other revenue enhancement options, listed on pages 12-14 of the staff report. He described one of the options listed, a bicycle and pedestrian access fee for users of the Bridge sidewalks. He noted that the Board last reviewed this option in 2002, and at the time opted to pursue a voluntary donation collection box program instead. Mr. Wire noted that depending on how such a bicycle and pedestrian access fee was collected and enforced, the District could raise, at most, approximately $7-8 million in total over five years. He further noted that initiating this new type of fee would entail establishing a new type of collection process with new structural and staffing elements. Finally, he stated that implementation of any one of the “other revenue enhancement options,” would help to reduce the deficit but not fully solve the problem.

Public Comment

Noble A. (Rocky) Birdsey, representing the Marin Center for Independent Living, expressed his opposition to the elimination of the special discount toll rate for disabled individuals, since the amount of additional revenue from eliminating this discount would be insignificant compared to the substantial impact it would have on the fixed incomes of disabled individuals who use the program. He recommended that the carpool discount be maintained since it helps reduce congestion on the Bridge. He thanked the Board for keeping fare increases reasonable in the past, and urged the Board to be careful when setting any future fare increases so as to not to discourage transit ridership. He also expressed his opposition to a bicycle and pedestrian access fee on the Bridge, noting that such a fee could have negative impacts on tourism.

Brooke Kuhn, a member of a bicycle racing team, expressed her opposition to a bicycle and pedestrian access fee on the Bridge, noting that it is important for the District to provide free access to the Bridge sidewalks to provide an opportunity for physical exercise. She thanked the Board for its actions to improve safety on the Bridge sidewalks through the installation of the Public Safety Railing. She urged the Board to focus on increasing tolls for vehicles, not bicyclists and pedestrians.

Carter Zenn, an avid bicyclist who rides across the Bridge several times per week, also expressed his thanks for the installation of the Public Safety Railing, which greatly improves access on the Bridge sidewalks. He strongly discouraged consideration of a bicycle and pedestrian access fee on the Bridge, noting that the logistics of collecting such a fee would be enormous when hundreds of bicyclists cross the Bridge on weekends. He suggested charging a $5.00 toll for tourists who walk across the sidewalks and allowing commuter and recreational bicyclists to ride free. He also suggested setting higher Bridge tolls for lower gas mileage vehicles.

David Pilpel, expressed his support for a Bridge toll increase, in the form of a $1.00 cash toll increase in Fiscal Year 2007, with incremental increases in the FasTrak toll over three years. He expressed his opposition to a bicycle and pedestrian access fee on the Bridge, noting that the potential revenue would be small compared to the impact on the District’s public image. He supports new farebox recovery rates of 30% for bus transit and 50% for ferry transit, noting that Golden Gate Transit fares are already quite high, in his opinion. He requested more specific information regarding the cost reduction options listed in the staff report. He suggested that staff investigate ways to reduce transit expenses without cutting service, such as hiring part-time Bus Operators, changing Bus Operator work rules and scheduling modifications.

Discussion of this item by Board members included the following:

Director Boro made the following comments and suggestions:

  • He suggested that staff examine the impacts of freezing the operating budget for two years, including the kinds of expense reductions that would have to be undertaken as a result.
  • He suggested that the District institute a program of collecting fees from tour bus operators who use the Golden Gate Bridge Toll Plaza East Parking Lot, rather than charging individual tourists a user fee to walk across the Bridge.
  • He stated that corporate sponsorships could be worthwhile if they are pursued after the Board first sets a policy with specific goals and criteria for staff to follow when evaluating such opportunities.
  • He commended Mr. Wire for his ongoing efforts to educate the Board on deficit reduction strategies, and for providing multiple options to consider.
  • He noted that any consideration of congestion pricing for Bridge tolls should take into account the significant weekend congestion on the Bridge, as well as congestion along the Golden Gate Corridor of U.S. Highway 101. Attorney Madeline Chun stated that under applicable legal standards, actual congestion on the Bridge, or a nexus between congestion elsewhere on U.S. Highway 101 and direct impacts on the Golden Gate Bridge should exist in order to justifycongestion pricing.
  • He stated that it would be most appropriate for the full Board to discuss and prioritize the deficit reduction initiatives, rather than forming any special subcommittee.
  • As the District’s representative on the San Francisco Bay Area Water Transit Authority (WTA), he responded to suggestions that the District investigate the possible benefits of having the WTA take over Golden Gate Ferry service. He stated that the WTA has never discussed such a possibility, but that another ferry operator has approached the WTA with a similar request. He noted that the amount of subsidy required for the WTA to operate Golden Gate Ferry service may be too high for the WTA to take on.

Director Sandoval made the following comments and inquiries:

  • He suggested that the bicycle and pedestrian access fee be removed from further consideration, since the mere discussion of the topic seems to have a negative impact on the District ’s public image.
  • He inquired as to whether the District would still have a deficit if local Marin County transit service was no longer provided under contract with MCTD. In response, Mr. Wire explained that if such a scenario occurred, the revenue no longer received from MCTD is expected to correspondingly equal the transit expense that the District would no longer have to bear; therefore, with or without the local transit obligation, the impact on the deficit would be relatively unchanged.

Director Murray made the following comments and suggestions:

  • She suggested that the District consider congestion pricing for tolls, in which the toll would vary according to the level of traffic on the Bridge.
  • She suggested that the FasTrak toll be increased to match the cash toll rate of $5.00.
  • She stated that the bicycle and pedestrian access fee should be kept under consideration as a revenue enhancement measure.
  • She suggested that two-way toll collection be reinstituted, in order to capture northbound evening commute traffic bound for the East Bay.
  • She commented that any new ferry terminal improvements at Larkspur should be closely coordinated with rail station planning efforts by the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District.
  • She suggested that the Board consider changing the Carpool Toll Policy by shortening the effective hours in the morning to two hours instead of four, by deleting the afternoon hours and reducing the number of vehicle occupants to two persons per car to match the carpool policy on the state highways.
  • She suggested that the District hire a corporate development specialist to seek out and coordinate opportunities for corporate sponsorship.
  • She suggested that the District consider establishing a volunteer corps, modeled on a similar program at the County of Marin, as a way to reduce costs and build community support of the District ’s operations.
  • She noted for the record that no final decisions were being made by the Board at this meeting, and that many of the proposed initiatives need further analysis.

Director Ammiano made the following comments and suggestions:

  • He expressed his appreciation for the deliberative process by the Board to consider the various deficit reduction strategies.
  • He, too, stated his support for congestion pricing, if feasible on the Golden Gate Bridge.
  • He, too, suggested that the bicycle and pedestrian access fee be taken off the table, since there is a public perception that the discussion of the topic is a distraction while the District considers a toll increase.
  • He suggested that the District consider differential vehicle tolls based on gas consumption and air emissions.
  • He suggested that the District pursue other opportunities to receive Regional Measure 2 funding.

Director Shahum made the following comments and suggestions:

  • She acknowledged that the Board has made significant progress over the past four years in reducing the budget deficit.
  • She expressed her opposition to a bicycle and pedestrian access fee and commented that the Board’s time should be used wisely to discuss more significant deficit reduction options.
  • She noted that the size and weight differences between bicycles and vehicles are significant and that bicycles have much less impact on the Bridge structure.
  • She expressed her support for the Bridge toll increase scenario listed on page 10 of the staff report, in which the cash toll rate is increased to $6.00 in Fiscal Year 2007 and the FasTrak toll is increased incrementally by $0.25 in Fiscal Years 2006 through 2009.
  • She noted that cost of living in the Bay Area is continually increasing and that Bridge tolls should keep up with the times.

Director Reilly made the following inquiries:

  • She inquired as to how the budget would be affected by the four local “transition routes,” which will not come under the responsibility of MCTD until after the end of the proposed 18-month contract period. In response, Mr. Wire stated that these routes would have a cost neutral effect on the budget, since the District will no longer subsidize the routes when they are handed over to MCTD.
  • She inquired as to the long-term sustainability of the District over the next 10 years, and whether or not it would be realistic to keep increasing Bridge tolls. In response, Mr. Wire stated that while it is likely that Bridge tolls will increase over the next 10 years, the District should seriously examine the toll rate every four years, with the goal to keep any toll increases in line with inflation, enough to cover the District ’s costs of doing business.

Director Smith expressed his support for bicycle and pedestrian access fees, noting that he had originated the concept. He suggested that an access fee of $2.00 should be considered. In addition, he suggested that the WTA could serve as a partner to the District in providing ferry service, rather than taking it over completely.

Director Kerns made the following comments and suggestions:

  • He noted that the District is still in a fiscal crisis, and that the Board will need to make some difficult decisions in the coming months.
  • He stated his support for the bicycle and pedestrian access fee, noting that the District can no longer afford to let the public access the Bridge for free. He stated that any access fee program should be structured in such a way that does not penalize local residents, and suggested that frequent users of the Bridge sidewalks be issued coupons or discount tickets.
  • He concurred with Director Boro’s suggestion to charge tour buses a fee for parking at the Toll Plaza East Parking Lot.
  • He concurred with Director Murray’s suggestion to increase the FasTrak toll rate to $5.00, since in his opinion, most FasTrak users opt for electronic toll collection more for convenience, rather than the discounted price.

Director Brown made the following suggestions:

  • He suggested that the bicycle and pedestrian access fee be removed from consideration.
  • He suggested that an Executive Committee of the Board be formed to have detailed discussions of the deficit reduction strategies and then make recommendations to the full Board.

Director McGoldrick made the following comments and suggestions:

  • He suggested that consideration be given to constructing a new building at the Toll Plaza for use as a restaurant, banquet facility, social venue and/or museum as a revenue generation opportunity, taking advantage of the unique location at the Golden Gate Bridge.
  • He suggested that the District consider congestion pricing for tolls, linked to air pollution reduction efforts by the Bay Area Air Quality Management District.
  • He questioned whether it is necessary for the District to spend so much on security costs and suggested that such costs could be an area for expense reduction. He suggested that the District maintain maximum flexibility while remaining prudent with respect to security expenditures.

Director Eddie made the following comments and suggestions:

  • He commented that tolls represent the single highest source of revenue for the District, and can be considered a user tax. He noted that since bicycles, just like vehicles, provide another means for people to cross the Bridge, bicyclists should also pay a user tax.
  • He stated that the tolls have a significant amount of burdens placed on them, including subsidizing transit in order to reduce congestion on the Bridge. He noted that if the District had not received a considerable amount of state and federal grant funding to pay for the Golden Gate Bridge Seismic Retrofit project, the burden on the tolls would have been even higher.
  • He stated that Director McGoldrick’s suggestion to use the Toll Plaza Administration Building as a location for revenue generation opportunities may be a higher and better use for the building, and that certain administrative functions could be moved to vacant land at the District ’s San Rafael facility.

Director Hernandez thanked staff for preparing a comprehensive staff report. She cautioned that if the District considers having the San Francisco Bay Area WTA take over Golden Gate Ferry service, the District should remain mindful of maintaining the quality of life that ferry workers have enjoyed over the years based on the terms of collective bargaining agreements.

Director Harrison inquired as to whether staff is still analyzing the efficiency of regional Golden Gate Transit bus routes. In response, Mr. Wire answered in the affirmative, noting that the Service Review Committee meets regularly to look at the service performance of individual regional bus routes. He stated that if certain routes or bus trips are underperforming, the Service Review Committee considers how those resources can be better used to augment other regional bus service.

Director Martini made the following comments and suggestions:

  • He stated that the Bridge provided a means for the public to cross the Golden Gate Strait, and that access fees would be fair for all users of the Bridge. He noted that transit users pay a user fee in the form of fares, and that in terms of equity, it would be appropriate for bicyclists and pedestrians to pay an access fee to use the Bridge sidewalks.
  • He commended Mr. Wire for providing the Board a variety of deficit reduction strategies which allows the Board to focus on the difficult decisions that need to be made in order to solve the deficit.
  • He stated that it would be more appropriate for the full Board to discuss and prioritize the various deficit reduction strategies, rather than form a special committee to do so.

Director Stroeh commended staff for providing an excellent report on deficit reduction strategies. He expressed his support for forming an Executive Committee of the Board to further discuss and prioritize the list of possible deficit reduction strategies, and then make recommendations for the full Board to make the necessary policy decisions.

Director Pahre made the following comments and suggestions:

  • She acknowledged that staff and the Board have an enormous amount of work to accomplish in the next 18 months, and that the Board should remain mindful of not overwhelming staff.
  • She noted that increasing tolls will clearly solve the budget deficit, and suggested that cash tolls be increased by $0.50 in nine months and then by another $0.50 nine months later. She also suggested that the Board reconsider the policies for multi-axle and carpool tolls.
  • She suggested that the District invite the bicycle community to be partners in developing a fair and reasonable bicycle and pedestrian access fee.

The following information was requested by the Board members present:

Explain how any additional revenue from the rebound in transit ridership would be factored into reducing the remaining “Other Revenue” deficit reduction target of $69 million (Director Boro).

Analyze why the amount of the District’s transit subsidy for each year from 1998 to the present kept increasing each year. Look at possible causes for the increasing subsidy, such as the launch of the high-speed ferries (Director Boro).

Calculate the potential revenue to be realized from a new program of charging tour bus operators whose tour customers visit the Golden Gate Bridge, as well as the logistics of collecting such fees (Director Boro).

Perform a thorough analysis of the actual costs of splitting off Marin local bus service and providing only stand-alone Golden Gate Transit regional bus service (Director Murray).

Investigate the feasibility of increasing the toll rate for excessively heavy vehicles or setting the toll rate based on vehicle size (Directors Reilly and McGoldrick).

Investigate the possible benefits of having the San Francisco Bay Area WTA take over Golden Gate Ferry service (Directors Murray and Kerns).

Prepare a report on the history of, and the possibility of reforming, the Friends of the Golden Gate Bridge non-profit fundraising organization (Director Hernández).

Institute performance-based budgeting, and analyze how the new Financial Management Information System has affected the operating budget through changes in the work load (Director Murray).

Look at the cost of providing transit by other Bay Area transit agencies and analyze why Golden Gate Transit is one of the transit agencies with the highest costs in the Bay Area (Director Murray).

Look at possible cost containment for the District’s insurance programs and medical benefit costs (Director McGoldrick).

In conclusion, Celia Kupersmith responded to the suggestions and comments by Board members, and noted that the amount of the deficit included in the proposed Fiscal Year 2006 Budget is much smaller than it was just four months ago. She outlined the next steps for the Board and staff to undertake, as follows:

  1. She stated that staff will move ahead with the deficit reduction initiatives noted on page 3 of the staff report, including the proposed fare restructuring program to be discussed at an upcoming meeting of the Finance-Auditing Committee; and,
  2. She suggested that the Board hold another work session in three to four months to further discuss: 1) the deficit reduction initiatives; and, 2) the follow-up work by staff on some of the suggestions made by Board members at this meeting.

Action by the Board – None Required

   
CLOSED SESSION
12.

Attorney’s Report

Attorney Madeline Chun, at the request of President Middlebrook, stated that the Board of Directors would convene in closed session to discuss security issues with District security personnel.

After closed session, President Middlebrook called the meeting to order in open session with a quorum present. Attorney Chun reported that the Board of Directors met in closed session, as permitted by the Brown Act, and received a report from District security personnel regarding security issues. Ms. Chun stated that instructions were given to the General Manager and that there would be no action taken at this time.

   
ADJOURNMENT
13. All business having been concluded, the meeting was adjourned at 12:15 p.m., in the memory of Mike Yerbic, Stanley Warren and Catherine Kramer.

Respectfully submitted,

/s/Janet S. Tarantino
Secretary of the District
JST:KBE:kbe