Meetings

January 13, 2005
(For Board: January 28, 2005)

REPORT OF THE TRANSPORTATION COMMITTEE/
COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE

Honorable Board of Directors
Golden Gate Bridge, Highway
and Transportation District

Honorable Members:

A meeting of the Transportation Committee/Committee of the Whole was held in the Board Room, Administration Building, Toll Plaza, San Francisco, California, on Thursday, January 13, 2005, at 10:00 a.m., Chair Brown presiding.

Committee Members Present (9): Chair Brown; Vice Chair Shahum; Directors Cochran, Harrison, Kerns, Murray, Pahre and Smith; President Middlebrook (Ex Officio)
Committee Members Absent (0): None
Other Directors Present (3): Directors Eddie, Reilly and Stroeh

Committee of the Whole Members Present (12): Directors Brown, Cochran, Eddie, Kerns, Murray, Pahre, Reilly, Shahum, Smith and Stroeh; First Vice President Harrison; President Middlebrook
Committee of the Whole Members Absent (6): Directors Ammiano, Hernández, Martini, McGoldrick and Sandoval; Second Vice President Boro

Staff Present: General Manager Celia G. Kupersmith; District Engineer Denis J. Mulligan; Secretary of the District 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; Planning Director Alan Zahradnik; Public Affairs Director Mary C. Currie; Acting Auditor-Controller and Capital and Grant Program Manager Nina Rannells; Budget and Program Analysis Manager Jennifer Mennucci; Principal Planner Maurice P. Palumbo; Assistant Clerk of the Board Karen B. Engbretson

Visitors Present: None

1.

Report of the District Advisory Committees

a. Advisory Committee on Accessibility (ACA)

The agendas for the December 16, 2004, and the November 18, 2004, meetings and the minutes of the November 18, 2004; September 16, 2004; July 15, 2004; and, June 17, 2004, meetings of the Advisory Committee on Accessibility were furnished to the Transportation Committee. Copies are available in the Office of the Secretary of the District.

b. Bus Passengers Advisory Committee

The agenda for the December 1, 2004, meeting and the minutes of the October 20, 2004, meeting of the Bus Passengers Advisory Committee were furnished to the Transportation Committee. Copies are available in the Office of the District Secretary.

c. Ferry Passengers Advisory Committee

The agendas for the January 5, 2005; December 1, 2004; and, November 3, 2004, meetings and the minutes of the December 1, 2004; November 3, 2004; and, October 13, 2004, meetings of the Ferry Passengers Advisory Committee were furnished to the Transportation Committee. Copies are available in the Office of the District Secretary.

Action by the Board – None Required

   
2.

Monthly Report on Activities Related to Marin Local Service Contract with Marin County Transit District

General Manager Celia Kupersmith informed the Committee that a monthly report on activities related to the 18-month Marin Local Service contract with the Marin County Transit District (MCTD) has been added to the Committee’s agenda as a standing agenda item. A spreadsheet from the Auditor-Controller outlining payments made by MCTD to the District for intra-county bus transit services in Marin County was provided to the Committee, and this spreadsheet will be updated each month to show all payments that will be made during the 18-month term of the contract. Ms. Kupersmith stated that in the future this spreadsheet will include payments by MCTD to the District for the Ride and Roll Program. In addition, the District Secretary will furnish the Committee with minutes from the Transportation Authority of Marin (TAM) and the MCTD meetings. At this meeting, the following sets of minutes were provided to the Committee: (1) the minutes of the December 8, 2004, meeting of the TAM Executive Committee; (2) the minutes of the November 18, 2004, meeting of TAM; and, (3) the minutes of the November 10, 2004, meeting of the TAM Executive Committee.

Ms. Kupersmith pointed out that as of the date of this meeting, all payments by MCTD are current. She stated that staffs of both the District and MCTD are in the process of scheduling a final meeting of the Joint Negotiating Committee for Marin Local Service Contract, to be held in February 2005. She further stated that the respective Boards of the District and MCTD would be holding at least two public joint meetings per year of both agencies. She noted that future discussions of this item will also cover the newly executed contract with MCTD for the Ride and Roll Program. Copies of the payment history spreadsheet, as well as the sets of minutes noted above, are available in the Office of the District Secretary.

Discussion ensued, including the following:

  • Director Harrison noted that MCTD took advantage of the offer to pay by December 31, 2004, 50% of the retroactive payment for intra-county bus transit services for the period from November 2003 to October 2004.
  • President Middlebrook expressed her appreciation to staff for providing the Committee with a report on the payment history and presenting the report in such a clear, understandable format.

Action by the Board – None Required

   
3.

Status Report from District Appointees on the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit (SMART) Board

The agenda for the December 15, 2004, meeting and the minutes of the October 20, 2004, meeting of the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District (SMART), were furnished to the Transportation Committee. Copies are available in the Office of the Secretary of the District.

General Manager Celia Kupersmith informed the Committee that this standing agenda item would no longer be presented to the Transportation Committee, but rather, would now be under the jurisdiction of the Building and Operating Committee. She stated that this change is being made since SMART is currently dealing with property management, design and construction of the railroad right-of-way rather than transportation issues associated with the operation of a rail transit system.

Director Eddie, one of the two District appointees to SMART, reported that SMART’s Real Estate Committee has been meeting to discuss possible revenue generation opportunities from properties along the railroad right-of-way, particularly the station sites in Novato, Petaluma and Santa Rosa. He stated that such development opportunities are considered within the parameters of SMART’s future transportation needs.

Discussion ensued, including the following:

  • Director Kerns noted that with the passage of Measure M, Sonoma County’s quarter-cent transportation sales tax, SMART has guaranteed funding to continue work on the Environmental Impact Report and other environmental and design studies. He further stated that SMART, as well as the North Coast Railroad Authority, have experienced frequent problems with freight barges hitting some of the railroad bridges along the right-of-way.
  • In response to an inquiry by Director Murray regarding the status of the Northwestern Pacific Railroad Authority (NWPRA), Ms. Kupersmith provided a brief status report on the transfer of NWPRA assets to SMART, noting that the NWPRA has been dissolved, having fulfilled its mission as steward of the railroad right-of-way until a rail operator, SMART, could assume responsibility for the right-of-way. She further explained that now that the transfer of ownership has been completed for the segments of the right-of-way north and east of Novato, staff has begun the process of transferring the District-owned segments of the right-of-way that run south of Novato to Corte Madera Creek, a portion of which is jointly owned by the District, the County of Marin and MCTD. She stated that certain issues associated with the transfer of District-owned railroad property will necessitate policy direction from the Board of Directors, for which staff will present a recommendation to this Committee in February or March 2005.
  • Attorney Miller noted that the transfer of District-owned railroad property will involve matters related to joint use and ownership, as well as reservation of the District’ s rights with respect to right-of-way properties such as the San Rafael Transit Center and the Muzzi Marsh.
  • Ms. Kupersmith reported that during the storms of the past two weeks, the Novato Creek area of the right-of-way underwent significant damage, with the embankment washed out underneath the tracks on the north end of the creek. She stated that emergency repairs were made by the Marin County Public Works Department in conjunction with SMART. Director Eddie noted that with all the emergency repairs and on-going maintenance required, it is almost as costly to maintain the railroad right-of-way as it is to operate trains on the right-of-way. Ms. Kupersmith concurred, noting that District staff has been working with Lillian Hames, the Executive Director of SMART, to put systems in place for SMART to perform its own maintenance and repairs of its railroad right-of-way property.

Action by the Board – None Required

   
4.

Comments by Committee Members

Director Murray reported that the Marin County Board of Supervisors recently directed County staff to prepare an Economic Feasibility Study regarding the relocation of San Quentin State Prison, which would have bearing on the possible relocation of the Larkspur Ferry Terminal. Ms. Kupersmith stated that Planning Department staff will contact the County of Marin to inquire if it would be necessary for the District to participate in the San Quentin study process.

Action by the Board – None Required

   
5.

Public Comment

There was no public comment.

   
6. Adjournment

All business having been concluded, the meeting was adjourned at 10:20 a.m.

Respectfully submitted,

 

Harold C. Brown, Jr., Chair
Transportation Committee

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