June 8, 2006
(For Board: June 23, 2006)

 

REPORT OF THE TRANSPORTATION COMMITTEE

 

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

Honorable Members:

A meeting of the Transportation Committee was held in the Board Room, Administration Building, Toll Plaza, San Francisco, California, on Thursday, June 8, 2006, at 10:00 a.m., Chair Brown presiding.

Committee Members Present (7): Chair Brown; Vice Chair Kerns; Directors Cochran, Eddie, Hernández, Moylan and Stroeh. Directors Eddie, Hernández and Stroeh were appointed Committee members Pro Tem for this meeting only.

Committee Members Absent (4): Directors Murray, Newhouse Segal and Pahre; President Middlebrook (Ex Officio)

Other Directors Present (1): Director Boro

Staff Present: General Manager Celia G. Kupersmith; District Engineer Denis J. Mulligan; Auditor-Controller Joseph M. Wire; Secretary of the District Janet S. Tarantino; Attorney Madeline Chun; 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; Risk Management and Safety Director William L. Stafford; Planning Director Alan R. Zahradnik; Deputy District Engineer Ewa Z. Bauer; Budget and Program Analysis Manager Jennifer Mennucci; Executive Assistant to the General Manager Amorette Ko; Assistant Clerk of the Board Karen B. Engbretson

Visitors Present: Arthur A. Goepp, III and Gregory W. Wessel, Marsh Risk and Insurance Services

     
1. Report of the District Advisory Committees
     
  a. Advisory Committee on Accessibility
     
   
The agendas for the May 18, 2006, and the April 20, 2006, meetings and the minutes of the April 20, 2006, and the March 16, 2006, meetings of the Advisory Committee on Accessibility were furnished to the Transportation Committee.  Copies are available in the Office of the District Secretary and on the District’s web site.
     
  b. Bus Passengers Advisory Committee
     
   
The agenda for the April 26, 2006, meeting and the minutes of the February 15, 2006, meeting of the Bus Passengers Advisory Committee were furnished to the Transportation Committee.  Copies are available in the Office of the District Secretary and on the District’s web site.
     
  c. Ferry Passengers Advisory Committee
     
   

The agendas for the May 3, 2006, and the April 5, 2006, meetings and the minutes of the April 5, 2006, and the March 1, 2006, meetings of the Ferry Passengers Advisory Committee were furnished to the Transportation Committee.  Copies are available in the Office of the District Secretary and on the District’s web site.

Action by the Board – None Required

     
2.
Status Report on the Development of the FY 06/07 Agreement with the Marin County Transit District for Provision of ADA Inter-county Paratransit Service
     
 

In a memorandum to Committee, Paratransit Coordinator Cynthia B. Petersen, Director of Planning Alan R. Zahradnik, Deputy General Manager/Bus Division Susan C. Chiaroni and General Manager Celia G. Kupersmith provided a report on the status of the development of the FY 06/07 Agreement between the District and the Marin County Transit District (MCTD) for Inter-county Paratransit Service (FY 06/07 Paratransit Agreement). The report stated that the FY 06/07 Paratransit Agreement is currently being developed by the District and the MCTD staffs to reflect the principles of the past Inter-county Paratransit Agreements and the new Agreement for Marin Local Bus Service. Presently, the MCTD is concluding negotiations on its FY 06/07 contract for paratransit services throughout Marin County. Concurrently, the District and the MCTD staffs are finishing their work on the FY 06/07 Paratransit Agreement and expect to present it to their respective Boards for approval within the next 30 days. Since the FY 06/07 Paratransit Agreement is still under discussion by the staffs of the two agencies, the FY 06/07 Paratransit Agreement will not be finalized until after the start of FY 06/07, and the final terms will apply retroactively to July 1, 2006.

The report explained that the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) does not allow denials of mandated paratransit service and requires, at a minimum, that transit operators provide special paratransit services to ADA-eligible passengers to and from locations within three-quarters of a mile on either side and within the comparable service hours, of that agency’s non-commute fixed bus routes. The report provided a preview of the FY 06/07 Paratransit Agreement, describing how the paratransit costs are allocated between the MCTD and the District by the paratransit contractor, Marin Senior Coordinating Council/Whistlestop Wheels. The report noted that in the new relationship with the MCTD, the District pays the MCTD for the inter-county paratransit service. The report stated that the total budget for the District’s paratransit services next year is expected to increase by approximately 5.3% more than costs for FY 05/06. This increase is attributed to increased fuel, facility rental, insurance, technical support and system equipment costs, as well as costs for an additional part-time mechanic position. The report further stated that the increased paratransit budget for FY 06/07 also reflects costs associated with increased service hours and capacity, which have been added to ensure that there are no denials of ADA-mandated paratransit service. The report also included a chart depicting the demand of ADA paratransit trips, and the percentage by which this demand is increasing for both local and inter-county paratransit service. A copy of the staff report is available in the Office of the District Secretary and on the District’s web site.

At the meeting, Celia Kupersmith described the significant changes in the new Agreement for Marin Local Bus Service, noting that historically the District was not required to make a financial contribution for Marin County local paratransit service (service which begins or ends within Marin County within three-quarters of a mile of a Golden Gate Transit non-commute regional bus route and within the comparable non-commute service hours). She further noted that in the new Agreement for Marin Local Bus Service, the District will now pay a share of the costs associated with intra-county paratransit service, and that this new financial obligation has been incorporated into the FY 06/07 Operating Budget.

Action by the Board – None Required

     
3.
Status Report on the Development of the Short-Range Transit Plan for Regional Bus and Ferry Service
     
 

In a memorandum to Committee, Director of Planning Alan R. Zahradnik and General Manager Celia G. Kupersmith provided a report on the status of the development of the District’s Short-Range Transit Plan (SRTP). The report stated that the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) has adopted new requirements for the Short-Range Transit Plans (SRTP) submitted by transit operators in the Bay Area. A full SRTP is required once every four years, and in all other years, transit operators must submit a “Mini SRTP”. The report listed the major changes in SRTP reporting requirements, noting that the most significant changes are that a full SRTP will be required every four years rather than every other year, and that the new Mini SRTP replaces the SRTP Interim Year Update in intervening years. In addition, transit operators are required to provide specific passenger demographic information gathered from a passenger survey administered every four years. The first passenger survey will be conducted in the fall by the MTC for all regional transit operators.


The report also stated that the District will provide a Mini SRTP later this year, covering base year FY 06/07 and extending through FY 15/16. Staff is now working to provide the draft Mini SRTP to the MTC by June 30, 2006, with a final report due September 2006. The final report will be presented to the meetings of the Transportation and Board of Directors in August or September for approval before submittal of the final report to the MTC. As has been the case with previous SRTP documents, this Mini SRTP will also include a report on local bus service contracted by Marin County Transit District (MCTD). Next year, the District must submit a full SRTP with a draft version due in July 2007 and the final due in September 2007. Staff anticipates developing a full SRTP, to focus on regional bus and ferry services, since MCTD has recently prepared an SRTP that addresses local Marin bus services. The report further outlined the proposed content of the Mini SRTP, noting that staff will use information in the District’s adopted FY 06/07 Operating and Capital Budgets, as well as previous 10-year financial projections, as the basis for the content of the Mini SRTP. The report noted that the future 2007 submission of the full SRTP is a prerequisite to continued state and regional funding for the District’s transit program. A copy of the staff report is available in the Office of the District Secretary and on the District’s web site.

At the meeting, Ms. Kupersmith briefly summarized the staff report, and elaborated on the MTC’s new requirement in the SRTP for specific demographic information about transit passengers. She noted that the District has not undertaken a passenger survey in several years, and that the passenger survey, to be conducted in the fall by the MTC, will yield important data regarding Golden Gate Transit passengers.

Action by the Board – None Required

     
4.
Monthly Report on Activities Related to Marin Local Service Contract with Marin County Transit District
     
 
The monthly report on activities related to the Marin Local Service contract with the Marin County Transit District (MCTD) was furnished to the Transportation Committee.  The report included the following elements:
     
  1.
A spreadsheet from the Planning Department outlining GGT bus service performance of both District regional routes and MCTD local routes, providing statistics regarding riders per hour, revenue per hour, cost per hour, fare recovery and deficit per passenger for the two types of bus service, for the months of  March and April 2006; and,
  2.
A spreadsheet from the Auditor-Controller outlining the history of payments made to date by MCTD to the District for intra-county bus transit services in Marin County. This spreadsheet now reflects payments made under the new five-year Agreement with the MCTD for Marin Local Bus Service, which became effective on May 1, 2006.
     
 

Due to the high volume of agendas and minutes from Marin County agencies related to this item, hard copies of those items were not provided to the Committee.  Instead, electronic versions of the following items were posted on the District’s web site:

1. Notice of the May 30, 3006, special meeting of MCTD;
2. Agenda of the May 30, 2006, meeting of MCTD;
3. Agenda of the May 9, 2006, meeting of MCTD;
4. Agenda and minutes of the May 2, 2006, meeting of MCTD;
5. Minutes of April 4, 2006, meeting of MCTD;
6. Agenda of the May 25, 2006, meeting of the Transportation Authority of Marin (TAM);
7. Agenda and minutes of the April 27, 2006, meeting of TAM;
8. Minutes of the March 30, 2006, meeting of TAM;
9. Agenda of the May 10, 2006, meeting of the TAM Executive Committee; and,
10. Agenda and minutes of the April 12, 2006, meeting of the TAM Executive Committee.

 

Copies of all of the above-listed items are available in the Office of the District Secretary and on the District’s web site.

At the meeting, Ms. Kupersmith reported that as of June 30, 2006, the MCTD will adopt a new service plan for local bus service, which will involve changes to almost all of MCTD’s local bus routes. She also noted that the District staff will assist the MCTD staff with marketing efforts regarding the service changes, effective September 2006.

Discussion ensued, including the following:

     
 
  • Chair Brown expressed his appreciation for the collaboration between the staffs of the MCTD and the District, which has led to a mutually beneficial working relationship between the two agencies.

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 10:10 a.m.
     

Respectfully submitted,

/s/ Harold C. Brown, Jr., Chair
Transportation Committee