LOCAL REVENUE FUNDS INCREASING
As part of the annual budget process, the Riverside County Transportation Commission (Commission) released its revenue projections for Fiscal Year 2014/15. Revenue projections include Measure A, the 1/2 cent sales tax program for transportation; Local Transportation Fund (LTF), which consists of funding derived from a 1/4 cent of the state's sales tax; and Transportation Uniform Mitigation Fees (TUMF). TUMF revenues consist of fees charged to new developments to ensure they pay for transportation facilities needed to accommodate growth. For FY 2014/15, the Commission approved revenue projections as follows:
When making projections, staff considers revenue trends, historical receipts, economic data, and forecast studies. Current trends indicate Measure A and LTF receipts are approximately 4.9% and 5.2% higher, respectively, for the six months ending December 31, 2013, compared to the same period last year. FY 2012/13 TUMF revenues were 89.1 percent higher than FY 2011/12, and FY 2013/14 receipts to date are comparable to FY 2012/13 trends.
Recovery from the nationwide recession in the local economy continues. Sales tax revenues have rebounded from the economic downturn's low economic point in 2010 and have increased for 16 consecutive quarters through the second quarter of 2013. The unemployment rate has been decreasing and job growth indicators are somewhat encouraging. The housing market is showing improvement with price appreciation and increase in building permits especially multi-family housing.
RCTC ALLOCATES $152 MILLION FOR LOCAL PROJECTS
Based on a multi-funding call for projects, the Commission approved $152 million to fund construction activities and project development for 33 projects located throughout Riverside County. A combination of state, federal, and Measure A regional arterial funds made up the funding stream. Projects selected for funding were based on regional significance, project readiness, availability of local match, safety, air quality, cost benefit, and consistency with the regional transportation plan/sustainable communities strategy. Examples of funded projects include interchange improvements, interchange widening, signal synchronization, a truck climbing lane, transit service, bike paths, sidewalk improvement projects, etc. A copy of the press release and staff report listing the various projects is available here.
COMMISSION ADOPTS ITS 2014 LEGISLATIVE PROGRAM AND PLATFORM
At the beginning of every year of the Legislature and Congress, the Commission adopts legislative platforms that outline the positions the Commission will take on various pieces of legislation, administrative policies, and regulations. A copy of the Commission's adopted legislative platform is available here.