TRANSIT NEEDS PUBLIC HEARING
RCTC conducted the annual transit needs public hearing on October 2 at SunLine Transit Agency. Over 40 people attended the public hearing. Most of the comments were from residents seeking additional bus stops in rural areas, requests for increased service, and extensions of transit routes serving the area North of Palm Springs and the unincorporated areas of the Coachella Valley.
Anyone wishing to provide written comments regarding transit needs is encouraged to do so as all comments will be compiled and forwarded to the various transit agencies. Comments should be sent to Josefina Clemente at email@example.com.
In the near future, a community meeting will be held in the unincorporated area of eastern Riverside to seek additional comments related to transit needs. Information at the meeting will be provided in both English and Spanish.
CITIZENS ADVISORY COMMITTEE/SOCIAL SERVICES TRANSPORTATION ADVISORY COUNCIL
At its September 2014 meeting, the Commission appointed 10 members to its Citizens Advisory Committee/Social Services Transportation Advisory Committee (CAC/SSTAC). Click here for a copy of the staff report and list of appointed CAC/SSTAC members.
The roles and responsibilities of the CAC/SSTAC are to assist the Commission in complying with the Transportation Development Act (TDA) regulation; the TDA provides direction for administering both Local Transportation Fund and State Transit Assistance funds for bus and commuter rail services.
The funding promotes transportation service improvements and enhancements that support the mobility of older adults, persons with disabilities, and persons of limited means.
Additionally, the role of CAC/SSTAC members is to establish an effective communication exchange among Riverside county's public transit operators, its specialized transportation providers, and representatives of its transit dependent population regarding matters of mutual concern.
CALL FOR PROJECTS - FEDERAL TRANSIT ADMINISTATIONS SECTION 5310 PROGRAM
The Commission is currently seeking grant applications for the Federal Transit Administration's Section 5310 Enhanced Mobility for Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities Program. Approximately $13 million is available for the statewide competition (small urban and rural) and $2.7 million is available for the countywide competition (large urban). Eligible projects include vehicle purchases, vehicle-related equipment, and vehicle operations. The grant funding is available for projects serving the special needs of transit-dependent populations beyond traditional public transportation and ADA complementary paratransit services. The small urban and rural 5310 statewide application can be found here and the large urban 5310 application can be found here. All applications (small urban/rural and large urban) are due to RCTC by October 29.
COMMISSION-SPONSORED LEGISLATION SIGNED BY GOVERNOR
Recently Governor Brown signed two pieces of legislation sponsored by the Commission. SB 953 (Roth) gives the Commission and San Bernardino Associated Governments authority to enforce parking rules at its Metrolink stations. In addition, the Governor approved AB 1721 (Linder), which provides toll facility operators across California the ability to charge reduced-rate tolls on ultra low-emission vehicles such as electric cars and plug-in hybrids. AB 1721 achieves multiple objectives. For the Commission, the bill protects the I-15 Express Lanes project by ensuring at least some revenue will be captured from a fast-growing segment of the automobile market that is currently exempt from paying any tolls. Second, charging a discounted toll to electric vehicles provides an economic incentive for drivers to opt for alternate modes of transportation or travel at non-peak periods, allowing the express lanes to better manage congestion. A copy of the State and Federal Legislative Update staff report is available here.
RCTC RECEIVES SEVERAL PUBLIC OUTREACH AWARDS FOR 91 PROJECT RELOCATION EFFORTS
The American Planning Association (APA) recently awarded RCTC the 2014 Award of Merit for Public Outreach. The award recognized the RCTC's innovative efforts in relocating long-time senior residents of the Buena Vista Mobile Manor (BVMM). From the start of the right of way acquisition, the 91 Project team took an unconventional path that included an active public outreach campaign. In the case of the BVMM, sensitivity to the senior residents was paramount, as several were in their 80's. In addition to the APA award, the relocation outreach efforts also received the 2014 Excellence in Communications Award of Distinction from the California Public Information Officers and the 2014 Best Practices Award from the American Planning Association.