Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Board Meeting Report

September 15, 2010 Meeting in Suisun City

Reported by Michael Barnbaum, Associate Director

Nine out of a total sixteen directors were present, barely constituting a majority of Directors for this meeting. After Roll Call and the Pledge of Allegiance, Chair Holmes (Placer County) addressed the audience in his “Report of the Chair” time on the microphone. Some of his remarks highlighted the lack of a State Budget, the end of the existing Amtrak Agreement on September 30th, the Amtrak Pricing Policy for corridor services, as well as the gaining popularity of Capitol Corridor’s website.

On the first action item of CCJPA FY 11 Budget, staff presented a highlight of the overall budget.  Director Bob Franklin (BART) requested that next time staff breakdown the items, including adding a line item for fuel cost.   Director Gail Murray (BART) asked whether Amtrak has enough funding to support Capitol Corridor.  The question came down to the matter on the next agenda item pertaining to CCJPA/Amtrak FY 11 Fixed Price Operating Agreement. Director Tom Blalock (BART/SJVRC) asked out of concern whether adopting the staff recommendation of the CCJPA FY11 Budget required a “super” majority vote, which would be eleven out of sixteen directors present to adopt those measures. Legal Counsel of BART mentioned that only the Business Plan is the sole CCJPA matter that ever comes before the Board to require eleven directors or more present to adopt such a measure. With Director Blalock having peace of mind settled on that question, the meeting continued with one question from Director Roger Dickinson (SRTD).

The question that was raised was how much was being allocated in the budget towards Union Pacific Incentive Payments.  While the amounts have grown and seem astonishing, David Kutrosky mentioned “these are checks that I love to write.”

  • Year 1: $0
  • Year 2: $2.0 Million
  • Year 3: $2.4 Million
  • Year 4: $2.7 Million Budgeted for CCJPA FY 11 Budget

The CCJPA voted nine to nothing to adopt the CCJPA FY 11 Budget.

The item that perhaps highlighted the meeting, in terms of CCJPA service changes are concerned was the CCJPA item titled “FY2010 FRA High Speed/Intercity Passenger Rail Capital Grant Applications”.  Staff referred to a PowerPoint Presentation that detailed costs and application requirements.  Below are statistics from the presentation:

HSIPR Funding Costs

  • Project A – 1 additional train to/from Auburn
  • Project B – 2 reliability projects (subset of a larger project set to get up to 11 trains to/from San Jose)
  • Projects A+B: $72.70 Million total project costs
  • HSIPR Request: $58.14 Million
  • Matching Funds: $14.56 Million
  • Union Pacific Railroad (UPRR): $10.3 Million
  • Prop 1A: $4.26 Million

HSIPR Application Requirements

  • Service Development Plan
  • Financial Plan
  • National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Documentation
  • Safety Plan
  • Sponsor and Railroad Agreements
  • Engineering/Design Plans
  • Letters of Support

Weekday Service Development Plan (Once CCJPA Receives FRA Award Notice)

  • Eliminate #518 (4:30 A.M. Oakland to Sacramento [Carries Approx. 20 Riders])
  • Extend #538 (3:00 P.M. San Jose to Sacramento) to Auburn arriving at 7:18 P.M.
  • Begin #527 (7:00 A.M. Sacramento to San Jose) in Auburn departing at 5:55 A.M.
  • Consolidate Existing #549 & #551 (6:40 P.M. & 7:40 P.M.) to leave at 7:10 P.M.
  • Note that #549 & #551 are Sacramento to Oakland and would become one train.
  • A 7:10 P.M. departure would allow connections to MotorCoach #4768 in Oakland.
  • #4768 (Oakland to Santa Barbara) connects with #768 which originates in Goleta.

Service Changes Forecasted Results

  • 2% Operating Cost Savings going from 16 to 15 weekday overall roundtrips.
  • 3% Increase in Ridership and Revenue

This writer pointed out that the Fall/Winter timetable change falls on November 8, 2010 and that the Spring/Summer timetable change will likely occur on May 9, 2011 (two days after the next National Train Day).  David Kutrosky mentioned that the proposed service changes will occur on a date uncertain at this time because CCJPA must wait to receive the award from the FRA.

Priscilla Kalugdan spoke on the overall Marketing Program for the CCJPA.   A presentation was made showing a video through BART-TV of how easy it is to use the Richmond Station to transfer from Capitol Corridor to BART.   Another presentation showed the Automated Ticket Validation for the Capitol Corridor trains.   CCJPA expects full ATV deployment in October 2010.  It will then be expanded to the Pacific Surfliner and San Joaquins.

The next meeting CCJPB will be at 10:00 AM on November 17, 2010 at City Council Chambers, Suisun City.

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