I attended the November 16, 2018 San Joaquin JPA Board Meeting in Merced. Here is a summary:
- Administrative items were approved including moving expense items from one budget account to another.
- The Board gave recognition to board members Don Tatzin and Tom Blalock who will be leaving the Board due to retirements.
- The City of Oakley gave a presentation on recent downtown improvement projects in the vicinity of the upcoming new San Joaquin stop at Oakley.
- Schedule changes were discussed.
o A Temporary Schedule Change Targeted for Dec 17th:
o Start the early morning express at 4.45AM (20 min. later) and arrive in Sacramento at 7:56AM.
o Friday-Sunday, extend train 718 (last train out of Oakland) that currently stops in Fresno, all the way to Bakersfield
o Friday-Sunday, run both Sacramento-bound trains from Bakersfield (Arriving in Sacramento at 11:15AM and 3:24PM.
o A full review and analysis of the schedule including On Time Performance issues, train meets, schedule padding, and connections in Los Angeles will be done with the goal of a permanent schedule change sometime in April.
- A resolution was passed to reinstitute the Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodal Center (ARTIC) as a Thruway Bus Stop as well as Remove San Juan Capistrano as a Thruway Bus Stop on Route 1 and to Relocate the Vallejo Thruway Bus Stop on Route 7 to the Curtola Park & Ride Transit Facility.
- Staff presented a short analysis of Thruway Route 7 which serves Santa Rosa, Healdsburg (where I live) and the North Coast. There is a push to increase ridership on this route with the first step being the attached flyer. I mentioned during public comment that the three county (Mendocino, Humboldt, Del Norte) population is less than 250,000 so there is a limited market to draw from. That said, the bus route is a very important connection to this often forgotten part of California. I offered to help staff in any way I could. Staff presented the idea to move bus stops to SMART train stations in Sonoma County, a position RailPAC should fully support. There was then a discussion of the Perata Law which would prohibit North Coast bus passengers from transferring to SMART. Yet another reason to change or eliminate this law.
- Updates were given by staff on various projects and improvements.
The next SJJPA meeting will be held January 25, 2019 in Fresno