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                       WELCOME to the VIRGINIA TRANSIT ASSOCIATION.

 

VTA Upcoming Events:
Sept. 30 – VTA Webinar “Transit Funding Challenges Ahead”
To view the recording or the PowerPoint Presentation, click here
Jan. 26 – VTA Legislative Day and Reception
May 20-21 – VTA Annual Conference; Williamsburg

 

Continuing the conversation on Making the Business Case for Transit
Click here for links to the presentations from the VTA Conference panel and to provide feedback to NVTC and VTA and keep the conversation going.

 

Federal News

House and Senate Pass Continuing Resolutions, Extends Federal Funding to December 2014

9/19/2014

(Download document in Adobe PDF format)

On Sept. 18, the House passed H.J. Res. 124, a short-term continuing resolution (CR) to extend the funding of federal operations until December 11, 2014. All public transportation formula programs are funded at FY2014 levels as are other public transportation related programs, i.e., New Starts, Amtrak, WMATA, transit research/training, etc. The measure passed by a vote of 319-108. The bill includes an amendment, adopted on the House floor, to authorize increased U.S. involvement in Syria to combat the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), as requested by the President. The Senate voted later in the day to approve the CR by a vote of 78-22.

President Obama is expected to sign the measure.

The text of H.J. Res. 124 can be found here.

 

APTA Forum on Triennial Review Reform

Please direct any questions on this subject to Patricia Doersch (pdoersch@apta.com), APTA Legislative Counsel, or Brian Tynan, Director of Government Relations (btynan@apta.com).

 

House Rejects Senate Amendments; Senate Accepts House Bill and Sends Measure to the President

With the action on July 31 by Congress, the bill sent to the President for his signature transfers $10.8 billion into the Highway Trust Fund, allowing the Trust Fund to stay solvent through May 2015, and extends MAP-21 funding authorization and policies for highway, mass transit, and safety programs through May 31, 2015.

Statements made by transportation organizations across surface transportation modes and industries largely called on Congress to continue to seek a long-term solution to the funding challenges regardless of the length of the extension. The statement of APTA President and CEO Michael Melaniphy can be found here.

More information can be found here.

 

APTA’s Annual Meeting and Expo – Oct. 12-15 in Houston, TX
http://www.apta.com/mc/annual/Pages/default.aspx

 

State News

“D.C. to Richmond “ – Southeast High Speed Rail Public Scoping Meetings – Online comments accepted until December 5.

The scoping meetings are to:

  • Kick off and explain the Tier II Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) process.
  • Discuss the purpose and need for improvements.
  • Review project route and potential rail improvements.
  • Identify scope of issues to address.
  • Hear from you!
  • Scoping comments will be accepted until December 5.

The Governor’s Transportation Conference will be held November 12-14, 2014, in Roanoke.  Click here for more information.

 

  Virginia’s Office of Intermodal Planning and Investment (OIPI) will lead the development of the Commonwealth’s long-range multimodal transportation plan – VTrans2040.  The plan will be developed in two phases and will result in the production of two companion documents: the VTrans2040 Vision and the VTrans2040 Multimodal Transportation Plan.

VTrans2040 will identify multimodal needs across the Commonwealth. Moving forward, only projects that help address a need identified in VTrans2040 will be considered for funding under the statewide prioritization process from House Bill 2. The plan will focus on the needs of the Commonwealth’s statewide network of Corridors of Statewide Significance, the multimodal regional networks that support travel within metropolitan regions, and improvements to promote locally designated Urban Development Areas (UDAs).  

http://www.vtrans.org/Vtrans2040.asp

 

Commonwealth Transportation Board Adopts 6 Year Improvement Plan on June 18
The $13.1 billion plan includes the following transit and rail projects:

  • Second passenger train to Lynchburg
  • Two new passenger trains from Richmond to Norfolk
  • Extension of the Tide light rail to Virginia Beach
  • Funding increases in the Metro 2025 program
  • Expansion and addition of VRE platforms

Breakdown of allocations:
$9.9 billion – Highway construction
$3.2 billion – Rail and public transportation
$13.1 billion – total six-year program

 

Local News

Voters strongly support smart growth measures on Election Day 2014
Arlington County, VA voted yes on Bond Referenda 1, 2, and 3, which will fund a variety of transportation, road, pedestrian enhancement and transit projects; local parks and recreation; and neighborhood-identified capital improvement projects (such as sidewalks, curbs and gutters, traffic management, pedestrian enhancements, park improvements, street lighting, recreational facilities, landscaping, and beautification), respectively…read the entire article here.

Blacksburg Transit installs new solar-powered shelter
Blacksburg takes steps towards becoming a greener with the recent installment of its first solar-powered bus shelter…to continue reading, click here.

New road, Tech Center top Newport News manager’s capital improvements list
A new $58 million road to connect Jefferson Avenue and Warwick Boulevard, a new $38.5 million transportation center, and $42.6 million to accommodate for Tech Center at Oyster Point are all projects City Manager Jim Bourey recommends the city start to fund next fiscal year…to continue reading, click here.

Rodney the Ram Rides GRTC!
Each day Monday, November 3, Tuesday, November 4 and Wednesday, November 5, 2014, Richmond region residents will have a chance to find VCU’s Rodney the Ram.  Rodney will be at bus stops closest to one of his favorite destinations that can be found along GRTC bus routes…to continue reading, click here.

Tysons Express OmniRide to continue
The Tysons Express OmniRide commuter bus route, which was at risk of stopping in November, will continue to be operated with the assistance of the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation…to continue reading, click here.

 

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 Virginia Transit Systems Look Forward to New State Funding
Generated by Passage of HB 2313

HB 2313  provides a new, growing annual revenue source, dedicating a portion of the 0.3% increase in the general sales tax to support transit and intercity rail projects in the Commonwealth (0.125%).

What this means for transit:  $65 million in FY14 growing to $84 million by FY18 [($20 million annually IF  Congress passes the Market Place Fairness Act by 2015; $300 million for Dulles Rail from road funds (to reduce project cost/tolls)].
What this means for intercity passenger rail
: $44 million in FY14 growing to $56 million in FY18; $257 million over 5 years.

 Transit Service Delivery Advisory Committee (TSDAC) Recommends New Formula for Distributing HB 2313 Transit Funds

The new transit funds will be distributed by a new formula recommended by the Transit Service Delivery Advisory Committee (TSDAC) to the Commonwealth Transportation Board (CTB).  The Performance-Based Operating Assistance Allocation Implementation Plan is in the public comment period until October 1.  Click  here to view.  The committee is also discussing recommended changes to the capital allocations process.  These changes will be subject to a separate public comment process.

 

barReal estate—residential, commercial or business—that is served by public transportation is valued more highly by the public than similar properties not as well served by transit.

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FAST FACTS on public transportation.

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