Saturday, April 2, 2011

Caltrain Station Closures

The pending closure of our Caltrain stations in the City of San Mateo due to the current fiscal crisis facing Caltrain has generated quite a number of concerned emails and phone calls from many of you.  I wanted to update you on my efforts to help protect Caltrain service in our community. 

Earlier this week, I drafted a resolution that will come before the San Mateo City Council at our Monday, April 4 meeting.  The resolution urges the Caltrain Joint Powers Board (JPB) to postpone consideration of any station closures until the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) is able to complete an effort to find a funding solution that will keep our stations open.  

In summary, the City Council resolution urges Caltrain to delay any decision on station closures until the MTC is able to finish it's work in helping to find funds to keep any stations on the Peninsula from closing.  The MTC became involved in this process earlier this month, and have expressed the opinion that it is "reasonable" to believe a solution will be found to keep our stations open.  

In addition, the City Council resolution highlights the many wonderful projects and policies in San Mateo which are based around Caltrain, as well as highlighting the need of SAMTRANS to protect their current budget to protect crucial bus service in our county for seniors, children, and those without other modes of transportation.   

While I do not have a direct vote on either the Caltrain Joint Powers Board or the SAMTRANS Board of Directors, I was grateful to have the help of the Vice-Chair Omar Ahmad of the Caltrain Board, and Chair Karyl Matsumoto of the SAMTRANS Board.  Both Mr. Ahmad and Ms. Matsumoto have worked tirelessly on this issue, are sensitive to the needs of the City of San Mateo, and helped with the language of the resolution.   

You can view a full version of my proposed resolution and the accompanying memo (which contains a concise history of the current crisis) by clicking on the links below.   

Thank you again for the many letters of concern about this issue, and with your continued support I know we will be successful in protecting sustainable, alternative modes of transportation such as Caltrain both now and into our future.  

To view the RESOLUTION, click HERE.  

To view the memo describing the history of this issue, click HERE.  

To view the MTC report described as "Exhibit A" in my memo, click HERE.

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