Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

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Anondson
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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby Anondson » March 3rd, 2017, 5:59 pm

Vote delayed until Wednesday March 8th.

http://finance-commerce.com/2017/03/tra ... akup-vote/

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby Vagueperson » March 3rd, 2017, 7:36 pm

It's interesting to read in there the massive differences between Ramsey County and Hennepin County. I imagine this is due to both their relative size and wealth gaps.

I also noticed this part: "McLaughlin said the half-cent tax would benefit major projects like the $1.8 billion Southwest Light Rail Transit line, the $1.536 billion Bottineau LRT line and the $150 million Orange Line bus rapid transit project."
These high-dollar lines are not Ramsey County projects. So if Ramsey County is able to increase to .5 cent sales tax and focus on funding its own projects, might this help to speed up Gateway, Riverview, Rush, and other aBRT lines?

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby Silophant » March 3rd, 2017, 7:47 pm

Well, it'd probably speed up Riverview. Like you said, the weird thing about the CTIB is Hennepin is sooo much bigger than the other counties, providing more income than the other four combined. So, Hennepin doubling its tax income lets it fund two LRTs and a BRT, but Ramsey doing the same thing will probably only let it fund a single LRT project and maybe some aBRTs.

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby twincitizen » March 9th, 2017, 8:26 am

CTIB voted to break up. Now each of the 5 counties must vote to disband. It sounds like Dakota County is unhappy with the current deal and is likely to vote against disbanding CTIB until they get a higher payout (which is ironic since they previously voted to leave CTIB and would be able to do so sooner under the breakup scenario).
http://finance-commerce.com/2017/03/tra ... y-objects/
http://www.startribune.com/transit-boar ... 415716844/
The county claims CTIB owes it $29 million, while other CTIB members say the correct amount is $16.5 million.

CTIB Chair Peter McLaughlin, who is also a Hennepin County commissioner, noted that the amount set aside for Dakota County was sweetened in recent days, increasing from $13.3 million to $16.5 million. “It’s time for Dakota County to get off the number they’ve been on for weeks if we’re going to get to an agreement,” he said.
I'm guessing Hennepin and Ramsey Counties will each chip an extra million or so to make Dakota County shut up and take the deal.

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby talindsay » March 9th, 2017, 8:33 am

Given the specific constraints currently in place it *does* make sense for the CTIB to disband, but this is definitely a blow to regionalism. It means that Hennepin and Ramsey will largely be going it alone, occasionally working together on specific projects that benefit both counties but rarely looping in the other metro counties. Regionalism has its faults, and I think urban transit is likely to be better served by the two core counties without the fully-suburban counties being involved, but the idea that the metro area could unite to support metro-area transit was a really nice one. It helped give things such as the Riverview Line credibility that it desperately needs, and it helped strengthen a sense that Washington County really is part of the metro. I'm sorry to see it go, even if the new model (or lack thereof) actually serves Hennepin County better.

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby twincitizen » March 9th, 2017, 8:49 am

Seems like a blow to regionalism on paper maybe, but I'm not what actual setbacks or losses there will be in the real world. We still have the Met Council / Metro Transit that actually engineers, builds, and operates the transit system. The counties are just the funding vehicle for these transitways. Even with CTIB in place, the individual counties were still wholly responsible for pre-project development, alternatives analysis, route & mode selection, etc. CTIB was just an additional (often cumbersome and dysfunctional) layer of government that we don't need. I won't miss the infighting, the fact that CTIB effectively operated in the shadows, etc. County boards already operate without much public awareness or oversight. CTIB took that invisibility a step further (to borderline secrecy), and I don't think we'll miss it at all.

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby twincitizen » March 16th, 2017, 6:25 am

Hennepin County to hold a public hearing on the sales tax increase on Tuesday March 21 at 1:30pm, in the Board Room (A-2400) of the Hennepin County Government Center, 300 S. Sixth St., Minneapolis.

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby Qhaberl » March 16th, 2017, 8:18 am

I am keeping my fingers crossed, but I really hope that 100% of the funding that Hennepin County generates from the tax increase, will be dedicated to transit, and only transit.


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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby twincitizen » March 16th, 2017, 8:24 am

That is the main concern, for sure. A secondary concern I'd like to bring before the board is to ensure that the money will be used on Arterial BRT projects, which CTIB refused to do.

I believe the state law that authorizes this 0.5% sales tax requires a specific list of projects to be constructed - that is to say, it can't just be a general fund for the county's transportation budget. I'd like to see that list.

We know the "big three" are on it:
Green Line ext
Blue Line ext
Orange Line

Also, Hennepin County's reported 30% share of Riverview (I assume that's 30% of the local portion, not 30% of the project total)

It will also be used to fund roughly half(?) of the operating costs of all current and future lines. I believe the state currently chips in half of the operating costs of the current LRT lines, though that could certainly be reduced going forward, leaving the counties and Met Council to fully fund operations without state involvement.

So what else?
Penn Ave N aBRT (C Line) and Lake Street aBRT (B Line) are good bets, since they are on Hennepin County roads.
Chicago Fremont (D Line) I am less sure of. It doesn't run on any Hennepin County roads, and is damn expensive (for a bus project) at $77M. I could see Hennepin County contributing something, but not being a major partner in this project.

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby David Greene » March 16th, 2017, 9:40 am

Midtown LRT!

I could imagine the county and city sharing costs on this one. If it interlines with the Green Line extension the county might be willing to pay a higher share.

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby twincitizen » March 16th, 2017, 2:02 pm

Hennepin County is about to replace the Portland and Cedar bridges, and:
The new bridges, slated to open by Thanksgiving, will mimic the old ones, although the vertical support piers will be aesthetic rather than functional and could be removed if transit is later approved for the corridor.
So no, Midtown rail is not happening anytime soon. If it were, why build the fake piers at all? As much as I agree that it's a slam dunk, no-brainer of a transit investment (especially if <$300MM), it's probably still a generation away. Especially if Hennepin County is going to be possibly be picking up the federal share of Bottineau, etc (see Trump budget killing off the FTA New Starts program). Once/if we've completed the Blue and Green extensions, Orange Line, B, C, D (and E and F, whatever they may be), and ensure that the 0.5% sales tax is enough to fund all of these lines, then we can bring up Midtown rail again. For at least the next decade though, the Lake St aBRT is all we're gonna get in this corridor. Even if in 2020 we return to total DFL control of MN, increase the transit sales tax another .25%; and elect a Democratic President who resurrects New Starts, Small Starts, and TIGER funding at the FTA, rail in the Greenway is probably 10-15 years away at the least.

Let's not derail (heh) the CTIB thread with fantasy routings along rail corridors that won't exist for at least a decade+

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby FISHMANPET » March 16th, 2017, 2:09 pm

The piers don't necessarily have to be removed for rail service (though it's an option if routing requires obviously). The bigger win is that since they're non structural, they don't have to be reinforced to prevent a structural failure of the bridge if a train were to derail and strike the pier. So even if rail is built tomorrow, the fake piers would stay as long as there's room otherwise for the tracks.
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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby David Greene » March 30th, 2017, 10:38 am

It could still dissolve in 2018, assuming Anoka plays ball, right? Dakota will be out then.

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby mattaudio » March 30th, 2017, 11:38 am

Yes, CTIB can be a party of one (Dakota) if everyone leaves, right?

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby twincitizen » March 30th, 2017, 12:22 pm

Dakota has already voted to leave. Dissolving CTIB would have gotten them out a year earlier. They will be out of CTIB at the end of 2018, and the 4 remaining counties could again vote to dissolve CTIB then. But that means Ramsey and Hennepin Counties forego at least a year of additional sales taxes.

Dakota County claims they are owed another $29MM, while CTIB offered $13MM, mostly from Hennepin County's pot. Can we just meet Dakota halfway, as unfair and wrongheaded as they're being? That potential extra $8MM payout from Hennepin County will quickly be recouped within the first half-year of tax collection (7/1/17-12/31/17). Hennepin County is slated to collect about $30MM in new tax revenue just over that time frame, plus another $60MM in 2018. I guess I don't mind Hennepin County handing over an extra $8MM "bribe" now in order to get the remaining $82MM. This just needs to be done.

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby Tcmetro » March 30th, 2017, 12:54 pm

IMO, it's pretty ridiculous to allow Dakota County to strongarm the other counties for money that will probably end up expanding roads.

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby SkyScraperKid » March 31st, 2017, 12:36 am

Dakota Co. votes to leave the club, then when the club wants to disband, Dakota blocks them? Wait, I thought they give up the right to vote when they moved to leave the club?


...so does that mean Dakota is staying in the club?

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby RailBaronYarr » March 31st, 2017, 8:11 am

No, they're still on track to leave CTIB at the end of 2018. As twincitizen notes, the separate vote to disband the entire CTIB earlier would have been better for everyone - Dakota County would have saved money compared to sticking in CTIB until EOY 2018 and the other CTIB members could have begun collecting more revenue to more than make up for the loss of Dakota County's revenue share.

So, technically yeah Dakota is still in until end of 2018, but they're on their way out. But they still have a vote in matters regarding board business (like voting to disband).

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Re: Counties Transit Improvement Board (CTIB)

Postby Qhaberl » March 31st, 2017, 10:22 am

It pains me to say this, but I guess at this point, the best thing for Hennepin to do is to just give Dakota County the money they want. Someone else said it earlier. Hennepin county really needs the transportation tax. Especially with things being so crazy at the legislature, both state and national.


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