Presentation on Comprehensive Transit Reform Civic Academy Series February 2012
The East Baton Rouge Parishtransit system is in crisis Chronic budget crises have created system-wide uncertainty for the last three years. The transit system faces a $2.1 million deficit in 2012 and is set to run out of funding and shut down in July 2012.
Transit Reform Process & DatesFebruary 2011: Together Baton Rouge & Baton Rouge AreaChamber formed Blue Ribbon Commission on TransitJune 2011: Blue Ribbon Commission submits finalrecommendations for comprehensive transit reform. Mayor,Metro Council & CATS endorse its findings.January 2012: CATS calls for transit election and legislativestrategy to implement Blue Ribbon Commission proposal.April 21st, 2012: Election Date for Transit Reform
The System TodayTraffic Congestion Avg. delay per yearU. S. Avg for Mid-size Cities 22 hoursBaton Rouge 37 hoursBaton Rouge rank for congestionamong mid-size U.S. cities 33rd(2010)?# of mid-size cities studied? 33
Projected Traffic Congestion FuturEBR projects traffic congestion will increase to over 70 hours per year in 20 years Traffic Delay per Capita 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0
Projected Traffic Congestion FuturEBR prediction of congested routes in 20 years
The System Today Average wait time between 75 minutes buses? Average total trip time? 2 hours, 20 minutes (Time it takes to drive to Biloxi, MS.) Outdated “spoke” route Essen to Bluebonnet: structure built for cities of 40 5 – 10 minutes by years ago. car, over 2 hours by busHigh-demand areas not O’Neal Lane, Coursey Blvd, Essen & Siegan covered by transit system. Lane
The System TodayPoor Signage and Stops Shelters are in poor condition or do not exist. Poor and uninformative signage at bus stops: no route information; no time information.
Baton Rouge transit funding vs. other southern cities Per capita Peer Cities (2009) funding Atlanta $253 New Orleans $215 Austin $162 Houston $138 Charlotte $134 Knoxville $84 Includes local Little Rock $84 taxes, fares and Raleigh $70 federal funding Memphis $59 Peer City Average $133 Baton Rouge (2009) $32 Baton Rouge (2012) $27Source: National Transit Database, 2009
Why not just raise revenue from theriders? Percent of Peer Cities (2009) funding from fares Peer City Average 14% Baton Rouge (2011) 25%B.R. already has a very high dependence on rider fares for funding
Other cities with dedicated revenue for transit …Akron, OH Bradenton, FL Commerce, CA Fond duAlameda, CA Bremerton, WA Concord, CA Lac, WIAlbuquerque, N Brunswick, OH Corpus Fort Collins, COM Buffalo, NY Christi, TX Fort Myers, FLAmes, IA Burlington, WA Corvallis, OR Fort Smith, ARAnn Arbor, MI Canton, OH Culver City, CA Fort Wayne, INAntioch, CA Cedar Cumberland, M Fort Worth, TXArlington, VA Rapids, IA D Fredericksburg,Asheville, NC Chapel Hill, NC Dallas, TX VAAtlanta, GA Charleston, SC Davenport, IA Gardena, CAAustin, TX Charleston, WV Davis, CA Gary, INBakersfield, CA Charlotte, NC Dayton, OH Glendale, AZBatavia, OH Charlottesville, Denver, CO GrandBay City, MI VA Detroit, MI Forks, NDBellingham, WA Chicago, IL Duluth, MN GrandBenton Cincinnati, OH El Paso, TX Rapids, MIHarbor, MI Cleveland, OH Elk Grove, CA GrandBillings, MT Colorado Everett, WA River, OHBirmingham, AL Springs, CO Fairfield, CA Granite City, IL
MORE cities with dedicated revenue for transit …Great Falls, MT Kent, OH Medford, OR Oxnard, CAGreensboro, N La Mirada, CA Miami, FL Peoria, ILC LaCrosse, WI Minneapolis, M Petaluma, CAGretna, LA Lafayette, IN N Phoenix, AZHanford, CA Lakeland, FL Missoula, MT Pinole, CAHesperia, CA Lancaster, CA Moline, IL Pittsburgh, PAHighland Lansing, MI Montebello, CA PompanoFalls, NY Laredo, TX Monterey, CA Beach, FLHolland, MI Largo, MD Murfreesboro, T Port Huron, MIHouston, TX Las Cruces, NM N PortHuntington, WV Lawrence, KS Napa, CA Washington, WIIndianapolis, IN Lewisville, TX New Porterville, CAIowa City, IA Lexington, KY Orleans, LA Portland, ORJackson, MI Livermore, CA New York, NY Providence, RIJacksonville, FL Logan, UT Norwalk, CA RedondoJefferson Lompoc, CA Oakland, CA Beach, CACity, MO Long Oceanside, CA Richland, WAKalamazoo, MI Beach, CA Olympia, WA Riverside, CAKansas Los Omaha, NE Rockville, MD
STILL MORE cities with dedicated revenue for transit …Sacramento, CA Santa Monica, CA Tempe, AZ Wenatchee, WASaginaw, MI Santa Rosa, CA Thousand West Covina, CASalem, OR Savannah, GA Oaks, CA West PalmSan Antonio, TX Scottsdale, AZ Thousand Beach, FLSan Seattle, WA Palms, CA Wheeling, WVBernardino, CA Sioux City, IA Toledo, OH Winston-San Carlos, CA South Bend, IN Topeka, KS Salem, NCSan Diego, CA Spokane, WA Tucson, AZ Woodland, CASan Francisco, CA Springfield, IL Union City, CA Yakima, WASan Jose, CA St. Cloud, MN Urbana, IL Youngstown, OHSan Juan, PR St. Johns, MI Vallejo, CASanta St. Joseph, MO Valparaiso, IN No dedicatedBarbara, CA St. Paul, MN Vancouver, WA funding meansSanta Clarita, CA St. Petersburg, FL Ventura, CASanta Cruz, CA Stockton, CA Visalia, CA losing millions inSanta Fe, NM Sugar Land, TX Washington, DC federal match-Santa Maria, CA Tampa, FL Waterloo, IA funding & grants.
How does LSU Tiger Trails do it? When LSU left the CATS system, it created a dedicated revenue source through a fee on student tuitions. Funding for LSU tiger trails = $132 per capita for its service area. (compared to Southern Metro average of $133 and CATS funding of $32)
Election to create dedicated revenue source for transit Election Date: April 21st, 2012 Municipalities included: Baton Rouge, Baker and Zachary Only voters in city limits are eligible to vote on or pay the proposed tax. Each election is held separately. Success or failure in any municipality does not affect other elections. Cost depends upon home value Rates, Revenue and Cost per Household Value of Cost per Dedicated Property Avg cost per Home month Average house Revenue Tax rate household per $50,000 $4.42 value by area Amount (mills) month $75,000 $6.63Baton Rouge $16,663,200 10.6 $14 $157,100 $100,000 $8.83Baker $636,000 10.6 $10 $110,074 $125,000 $11.04Zachary $1,144,800 10.6 $16 $180,518 $150,000 $13.25TOTAL $18,444,000 $200,000 $17.67 $300,000 $26.50
How does the proposed rate for transit compare to other dedicated revenue sources in our City-Parish? Other EBR-area millage rates Proposed rate for Parish Library 11.1 mills transit: 10.6 mills BREC 14.46 mills Average for fire districts 18.65 mills Downtown Dev District 10 mills Baker Schools 43.2 mills EBR Schools 43.45 mills Zachary Schools 79.2 mills
I. Service Improvements Decrease wait times between buses from the current average of 75 minutes to 15 minutes (at peak hours) Build 3 new transfer centers to replace “spoke” system with “grid” system , to allow easy transfers systemwide. Overhaul bus stops, with new shelters and benches Overhaul all signage for transit stops, providing detailed route and time information Add GPS tracking to fleet, with exact arrival times accessible on cell phones Increase service from 19 to 37 routes, including high-demand areas that currently are not served (eg. O’Neal Lane, Coursey Blvd., Essen and Siegen Lane) Increase peak-hour buses from 32 to 57. Create eight new express and limited stop lines: Express Routes Serving Southern University, Airport, O’Neal Lane, Mall of Louisiana, Highland / I-110 and Downtown Limited Stop Routes Baker/Zachary through Southern University, Florida Blvd, LSU to Downtown Lay foundation for Bus Rapid Transit system
II. Governance Reform Overhaul selection process for CATS board members (following recommendations of Blue Ribbon Commission) Remove Metro Council from operational decisions such as routes and fares, in line with best practices nationally. Legislation has been introduced for 2012 legislative session.
III. Accountability CATS will adhere to and publicize concrete benchmarks and timeline of deliverables for service improvement. Together Baton Rouge will meet EVERY THREE MONTHS to hold CATS accountable for delivery according to timeline. 2012 July – September: First wave of new bus purchases (10 – 15 buses). GPS system is installed and functional. October – December: Expand bus shelters by at least 25. Install new bus signs with route info. 2013 January – March: Expand CATS bus pass sales locations. April – June: Continue expansion of bus shelters. July – September: Second wave of new bus purchases (15 – 20 buses) October – December: Community-wide meetings on new routes and services. 2014 January – March: Implement expanded routes and decreased wait times.
How will transit reform affect Bakerand Zachary?In addition to general system changes Better connectivity to jobs and medical facilities in Baton Rouge and between Baker and Zachar. Decrease wait times from 90 minutes to 30-40 minutes during peak hours. New Express Service from Baker and Zachary to CATS central terminal, via I-110. New service to the Metro Airport. New circulator service within Baker and Zachary. Expanded paratransit service for elderly and disabled (very large demand for this service in Baker).
Proposed Baker and Zachary Routes routes and express line to BatonNew circulator Rouge.
The paratransit systemserves people withdisabilities
How will transit reformaffect paratransit services?Paratransit coverage Currently, paratransitdepends on the fixed route service is available insystem: service is provided 60% of EBR Parish.within 3/4 of a mile from allfixed routes.If transit reform If the electionpasses on April fails, ALL paratransit21st, paratransit service will come to anservice will expand to end since there will be70% of EBR Parish no more fixed routeand 90% of Baton system.Rouge, Baker andZachary.