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2020-2024 Strategic Plan Overview

The purpose of the San Mateo County Transportation Authority (TA) 2020-2024 Strategic Plan is to provide the policy framework and guidance for implementing both the ongoing Measure A Transportation Programs and the TA administered portion of the new Measure W Congestion Relief Plan.

In 1988, San Mateo County voters approved Measure A, a 20-year half-cent sales tax to fund and leverage additional funding for transportation projects and programs in San Mateo County. The approval of Measure A created the TA to manage and administer the sales tax revenues generated in conformance with the Transportation Expenditure Plan (TEP). The 1988 sales tax expired on December 31, 2008. In 2004, the San Mateo County voters reauthorized the Measure A half-cent sales tax and a new TEP for an additional 25 years (from January 1, 2009 through December 31, 2033). The TEP describes programs and projects, as identified by the cities, local agencies and citizens of San Mateo County, and includes funding for multiple modes to help meet the County’s transportation needs.

It also requires the TA to develop a Strategic Plan and update it every five years. The current plan covers the 2014 -2019 calendar years.

In 2018, the San Mateo County voters approved Measure W, a 30-year half cent sales tax, from July 1, 2019 through June 30, 2038, to fund and leverage additional funding for transportation projects and programs in San Mateo County that are consistent with Measure W, which consists of the San Mateo County Congestion Relief Plan. Though the San Mateo County Transit District (District) will be levying the tax and administering investments for 50% of the program with the County Public Transportation Systems category in Measure W’s Congestion Relief Plan, the TA will be responsible for administering the other categories, which make up the remaining 50 percent of the measure: Countywide Highway Congestion Improvements; Local Safety, Pothole and Congestion Relief Improvements including Grade Separations; Bicycle and Pedestrian Improvements; and Regional Transit Connections.

The Measure W Congestion Relief Plan also tasks the TA with developing a Strategic Plan to cover the categories it is responsible for administering with broad based public outreach. Work is underway to prepare one Strategic Plan covering the 2020-2024 timeframe that collectively addresses the administration and implementation of Measure A and the portion of Measure W that the TA is tasked with administering.

Based on revenue projected to be received as part of the proposed FY 2020 Budget, each measure will generate approximately $91 million per year.

Technical Analysis

The policy framework of the Strategic Plan will respect the integrity of and incorporate both the Measure A vision/goals and the Measure W Core Principles.

The planning process for the Strategic Plan will focus on the following activities:

  • Review of past progress/accomplishments and ongoing challenges
  • Best practices review of other transportation sales tax program policy and implementation frameworks
  • Review of San Mateo County demographic and land use trends, travel patterns, projections and new emerging mobility services
  • Identification of relevant links with other regional plans and planning efforts such as the San Mateo Countywide Transportation Plan
  • Preparation of financial projections and consideration of alternative funding mechanisms
  • Review of existing Measure A program and project selection processes, assessment of potential modifications, and development of Measure W program and project selection processes and potential integration opportunities
  • Development of recommendations to further improve program and project implementation, including but not limited to, the timely delivery of projects
  • Development of evaluation tools to improve how performance of various project types is assessed during project selection processes

The strategic planning process commenced in March 2019 and will be completed prior to the end of the calendar year.

Policy Framework

The updated Plan will provide an implementation framework for both Measure A and Measure W programs. This will include development of a project selection processes and evaluation criteria that will build from a review of current Measure A evaluation criteria as well as developing criteria that support the Measure W Core Principles. This policy framework will be the tool that allows the TA and decision makers to administer funds effectively while ensuring a simple and easy process for project sponsors and applicants pursuing funding.

Recommendations and Assessment Tools

The 2020-2024 Strategic Plan will also provide recommendations for program effectiveness based on an analysis of Measure A performance to improve administration over the next five years. The update process will explore the development of tools for assessing project effectiveness in meeting the principles, goals, and objectives of Measures A and W and the Strategic Plan.

Plan Adoption

The estimated timing for seeking adoption of the 2020-2024 Strategic Plan will be in November 2019.

Community Engagement and Outreach

Community engagement and outreach is integral to the Strategic Plan update and is occurring at multiple points in the process through a variety of channels and media to ensure a well-informed plan that addresses the diverse interests and needs of the County. Outreach efforts include:

  • Stakeholder Advisory Group (SAG) Engagement made up of representatives from non-profits, large employers and business groups, and transit and constituent advocacy groups.
  • Technical Advisory Group (TAG) Engagement made up of staff from cities and agencies throughout San Mateo County.
  • San Mateo County Transportation Authority Board of Directors and Citizen’s Advisory Committee Meetings
  • Updates to the County Board of Supervisors
  • Town Hall Meetings
  • Pop-Up Events
  • Online Engagement