TAC Meeting Minutes for June 17, 2014


FAIRFAX COUNTY TRANSPORTATION ADVISORY COMMISSION (TAC)
Meeting Summary

Regular MeetingJune 17, 2014 at 7:30 PM – FCDOT, 4050 Legato Rd, Fairfax, VA 22033

TAC Members in Attendance: Chairman Jeff Parnes (Sully), Vice Chairman Jenifer Joy Madden (Hunter Mill), Secretary Roger Hoskin (Mason), Kevin Morse (Braddock), Mike Champness (Dranesville), Micah Himmel (Providence), Frank Cohn (Mt. Vernon), and Ann Pimley (Fairfax Area Disability Board).

TAC Members in Abstance: Edson Tennyson (At Large), Harry Zimmerman (Lee), and Eric Thiel (Springfield).

Others in Attendance: FCDOT staff: Calvin Lam, Todd Wigglesworth. Department of Cable and Consumer Services (DCCS): Susan Hafeli and Steve Sinclair.

The meeting was called to order by Chairman Parnes at 7:35 p.m. The minutes of the last meeting were unanimously approved.

Note Taker:  Kevin Morse


Main Topics Discussed

Preliminary Evaluation of Taxicab Fare Increase

Susan Hafeli of DCCS briefed the TAC on the 2014 Taxicab Rate Review Report. There are five authorized taxicab companies in Fairfax County. There are 654 taxicabs and 832 license drivers in FY 2013. The taxicab rates are governed by County Code. The evaluation factors are the County code (change in Fairfax County Taxicab Industry Price Index plus or minus 2%) and other economic factors. Illegal taxicabs and Uber have had a significant impact on the taxicab industry. Also, there are concerns about public safety and wheelchair accessibility. Enforcement responsibility is under the police department, not DCCS.

Ms. Hafeli presented a three-part rate change: increase drop charge from $3.25 to $3.50; increase per-mile rate from $2.10 to $2.16; decrease the mileage increment from 1/7th mile to 1/6th mile. The goal is to balance the interests of drivers and customers and maintain taxi rates comparable to those charged in the region. The public hearing for taxicab rate increase will be held by the Consumer Protection Commission at the Government Center on August 19, 2014 at 7:30 pm.

Following the presentation, TAC members had the following questions and discussion:
• When asked how the Uber rates compared to taxicab rates, Ms. Hafeli replied that Uber rate is about 2/3 of regular taxicab rate, but Uber premium is 20% over taxicab. Uber taxis have been fined by DMV and only the police can issue tickets. Uber does not affect the proposed taxicab rate yet. There is no plan to make Uber a legal service.
• Staff analyzed various rate increases within the region.
• The coupon books for taxicab are only for seniors. The subsidized fares are only for seniors and the disabled community.
• Issues with cross jurisdiction rates.

Preparation for 2014 Bond Referendum

Todd Wigglesworth, FCDOT, gave a briefing on the 2014 Bond Referendum. On June 17, 2014, the Board authorized $100 million transportation bond reference to be held on November 4, 2014. The $100 million bond referendum is one of many funding sources identified to fund over $1.4 billion in transportation priorities over the next six years. Staff recommends that the bond will be used for spot improvement projects, bicycle/trail and pedestrians projects. The bonds are the most flexible source of revenue. On June 24, 2014, the County Attorney will send a petition to the Circuit Court to schedule a transportation bond referendum on November 4, 2014.

Following the presentation, TAC members had the following questions and discussion:

• These are the projects on the list that were previously approved by the Board.
• The political ramifications of using bonds for bike/pedestrian projects.
• Issue with bike/pedestrian projects to reduce congestion.
• The necessity for issuing the bonds when the County had already increased the Sales tax by 0.5%.
• New projects have bike/pedestrian built in. The bonds will be used to build the missing links.
• The TAC would like to consider sending a letter to the State Delegation supporting a law that would require vehicles to stop for pedestrians at crosswalks.
• Chris Wells, County Pedestrian Manager, and Noelle Dominguez, Legislative Liaison, will contact and advise TAC Chair on this issue.
• Bond referendum will be publicized by social media and electronic format will be available. Information will be on the County’s website.
• TAC members advised to send the brochures (about the bond referendum) to major political parties, Board Members’ newsletters, etc.

TAC Election Subcommittee

Commissioner Cohn was the appointed Chair for the TAC Election Subcommittee. The TAC members unanimously voted for the current officers for another term:

  • Jeff Parnes – Chairman
  • Jenifer Joy Madden – Vice Chair
  • Roger Hoskin – Secretary

Annual TAC Transportation Achievement Award

The Award announcement was approved and will be posted on the County’s Newslink for employees. The deadline for nominations will be August 1, 2014. The Award Selection Sub-Committee members are Micah Himmel, Mike Champness, and Ann Pimley.

Feedback from the Previous TAC Meeting:

There were questions about the role of the Transit Rider’s Advisory Committee (TRAC) and relationship between TAC and TRAC. The Board wanted to create an advisory group consists of consumers, not experts or planners. The deadline for the two surveys (TRAC and Comp. Plan) was extended to Friday, June 20, 2104.

Time will be devoted at the next TAC meeting for discussion of a possible future TRAC.

Other Business

Vice Chair Madden will host a meeting on August 5 (with October 7 as the alternate date) with the Trail & Sidewalk Committee to view a video of the keynote address from the county’s Active Transportation Summit given by nationally-known Walkable Communities expert, Mark Fenton.

Vice Chair Madden also would like a briefing on Route 7 Core widening.

Commissioner Morse proposed a tour of Dulles Airport.

Topics for Future Meetings:

• July 15, 2014: Bike Master Plan – Charlie Strunk, FCDOT
• August 5, 2014 (Work Session with Trail & Sidewalk Committee): to view video
• August 19, 2014: Wayfinding/Signage – Randy Dittberner, VDOT
• September 16, 2014: Countywide Transit Network Study and Route 1 Multimodal Alternatives Analysis – Tom Burke (FCDOT)
• October 7, 2014 (Work Session with Trail & Sidewalk Committee): view video – Alternate Date
• October 21, 2014: Seven Corners Revitalization Project
• November 18, 2014: Route 7 Core Widening
• December 16, 2014: Comprehensive Plan and Transportation staff and Planning Commission discussions with TAC on what their vision is for future development and any changes in planning and zoning guidelines that may be needed to account for future work environment given the pace and impacts of technology advances (including guest speaker to explain impact of self-driving/smart cars, buses and trucks on traffic, roadways and intersections)
• January 20, 2015: Comprehensive Plan and Transportation staff and Planning Commission discussions with TAC on how planning for areas currently planned for future rail stations reflects the designation of the areas as future rail stations
• February 17, 2015: CTB Determination of Corridor of Statewide Importance through Loudoun/Prince William Counties

Closing and Adjournment

Adjourned: The meeting was adjourned as 9:55 p.m.

Upcoming Events:

September 16, 2014        10:00 am        Board Transportation Committee Meeting
December 9, 2014           10:00 am        Board Transportation Committee Meeting

Upcoming Meetings:

July 1, 2014                           7:30 pm              TAC Work Session (FCDOT)
July 15, 2014                         7:30 pm              TAC Regular Meeting (FCDOT)

August 5, 2014                      7:30 pm              TAC Work Session (FCDOT)
August 19, 2014                    7:30 pm              TAC Regular Meeting (FCDOT)

September 2, 2014               7:30 pm             TAC Work Session (FCDOT)
September 16, 2014             7:30 pm             TAC Regular Meeting (FCDOT)

October 7, 2014                     7:30 pm             TAC Work Session (FCDOT)
October 21, 2014                   7:30 pm             TAC Regular Meeting (FCDOT)

November 4, 2014                 7:30 pm             TAC Work Session (FCDOT)
November 18, 2014               7:30 pm             TAC Regular Meeting (FCDOT)

December 2, 2014                 7:30 pm             TAC Work Session (FCDOT)
December 16, 2014               7:30 pm             TAC Regular Meeting (FCDOT)

 


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