State and Federal Relations Overview

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  • State and Federal Relations

  • The State and Federal Relations Department serves as OCTA’s liaison with Members of the California State Legislature and the United States Congress. The department is responsible for securing state and federal funding, influencing legislative and regulatory actions, and assisting in the development and execution of the OCTA Board of Directors approved legislative agendas for Sacramento and Washington D.C.. Following the adoption of the annual state and federal legislative platforms, the department works to promote transportation needs, funding priorities, and policies that enable OCTA to provide the right mix of programs and services to fit the needs of the county and maximize the return of state and federal funding to OCTA. The department works with state and federal agencies, state and national advocacy groups, transit operators, environmental advocates, labor leaders, business advocacy groups, and other industry stakeholders to advance policies, programs, industry-wide legislative and regulatory actions that benefit Orange County.
    • Goals: Fiscal Year 2016-2017
      • Continue to provide federal and state advocacy for the transition of LOSSAN operating authority to the new joint powers authority structure.
      • Advocate for transportation reauthorization legislation which provides a stable and reliable source of multi-year funding, and provides a fair share of funding to Orange County.
      • Support efforts to implement the provisions of MAP-21 in an equitable manner that promotes traditional funding levels, programming roles, and local discretion in allocation decisions.
      • Advocate for programs and policies that allow OCTA to deliver its projects and services, maintaining local control to ensure that services are delivered in the most efficient and effective manner.
      • Advocate for reasonable and cost-sensitive implementation of zero-emission bus regulations. Continue to support efforts to bring federal and state road and highway regulations related bus vehicle weight into conformity with current vehicles and requirements
      • Collaborate with regional stakeholders to expand CEQA process improvements for all modes of transportation projects.
      • Ensure that regional goods movement policy and funding issues are addressed in any new federal transportation reauthorization legislation.
      • Collaborate with regional stakeholders on various policy areas such as the implementation of the cap and trade program and seek to align revenues with transportation projects.
    • Accomplishments: Fiscal Year 2015-2016
      • The Federal Transit Administration issued a Finding of No Significant Impact for the environmental assessment/final environmental impact report, clearing the OC Streetcar project to advance into the design phase.
      • The final interagency transfer agreement (ITA) between the LOSSAN Caltrans Division of Rail and Mass Transportation was approved by the Secretary of the California State Transportation Agency.
      • Supported the passage of Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act, which is the first law enacted in over ten years that provides long-term funding certainty for surface transportation and legislative action to extend the alternative fuel tax credit to all of 2015 and 2016.
      • Secured legislation that revised the cap-and-trade funded Transit and Intercity Rail Capital Program to allow for improvements that will ensure investments are made in transformative transit and rail capital projects, improve mobility, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
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