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SENATE DOCKET, NO. 1144         FILED ON: 1/18/2013

SENATE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 1707

 

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts

_________________

PRESENTED BY:

Karen E. Spilka

_______________

To the Honorable Senate and House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in General
              Court assembled:

              The undersigned legislators and/or citizens respectfully petition for the adoption of the accompanying bill:

An Act providing for public input into public transit decisions.

_______________

PETITION OF:

 

Name:

District/Address:

Karen E. Spilka

Second Middlesex and Norfolk

John F. Keenan

Norfolk and Plymouth

Sal N. DiDomenico

Middlesex and Suffolk

Barry R. Finegold

Second Essex and Middlesex

William M. Straus

10th Bristol

Carolyn C. Dykema

8th Middlesex

Chris Walsh

6th Middlesex

Kenneth J. Donnelly

Fourth Middlesex

James B. Eldridge

Middlesex and Worcester

James J. O'Day

14th Worcester

Patricia D. Jehlen

Second Middlesex

Denise Provost

27th Middlesex


SENATE DOCKET, NO. 1144        FILED ON: 1/18/2013

SENATE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 1707

By Ms. Spilka, a petition (accompanied by bill, Senate, No. 1707) of Karen E. Spilka, John F. Keenan, Sal N. DiDomenico, Barry R. Finegold and other members of the General Court for legislation to provide for public input into public transit decisions.  Transportation. 


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts
 

_______________

In the Year Two Thousand Thirteen

_______________

 

An Act providing for public input into public transit decisions.
 

              Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:
 

              SECTION 1.  Subparagraph (b) of section 2 of chapter 6C of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2010 Official Edition most recently amended by section 3 of chapter 242 of the Acts of 2012, is hereby amended in the second sentence by striking the figure ‘7’ and  inserting in place thereof the figure ‘9’

              SECTION 2.  Subparagraph (b) of section 2 of chapter 6C of the General Laws, as so appearing, is hereby further amended in the second sentence by adding at the end there of the following: 

              ; at least 1 director shall be a person who regularly rides public transit (at least 100 trips per year) and who is not employed by the commonwealth; and at least 1 director shall be a labor union representative chosen from a list of at least 3 persons nominated by the Massachusetts State AFL-CIO.

              SECTION 3.  Section 2 of chapter 6C of the General Laws, as so appearing is hereby further amended by inserting at the end of the section the following sentence:

              Each meeting shall provide a sufficient opportunity for public comment.

              SECTION 4. Section 5 of chapter 161B as appearing in the 2010 Official Edition of the General Laws is hereby amended by striking out the first sentence of the second paragraphs and inserting in place thereof:

              One representative of the disabled commuter population who uses the services of the authority and is eligible to use the paratransit services of the authority shall serve on the advisory board for a 1 year term and shall have 1 vote on the advisory board plus additional votes or fractions thereof needed to equal the number of votes determined to be available to the member municipality which has the smallest number of votes on the advisory board.

              SECTION 5. Section 5 of chapter 161B as appearing in the 2010 Official Edition of the General Laws is hereby amended by inserting after the first paragraph the following two paragraphs:

              Two persons, or the number of persons reflecting 10 percent of the number of municipalities served by the transit authority, whichever is greater, shall serve on the advisory board as voting members representative of the transit riding population. These transit rider representatives shall be regular riders of public transit service (at least 100 trips per year) provided by the transit authority. At least 50 per cent of said transit rider representatives shall be transit-dependent. Each transit rider representative shall be appointed for a 2 year term and shall have 1 vote on the advisory board plus additional votes or fractions thereof needed to equal the number of votes determined to be available to the member municipality which has the smallest number of votes on the advisory board. Every city or town in the region, on a rotating basis as determined by the board, shall appoint a transit rider representative successively, provided that there shall be one transit rider representative from each community that has at least 40 per cent of the population in the region served by the authority. The mayor or city manager and the chairman, town manager or town administrator shall appoint a transit rider resident of their city or town. The representative of a city or town may be reappointed after representatives from the other cities and towns within the region have served their 2 year terms.

              The governor shall appoint 2 persons to the advisory board who are representatives of labor unions, from a list of at least 6 persons nominated by the Massachusetts State AFL-CIO and its regional councils. The appointments shall reflect the various transit modes operated by the authority. Each appointment shall be for a 1 year term. Such persons shall each have 1 vote on the advisory board plus additional votes or fractions thereof needed to equal the number of votes determined to be available to the member municipality which has the smallest number of votes on the advisory board.

              SECTION 6. Section 5 of chapter 161B is hereby further amended by inserting at the end thereof the following paragraph:

              Each meeting of the advisory board shall provide a sufficient opportunity for public comment.

              SECTION 7. Each transit authority established under chapter 161B shall conduct a community-led service assessment. The assessment process shall be led by the advisory board and shall include participation by the transit rider and disabled population representatives and shall be undertaken in consultation with the regional planning agencies serving the municipalities that constitute the authority.  The department of transportation shall provide technical and staff assistance to the advisory boards as they conduct the service assessments.  Each service assessment shall include opportunities for meaningful public input through the use of an advisory committee, surveys, community meetings, and the opportunity to comment on a draft report. Each service assessment shall include a comprehensive market analysis, a performance analysis of existing service, the development and evaluation of alternative service scenarios, and the development of a recommendation to better align service with local and regional demand, the commonwealth’s environmental policies, and the region’s job creation goals. Each authority shall file a report on its findings together with recommendations for changes or additions to services provided with the secretary of the department of transportation and the joint committee on transportation by June 30, 2015.  The department shall publish the reports and recommendations on its website.

              SECTION 8.  The secretary of the department of transportation shall study the feasibility of establishing one or more facilities for the purposes of overhaul and other major repair, manufacture or assembly, installation, and upgrade of mass transit vehicles in order to ensure that safe, modern and efficient vehicles are in service in adequate numbers to meet the needs of citizens of the commonwealth.  The secretary shall file report on the findings with the governor, the joint committee on transportation and the house and senate committees on ways and means by June 30, 2014.  The study shall consider the possibility of utilizing existing funding sources to direct maintenance and repair projects to existing facilities within the commonwealth and shall estimate the funding needed to create appropriate facilities for manufacture, assembly or major overhaul projects.  The report shall include an estimate of the number of jobs related to creating the infrastructure necessary to perform this work in the commonwealth, the number of permanent jobs needed to create and maintain mass transit vehicles in the commonwealth, and the ancillary economic impact of operating such facilities in the commonwealth.

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