Report to the Commission: February 24, 2021
Key Updates on COVID-Related Activities
A reminder that all Covid-19 related reporting items can be found on our MTC webpage. We provide monthly updates on all related activities, and statistics that are affecting the region. The website address is below:
Last month, the Commission made the first allocations of the Coronovirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSA funding) as part of a reconciliation with allocations made from the prior CARES Act. The balance of the CRRSA funding is targeted for Commission allocation in March.
In addition, the Blue Ribbon Transit Recovery Task Force receives periodic reports on Covid-19 related issues. The February 22, 2021 meeting agenda item 5a Outreach and Engagement Update includes recent insightful focus group information that should be of interest. Agenda packet
Technical Assistance for Housing and Local Planning
MTC and ABAG recently closed a joint call for Letters of Interest for local grants that integrated the Regional Housing Technical Assistance and PDA Programs. All 109 jurisdictions were eligible for formula-based funding to support Housing Elements, with additional competitive funding for housing plans and jurisdictions with designated PDAs. Staff developed a streamlined, web-based application and conducted extensive outreach during the application period. To date, 98% of jurisdictions have submitted applications. The funding requested significantly exceeds the amount available in each competitive program, including $30M in requests for roughly $6M in PDA funds. Award recommendations for competitive housing and PDA grants are slated for Committee approval in May or June. To support jurisdictions with procurements, MTC and ABAG recently closed a joint RFQ for a Regional Planning Consulting Bench and received submissions from over 90 firms. Recommendations for the bench will be brought to policymakers in April or May. Finally, as part of the Regional Housing Technical Assistance Program, ABAG is launching a 10-part webinar training series for local staff focused on Housing Elements. The webinar series will include an overview of Housing Element basics, recent updates to Housing Element law, site selection and rezoning requirements, community outreach, and affirmatively furthering fair housing.
Transit Fare Coordination Survey
As part of MTC’s Fare Coordination and Integration Study, a public survey was launched in late January to investigate ways to make the region's transit network better coordinated, focusing on improving fare policy and the fare payment experience. Transportation officials are interested in opinions from transit users and are inviting them to share stories about their experiences via the survey at mtc.one/farestudy. The study is scheduled to conclude in summer 2021.