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Next Review Date: None
Last Review Cycle: 2010-2011 Review Cycle - 82nd Legislative Session
Final Results of Last Sunset Review
Created in 1985, the Capital Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Capital Metro) provides public transportation services for the Austin area and some outlying communities. These services include bus services, paratransit services for persons with disabilities, and commuter rail from Austin to Leander. Capital Metro does not receive state appropriations, and funds its operations primarily through sales tax revenues and federal transportation funds. An eight-member Board, three of whom are locally elected officials, oversees Capital Metro. Capital Metro is subject to review, but not abolishment, under the Sunset Act.
Senate Bill 650 makes needed changes in law to ensure that Capital Metro follows through in more responsibly managing its finances and reserves, lowering its excessive labor costs, and prioritizing needed maintenance of its outdated railroad bridges. The Legislature adopted the majority of the Sunset Commission’s recommendations, removing only a few provisions already implemented by Capital Metro. The Legislature also added a new provision to address how to maintain services for certain people with disabilities in areas that withdrew from Capital Metro’s service area. A list of the bill’s major provisions follows.
- Require the Board to revamp Capital Metro’s reserves and budgeting practices to ensure its finances are responsibly managed.
- Require Capital Metro to competitively bid all transit services not directly provided by its own employees.
- Enhance the ongoing safety of Capital Metro’s commuter rail system.
- Require Capital Metro to develop a policy to more effectively engage stakeholders and to help rebuild the public’s trust.
- Require Capital Metro to provide services to certain persons with disabilities living in communities that withdrew from its service area.