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'Caltrain passengers in great peril': San Mateo County supervisors criticize tax plan from SF supervisors

Original post made on Jul 30, 2020

A sales tax proposed on Tuesday by San Francisco's Board of Supervisors to support Caltrain, which would be assessed in all three counties the commuter rail serves, drew immediate criticism from San Mateo County supervisors.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, July 30, 2020, 1:44 PM

Comments (7)

10 people like this
Posted by resident
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Jul 30, 2020 at 2:33 pm

Management of Caltrain is not a new issue. Why is San Mateo County so hard headed about keeping exclusive control of Caltrain? San Francisco has been asking for shared leadership for years.

9 people like this
Posted by Another Resident
a resident of Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on Jul 30, 2020 at 4:11 pm


The reason San Mateo County is hard headed about keeping exclusive control over Caltrain is that the county paid for it. About 30 years ago, it put up the money to buy the rail right of way. The other two counties were supposed to pay San Mateo back one day, but never did. Eventually, all parties agreed San Mateo County would run Caltrain to reflect its greater financial investment not matched by SF and Santa Clara.

Now, the other two counties want equal control. If they really want that, they need to pay their fair share with interest. Instead, they are using political maneuvering to get equal control.

25 people like this
Posted by Enough
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Jul 30, 2020 at 7:35 pm

If no one is riding CalTrain and they can not afford to stay afloat without a new sales tax in these three counties why are they pouring money into electrifying the rail line to accomodate more trains. It seems that the money they are spending erecting all the wire lines and purchasing new electric locomotives would be better spend keeping the current trains running until they can get ridership back and stop losing money. It is a sure thing that once they get ahold of a sales tax they will never let it end, we will be paying for this for the next 100 years.

23 people like this
Posted by Gravy Train
a resident of another community
on Jul 30, 2020 at 8:47 pm

Follow the money. Where does it go? To employees and contractors. That is the purpose of Caltrain. More money for employees and contractors. Running trains is a hobby.

12 people like this
Posted by Thomas Paine
a resident of Menlo Park: Stanford Hills
on Jul 31, 2020 at 8:42 am

We need to save the train! The 3 people who ride it every day will be devastated if it ends service.

11 people like this
Posted by STAY AT HOME?
a resident of Menlo Park: Park Forest
on Jul 31, 2020 at 1:45 pm

So, here's the situation (as I see it). The people who need to commute the most are at the bottom of the income ladder. They are the ones who can't afford Caltrain. They take buses or ride bikes. AND, they can't and don't work at home. (BTW: They are also the most populous victims of this Pandemic, and they can't afford to stay home.) So, Caltrain is, today, an under-utilized, over-priced, white-collar transit mode. Our tax dollars subsidize their commute. In other words, it's not actually public mass transit. Will Caltrain ridership ever return to its prior 60K per day? Maybe yes; maybe no. At this moment, who manages (or mismanages) it is really not the central issue or problem. And a tax to sustain Caltrain does not resolve these more fundamental problems. So, what's this all about? "Gravy Train" above, said it: "Follow the money."

2 people like this
Posted by morris brown
a resident of Menlo Park: Park Forest
on Jul 31, 2020 at 5:49 pm

This morning in a completely un-expected action, the San Francisco County Transportation Agency FAILED to approve the proposed Sales Tax Ballot measure which was approved by the SF Supervisors.

This action essentially means that the proposed Sales Tax Ballot measure for the November 2020 ballot will not appear.

To get on the ballot, 7 agencies or boards, needed to approve the exact same ballot language, which the SF Supers had approved and which included approval of Governance changes at Caltrain.

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