Caltrain Governance Compromise Accepted by All Partner Agencies

Media Contact: Dan Lieberman, 650.622.2492

The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) voted unanimously to accept Caltrain’s Governance Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) last night, the last of Caltrain’s member agencies to accept the proposal. The MOU establishes a permanent, separate Executive Director position for the agency, as well as five Caltrain-specific direct reports, while the San Mateo County Transit District (District) will be repaid for its initial investment in Caltrain.

“With all of our partners in agreement, we are again a united Caltrain,” said Caltrain Board Chair Steve Heminger. “We will now turn our full attention to delivering quality rail service to the people of the Bay Area, and electrifying the corridor to provide the modern, green Caltrain that the Bay Area deserves.”

Under this new agreement, the new Executive Director will report directly to the Caltrain Board of Directors, rather than the District’s General Manager/CEO. Five new positions have been created that will report directly to the Executive Director. The District will be repaid ($19.8M) for its initial investment in Caltrain, along with additional resources ($15.2M) for the delay in payment of the $19.8M and the District’s agreement to assign some of its rights as managing agency to Caltrain.  The District will relinquish certain real property interests related to Caltrain and will continue to provide it with shared services.  

The MOU has already been unanimously accepted by the Caltrain Board of Directors, the SamTrans Board of Directors, the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) and the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.


About Caltrain: Owned and operated by the Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board, Caltrain provides rail service from San Francisco to San Jose, with commute service to Gilroy. Serving the region since 1863, Caltrain is the oldest continually operating rail system west of the Mississippi. Looking to the future, Caltrain is set to electrify the corridor by 2024, which will reduce diesel emissions and add more service to more stations while advancing the agency’s equity goals.

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