IRVINE, Calif. - April 11, 2019
Newly-elected 3rd District Supervisor Don Wagner was sworn in as the newest member of the Foothill/Eastern Transportation Corridor Agency (F/ETCA) and San Joaquin Hills Transportation Corridor Agency (SJHTCA) Boards of Directors.F/ETCA Chairwoman Christina Shea administered the oath of office to Supervisor Wagner – who was her immediate predecessor as Mayor of Irvine.
Wagner was sworn in as member of the Orange County Board of Supervisors from the 3rd District on March 27, following his victory in the March 12, 2019, special election.
“It’s an honor to welcome Supervisor Wagner to the Transportation Corridor Agencies,” said Shea. “We worked well together on Irvine City Council and I look forward to collaborating with him to enhance Orange County’s Toll Road network as a vital part of our county’s transportation infrastructure.”
Director Wagner served as Mayor of Irvine from 2016 until his election to the Board of Supervisors. From 2010 until 2016, he represented the 68th Assembly District in the California Legislature. Prior to that, he served four terms on the South Coast Community College District Board of Directors.
At their April 11 meeting, the SJHTCA and F/ETCA Boards of Directors voted to adopt an opposition position of Assembly Bill 1273 by Assembly Member Bill Brough. Each Board will issue a letter to the Assembly Local Government Committee members and Chair Cecilia Aguiar-Curry informing them of the SJHTCA and F/ETCA Boards’ vote to oppose AB 1273.
AB 1273 proposes to strip the Transportation Corridor Agencies (TCA) of its ability to continue improving traffic flow on the 73, 133, 241 and 261 Toll Roads. If enacted, the bill would strip local control over The Toll Roads and halt more than $3 billion in planned TCA projects. AB 1273 is scheduled for a hearing in the Assembly Local Government Committee on April 24.
TCA Chief Financial Officer Amy Potter updated the Boards of Directors on the status of the recently conducted accounts payable audit of communications contracts currently in place with TCA.
She also shared that per the recommendation of TCA’s Executive Committee, TCA has engaged Hall & Company as the Agencies’ external independent third-party auditor to review the strategic communications contracts that were the subject of an internal audit earlier this year and later the subject of a Los Angeles Times article. This proactive step reflects how seriously TCA takes any concerns or issues related to oversight responsibilities and the public trust.
Contracts Ad Hoc Committee Chair F/ETCA Director Peggy Huang reported that the Committee is in the process of reviewing Agency contracts and have already had two meetings. In its meeting on March 28, they reviewed the Strategic Planning and Legislative Affairs contracts. They are reviewing the purpose and scope of contracts and looking at whether contacts should be billed on a retainer basis or time and materials. They also discussed the internal audit reviews as well as actions moving forward, including the external independent third-party audit and an RFP for an outreach contract related to a formal environmental phase. The Committee will continue to work through the review of Agency contracts and oversee the progress of the external independent third-party audit by Hall & Company.
March 2019 was another rainy month on The Toll Roads. Compared to March 2018, F/ETCA transactions increased slightly and SJHTCA slightly decreased in March 2019. On the 133, 241 and 261 Toll Roads, transactions increased by 0.7 percent and revenue increased by 2.4 percent. Transactions decreased by 2.1 percent and revenue decreased by 0.4 percent for the 73 Toll Road. The F/ETCA experienced an all-time high number of transactions for a Monday on March 25.