4-Party Transit Accord on Ann Arbor Horizon

As part of the written report from Ann Arbor Transportation Authority CEO Michael Ford to the AATA board for their Nov. 17, 2011 meeting, Ford describes a four-party agreement that is anticipated to be reached by the AATA, Washtenaw County, the city of Ypsilanti and the city of Ann Arbor. The agreement would be a step towards establishing a countywide transit authority under Michigan’s Act 196 of 1986, because it would provide part of the mechanism for a transition from the AATA’s governance (under Act 55 of 1963) to a new transit authority based on Act 196.

The agreement would establish an arrangement for Washtenaw County to incorporate a new transit authority under Act 196 and for the two cities (Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti) to pledge their transit tax funds levied currently for use by the AATA to the new Act 196 organization, once its governance and basis for its funding is clear.

The governing bodies of the four entities would need to sign off on the arrangement. Ford’s written report indicates that the four-party agreement is expected to go before the Ann Arbor city council for discussion at a working session on Dec. 12, with a vote possible as soon as Dec. 19.

The AATA’s planning effort to expand its services across Washtenaw County comes in the context of a proposal from Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder that would provide vehicle registration fees as a possible funding option for a regional transit authority for the southeastern part of the state, which would include Washtenaw County. [Chronicle coverage: "Washtenaw Transit Talk in Flux"]

This brief was filed from the boardroom of the Ann Arbor District Library, where the AATA board holds its meetings. A detailed reported of the meeting will follow: [link]