Bill Text: CA SB1029 | 2017-2018 | Regular Session | Amended


Bill Title: North Coast Railroad Authority: right-of-way: Great Redwood Trail Agency: Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 1-0)

Status: (Engrossed) 2018-06-26 - From committee: Do pass and re-refer to Com. on APPR. (Ayes 10. Noes 0.) (June 25). Re-referred to Com. on APPR. [SB1029 Detail]

Download: California-2017-SB1029-Amended.html

Amended  IN  Assembly  June 20, 2018
Amended  IN  Senate  May 25, 2018
Amended  IN  Senate  April 30, 2018
Amended  IN  Senate  April 16, 2018
Amended  IN  Senate  April 05, 2018
Amended  IN  Senate  March 15, 2018

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill No. 1029


Introduced by Senator McGuire

February 08, 2018


An act to add Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 93030) to Title 12 of, and to add and repeal Section 14533.4 of, the Government Code, to add Chapter 14 (commencing with Section 5880) to Division 5 of the Public Resources Code, and to amend Sections 105001, 105003, 105012, 105020, and 105095 of, to add Sections 105032.5 and 105088 to, and to repeal Sections 105104, 105105, and 105180 of, the Public Utilities Code, relating to transportation.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 1029, as amended, McGuire. North Coast Railroad Authority: right-of-way: Great Redwood Trail Agency: Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District.
(1) Existing law creates the North Coast Railroad Authority with various powers and duties relating to rail service in the north coast area of the state, including the authority to acquire, own, operate, and lease real and personal property reasonably related to the operation and maintenance of railroads.
Existing law establishes in state government the California Transportation Commission with specified powers and duties relative to the programming of transportation capital improvement projects and other related matters.
This bill would require the commission to conduct an assessment of the authority’s preexisting liabilities related to debt, litigation, or contractual obligations and report that information to the Legislature before July 1, 2019.
This bill would require the authority, before April 1, 2019, to transfer its rights, privileges, and responsibilities, excluding any preexisting liability related to debt, litigation, or contractual obligations, relating to both its right-of-way south of a point in the City of Willits mile post 142.5, its licenses and certificates of public convenience and necessity, common carrier obligations held by the authority or an associated freight operator, and the railroad assets the authority owns to the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District, and would require the authority, before July 1, 2019, to transfer its rights, privileges, and responsibilities, excluding any preexisting liability related to debt, litigation, or contractual obligations, relating to its right-of-way north of that point in the City of Willits mile post 142.5 to the Great Redwood Trail Agency. The bill would abolish the authority after those transfers are made.
This bill would create the Great Redwood Trail Agency, and provide for the appointment of its board of directors. The bill would, to the extent funding is available, require the agency to to, among other things, inventory any parcel parcel, easement, or contract related to the northern portion of the right-of-way, complete an environmental assessment of the conditions of the northern portion of the right-of-way, create plan, construct, operate, and maintain a trail in, or next to, the northern portion of the right-of-way, and complete the a railbanking process on a portion of the northern right-of-way, and authorize the agency to contract with an operator to operate freight or excursion rail service on the remaining portion of the northern right-of-way, as specified. process, if and where appropriate. The bill would also provide that the agency has certain enumerated rights and powers, including to fix and collect fees, make grants, acquire interests in real property, and to enter into contracts and joint powers agreements.
This bill would create the Great Redwood Trail Program Fund, and would require certain moneys to be deposited into the fund and to be available for certain purposes.
(2) Existing law creates, within the Counties of Sonoma and Marin, the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District, which is governed by a 12-member board of directors, with specified duties and powers. Existing law requires the district to work with specified authorities to achieve a safe, efficient, and compatible system of passenger and freight rail service and authorizes the district to own, operate, manage, and maintain a passenger rail system within the territory of the district.
This bill would authorize the district to consider the need and financing for employee workforce housing, and would add a member to the district’s board of directors, to be appointed by the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors. The bill would require the district to conduct a freight rail study incorporating the southern portion of the right-of-way transferred to the district as described in paragraph (1). (1), and would require the district to create and maintain a trail that begins at mile post 142.5, runs in, or parallel to, the southern portion of the right-of-way, as appropriate, and connects to the district’s bicycle and pedestrian pathways to the extent feasible. The bill would also make various conforming changes to the district’s provisions relating to the abolishment of the North Coast Rail Authority. The bill would repeal the requirement that the district obtain coverage for itself and its employees under certain federal laws.
(3) Because this bill would impose new requirements on local entities, it would impose a state-mandated local program.
The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YES  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 This bill shall be known, and may be cited, as the Great Redwood Trail Act.

SEC. 2.

 It is the intent of the Legislature to do all of the following:
(a) Create a systemwide hiking, biking, and riding trail along or parallel to the North Coast Railroad Authority’s railroad tracks on the north coast. coast, which will be known as the Great Redwood Trail.
(b) Ascertain all liabilities, debts, contractual obligations, and leasehold interests held by the Northwestern Pacific Railroad Company, and other legal obligations of the North Coast Railroad Authority, transfer the authority’s assets and the right-of-way as provided for in this act, and abolish the North Coast Railroad Authority, which was established by statute in 1989.
(c) (1) Transfer the North Coast Railroad Authority’s real property, rail assets, rail easements, licenses and certificates of public convenience and necessity, common carrier obligations, and right-of-way south of mile post 142.5 in Willits, California, to the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District.
(2) To the extent funding is available from nonlocal sources, the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District will be responsible for creating and maintaining a trail that begins at mile post 142.5, runs in, or parallel to, the southern portion of the right-of-way, as appropriate, and connects to the district’s bicycle and pedestrian pathways to the extent feasible.
(d) (1) Create the Great Redwood Trail Agency, which will be responsible for constructing and maintaining a hiking, biking, and riding trail in in, or parallel to, the northern portion of the right-of-way, from mile post 142.5 to mile post 300.5.

(e)

(2) Transfer the northern portion of the North Coast Railroad Authority’s right-of-way, from mile post 142.5 to mile post 300.5, to the Great Redwood Trail Agency.
(3) Authorize the Great Redwood Trail Agency to work with landowners and fishing organizations to locate and provide appropriate fishing access sites along the northern portion of the right-of-way.

(f)

(e) Ensure each portion of the right-of-way not used for rail is railbanked or otherwise used as a trail.

(g)

(f) Ensure each portion of the right-of-way used for rail also has a trail created and maintained in, or next parallel to, it.

(h)(1)Provide

(g) As the right-of-way runs through working ranch lands and farms, much of it very remote, the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District and the Great Redwood Trail Agency should take special concern to work with landowners and businesses to mitigate concerns raised by the changes to the right-of-way.
(h) For the portion of the right-of-way from mile post 85 at the Cloverdale Depot to mile post 300.5:
(1) Provide for the creation of the trail the Great Redwood Trail as a multiuse trail wherever practical, provide a safe, continuous contiguous alignment with appropriate and flexible design standards for site conditions, and support the intended uses of the trail. To the extent possible, trail alignments should promote connectivity between communities adjacent, or in close proximity, to established right-of-ways rights-of-way in order to link populations and population centers and to provide enhanced recreation and commuter opportunities. As such, it is the intent of the Legislature to authorize the applicable successor agencies entities to identify nodes that promote connectivity along the route.
(2) Provide for the specific trail use types, including hiking, biking, and equestrian uses, to be determined by site specific studies and a broad community engagement process.

SEC. 3.

 Section 14533.4 is added to the Government Code, to read:

14533.4.
 (a) The commission shall conduct an assessment of the North Coast Railroad Authority’s preexisting liabilities related to debt, litigation, or contractual obligations and report that information to the Legislature before July 1, 2019.
(b) The commission may request the Department of Finance, or contract with another entity, to perform the work the commission deems necessary to carry out the duties described in subdivision (a).

(b)

(c) (1) The report to be submitted pursuant to subdivision (a) shall be submitted in compliance with Section 9795.
(2) Pursuant to Section 10231.5, this section is repealed on January 1, 2023.

SEC. 4.

 Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 93030) is added to Title 12 of the Government Code, to read:
CHAPTER  4. Abolishment

93030.
 Before April 1, 2019, the authority shall transfer its rights, privileges, and responsibilities, excluding any preexisting liability related to debt, litigation, or contractual obligations, relating to both its right-of-way south of mile post 142.5 in the City of Willits, 142.5, including any associated real property, rail easements, and branch or spur lines, its licenses and certificates of public convenience and necessity, common carrier obligations, obligations held by the authority or an associated freight operator, and the railroad assets the authority owns to the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District created pursuant to Section 105010 of the Public Utilities Code.

93030.5.
 In making the transfer pursuant to Section 93030, it is the intent of the legislature to make the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District the exclusive holder of the right to restart or operate freight service along that portion of the right-of-way and that no third party shall acquire that right.

93031.
 (a) Before July 1, 2019, the authority shall transfer its rights, privileges, and responsibilities, excluding any preexisting liability related to debt, litigation, or contractual obligations, relating to its right-of-way north of mile post 142.5 in the City of Willits, 142.5, including any associated branch or spur lines, to the Great Redwood Trail Agency created pursuant to Section 5880 of the Public Resources Code.
(b) The transfer made pursuant to subdivision (a) shall not affect or negate any rights under Memorandum of Agreement 1991-2324, which was filed on January 31, 1991, with the county clerk-recorder’s office for the County of Humboldt.

93032.
 In making the transfers pursuant to Sections 93030 and 93031, the authority shall transfer all of its rights, privileges, and responsibilities, excluding any preexisting liability related to debt, litigation, or contractual obligations, relating to any right-of-way.

93032.5.

The transfers made pursuant to this chapter shall not effect or negate rights under the Memorandum of Agreement 1991-2324, which was filed on January 31, 1991, with the county clerk-recorder’s office for the County of Humboldt.

93033.
 Upon making all of the transfers described in this chapter, the authority shall be abolished.

SEC. 5.

 Chapter 14 (commencing with Section 5880) is added to Division 5 of the Public Resources Code, to read:
CHAPTER  14. Great Redwood Trail Agency

5880.
 (a) The Great Redwood Trail Agency is hereby created.
(b) The goal of this chapter is for the agency to use the existing right-of-way, or paths parallel to the right-of-way, to plan, design, construct, operate, and maintain the northern portion of the Great Redwood Trail in, or parallel to, the right-of-way.

5881.
 For purposes of this chapter, the following definitions shall apply:
(a) “Agency” means the Great Redwood Trail Agency.
(b) “Board” means the agency’s board of directors described in Section 5882.
(c) “Northern portion of the Great Redwood Trail” means the trail planned, designed, constructed, operated, and maintained in, or parallel to, the right-of-way pursuant to paragraph (4) of subdivision (a) of Section 5883.

(c)

(d) “Right-of-way” means the entire length of the right-of-way transferred to the agency pursuant to Section 93031 of the Government Code.

5882.
 (a) The agency shall be governed by a board of directors, composed as follows:

(a)

(1) The Governor shall appoint two board members, one representing the Department of Transportation and one representing the Natural Resources Agency, who are knowledgeable about trails, parks, railroads, or rivers.

(b)

(2) The Senate Committee on Rules shall appoint one board member who is knowledgeable about trails, parks, railroads, or rivers.

(c)

(3) The Speaker of the Assembly shall appoint one board member who is knowledgeable about trails, parks, railroads, or rivers.

(d)

(4) The Board of Supervisors of the County of Mendocino may appoint one of its members to serve as a board member.

(e)

(5) The Board of Supervisors of the County of Humboldt may appoint one of its members to serve as a board member.

(f) ____ may appoint one board member.

(6) The Redwood Empire Division of the League of California Cities, or its successor, may appoint one member who is a mayor, or city council member, of a city or town on the right-of-way in the County of Mendocino or Humboldt.
(b) (1) Each member of the board shall serve a term of four years, except that the term of a member appointed pursuant to paragraph (4), (5), or (6) of subdivision (a) shall cease if the member no longer serves as a member of the specified board of supervisors or specified city council, or as the mayor of the specified city.
(2) Notwithstanding paragraph (1), each member shall serve on the board until his or her successor has been appointed.

5883.
 Upon receiving the North Coast Railroad Authority’s rights, privileges, and responsibilities, excluding any preexisting liability related to debt, litigation, or contractual obligations, relating to the authority’s right-of-way north of mile post 142.5 in the City of Willits, 142.5, including any associated branch or spur lines, pursuant to Section 93031, the agency shall do both of the following as soon as possible, to the extent funding is available: both of the following subdivisions shall become effective:
(a) To the extent funding is available, the agency shall do all of the following:

(a)

(1) Inventory any parcel parcel, easement, or contract related to the right-of-way.

(b)

(2) Complete an environmental assessment of the right-of-way. conditions of the right-of-way for purposes of trail development.
(3) If and where appropriate to further the goal of this chapter, initiate and complete the federal Surface Transportation Board’s railbanking process.
(4) Plan, design, construct, operate, and maintain a trail in, or parallel to, the right-of-way.
(5) Conduct a thorough community engagement process that includes landowners, trail advocates, environmental groups, and the community at large. Items to be discussed during this process include, but are not limited to, trail configurations parallel to the right-of-way, including those on public lands, connecting the northern portion of the Great Redwood Trail to existing trails, and rail-crossing fees.
(6) Honor existing trail licenses and work with local and state governments and community groups to expeditiously provide new trail license agreements that meet the goal of this chapter.
(7) Utilize the services of the California Conservation Corps, wherever feasible, for projects related to trails, environmental enhancements and restoration, and other improvement projects.
(8) Utilize the services of conservation organizations, wherever feasible, for projects related to fishing access, fish passage barrier restoration, and other environmental enhancement, restoration, and improvement projects.
(9) Prepare a master plan for the northern portion of the Great Redwood Trail, including any environmental analysis required pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act (Division 13 (commencing with Section 21000)).
(10) Before January 1, 2020, and annually thereafter, submit a report to the Legislature, in compliance with Section 9795 of the Government Code, describing the agency’s progress towards fulfilling the requirements and goal relating to the right-of-way.
(11) Restrict public access to each segment of the right-of-way until the construction of the trail segment is completed, as determined by the agency.
(b) To the extent funding is available, the agency may do any of the following:
(1) Contract with a trail manager or organization to meet the requirements of this section.
(2) Contract with an operator to operate freight or excursion rail service except that the service shall not interfere with or harm the northern portion of the Great Redwood Trail.
(3) Work with landowners and fishing organizations to locate and provide appropriate fishing access sites along the right-of-way. In doing so, the agency shall seek to discourage and prevent trespassing on private property.

5885.

The agency shall do all of the following, to the extent funding is available:

(a)For the portion of the right-of-way between mile post 142.5 and mile post 284, including any associated branch or spur lines, the agency shall complete the railbanking process on, and create and maintain a trail in, or next to, that portion of the right-of-way. The agency may contract with a trail manager or organization to meet the requirements of this subdivision.

(b)For the portion of the right-of-way between mile post 284 and mile post 300.5, including any associated branch or spur lines, the agency shall create and maintain a trail in, or next to, that portion of the right-of-way, and may contract with a trail manager or organization to meet these requirements. The agency may contract with an operator to operate freight or excursion rail service on this portion of the right-of-way, except that the service shall not interfere with or harm the agency’s trail.

(c)Before January 1, 2020, and annually thereafter, submit a report to the Legislature, in compliance with Section 9795 of the Government Code, describing its progress towards fulfilling the requirements and goals relating to the right-of-way.

(d)Utilize the services of the California Conservation Corps wherever possible on projects related to trails, environmental enhancements and restoration, and other improvement projects.

5884.
 Upon the completion of the planning, design, and construction of the northern portion of the Great Redwood Trail, the agency may transfer the responsibility of performing the acts described in this chapter to a more appropriate permanent operating entity for the operation and maintenance of the northern portion of the Great Redwood Trail.

5885.
 (a) The Great Redwood Trail Program Fund is hereby created. Moneys in the fund shall accrue interest and be available for the purposes of this chapter.
(b) All revenue, including fee revenue, received pursuant to this chapter shall be deposited in the fund.

5886.
 The agency shall have and may exercise all rights and powers, expressed or implied, necessary to carry out the purposes and intent of this chapter, including, but not limited to, to enter all of the following:
(a) To enter into and perform all necessary contracts pursuant to Article 53.5 (commencing with Section 20815) of Chapter 1 of Part 3 of Division 2 of the Public Contract Code.
(b) To fix and collect fees for the use of any land owned or controlled, or for any service provided, by the agency.
(c) To make grants.
(d) To acquire interests in real property.
(e) To lease, rent, sell, exchange, or transfer interests in real property.
(f) To undertake or fund projects and programs implementing this chapter or relating to the northern portion of the Great Redwood Trail.
(g) To provide for the management of the right-of-way and the northern portion of the Great Redwood Trail.
(h) To apply for and accept grants, gifts, donations of money and property, subventions, rents, royalties, or other assistance from public or private sources.
(i) To recruit and coordinate volunteers and experts to conduct interpretive and recreational programs and to assist with construction projects and the maintenance of facilities.
(j) To enter into contracts and joint powers agreements.
(k) To sue and be sued.

5887.
 The agency shall be subject to the Ralph M. Brown Act (Chapter 9 (commencing with Section 54950) of Part 1 of Division 2 of Title 5 of the Government Code) and the California Public Records Act (Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 6250) of Division 7 of Title 1 of the Government Code).

SEC. 6.

 Section 105001 of the Public Utilities Code is amended to read:

105001.
 It is the intent of the Legislature in enacting this part to provide for a unified, comprehensive institutional structure for the ownership and governance of a passenger rail system within the Counties of Sonoma and Marin and a freight service that operates upon the same rail line and serves the Counties of Humboldt, Marin, Mendocino, Napa, and Sonoma.

SEC. 7.

 Section 105003 of the Public Utilities Code is amended to read:

105003.
 As used in this part, the following terms have the following meanings:
(a) “District” means the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District.
(b) “Rail transit” means the transportation of passengers and their incidental baggage by rail and provision of freight service by rail.
(c) “Rail transit works” or “rail transit facilities” means any or all real and personal property, equipment, rights, or interests owned or to be acquired by the district for rail transit service purposes, including ancillary bicycle and pedestrian pathways that provide connections between and access to station sites.
(d) “Board of directors,” “board,” or “directors” means the board of directors of the district.
(e) “Public agency” includes the state, and any county, city and county, city, district, or other political subdivision or public entity of, or organized under the laws of, this state, or any department, instrumentality, or agency thereof.

SEC. 8.

 Section 105012 of the Public Utilities Code is amended to read:

105012.
 (a) Upon the dissolution of the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit Commission and the Northwestern Pacific Railroad Authority, the district shall succeed to any or all of the powers, duties, rights, obligations, liabilities, indebtedness, bonded and otherwise, immunities, and exemptions of the commission and its board of commissioners and the authority and its board of directors.
(b) Upon the dissolution of the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit Commission and the Northwestern Pacific Railroad Authority, the district shall assume the rights and obligations of the commission and the authority under any contract to which the commission or the authority is a party and that is to be performed, in whole or in part, on or after the date of dissolution of the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit Commission and the Northwestern Pacific Railroad Authority.
(c) All real and personal property owned by the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit Commission and the Northwestern Pacific Railroad Authority may be transferred to the district.
(d) Upon the dissolution of the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit Commission, the district shall assume, without any condition whatsoever, all responsibilities and obligations previously assumed by the commission with respect to its fund transfer agreement with the Department of Transportation for the funding of the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit Project.
(e) On and after the date of dissolution of the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit Commission and the Northwestern Pacific Railroad Authority, any reference in any provision of law or regulation to the commission or the authority shall be deemed to refer to the district.

SEC. 9.

 Section 105020 of the Public Utilities Code is amended to read:

105020.
 The government of the district shall be vested in a board of directors, which shall consist of 12 or 13 members, appointed as follows:
(a) Two members of the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors, each of whom shall also serve on the Board of Directors of the Sonoma County Transportation Authority, appointed by the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors.
(b) Two members of the Marin County Board of Supervisors, appointed by the Marin County Board of Supervisors.
(c) Three members, each of whom shall be a mayor or council member of a city or town within the County of Sonoma, appointed by the Sonoma County Mayors and Council Members Association or its successor, provided the following conditions are met:
(1) At least two members are also city representatives for the Sonoma County Transportation Authority.
(2) All of the members are from cities on the rail line in Sonoma County.
(3) No city has more than one member.
(d) The member of the City Council of the City of Novato who also serves on the Marin County Congestion Management Agency, appointed by the Marin County Congestion Management Agency or its successor.
(e) The member of the City Council of the City of San Rafael who also serves on the Marin County Congestion Management Agency, appointed by the Marin County Congestion Management Agency or its successor.
(f) One member, who shall be a mayor or council member of a city or town within the County of Marin and a member of the Marin County Congestion Management Agency, appointed by the Marin County Council of Mayors and Council Members or its successor.
(g) Two members of the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District, neither of whom shall be a member of the Marin or Sonoma County Boards of Supervisors, appointed by the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District or its successor.
(h) One member, who shall be a member of the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors, appointed by the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors, if it chooses to do so.

SEC. 10.

 Section 105032.5 is added to the Public Utilities Code, to read:

105032.5.
 The board may consider the need and financing for employee workforce housing.

SEC. 11.

 Section 105088 is added to the Public Utilities Code, to read:

105088.
 Upon receiving the North Coast Railroad Authority’s rights, privileges, and responsibilities relating to the authority’s right-of-way south of mile post 142.5 in the City of Willits pursuant to Section 93030 of the Government Code, and upon receiving funding, funding from nonlocal sources, the district shall do all of the following:
(a) Conduct a freight rail study incorporating the portion of the right-of-way between mile post 0.0 and mile post 142.5.
(b) Create and maintain a trail that begins at mile post 142.5, runs in, or parallel to, the southern portion of the right-of-way, as appropriate, and connects to the district’s bicycle and pedestrian pathways to the extent feasible. This trail shall be the southern portion of the Great Redwood Trail.
(c) Conduct a thorough community engagement process that includes landowners, trail advocates, environmental groups, and the community at large. Items to be discussed during this process include, but are not limited to, trail configurations parallel to the southern portion of the right-of-way, including those on public lands, connecting the southern portion of the right-of-way to existing trails, and rail-crossing fees.

(b)

(d) Create or assign the positions of trail manager and freight rail manager.

(c)

(e) Before January 1, 2020, and annually thereafter, submit a report to the Legislature, in compliance with Section 9795 of the Government Code, describing its progress towards fulfilling the requirements and goals relating to the southern portion of the right-of-way.

SEC. 12.

 Section 105095 of the Public Utilities Code is amended to read:

105095.
 The district may provide a rail transit system for the transportation of passengers and their incidental baggage by rail and provision of freight service by rail.

SEC. 13.

 Section 105104 of the Public Utilities Code is repealed.

SEC. 14.

 Section 105105 of the Public Utilities Code is repealed.

SEC. 15.

 Section 105180 of the Public Utilities Code is repealed.

SEC. 16.

  If the Commission on State Mandates determines that this act contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to local agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made pursuant to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of Title 2 of the Government Code.