Caltrain Electrification & Modernization: 21 Years of Leadership

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April 24  |  Uncategorized  |   Carl Guardino

For 21 years, when it comes to the electrification & modernization of Caltrain, the 400 members of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group have placed their wallets where their words are.

• In 1996, the Silicon Valley Leadership Group led “Measures A & B” on the November ballot. The nine-year, half-cent sales tax included $44 million in local funds to benefit Caltrain modernization improvements necessary for future electrification.

• In 2000, the Silicon Valley Leadership Group led “Measure A” on the November ballot, which passed with 70.4 percent of the vote. The 30-year, half cent sales tax (which didn’t begin until 2006 and runs through 2036), includes $$131.5 million in local funds to benefit modernization improvements needed for future electrification.

• In 2016, the Silicon Valley Leadership Group led “Measure B” on the November 8 ballot, which passed with 71.74 percent of the vote. The 30-year, half cent sales tax (which started revenue collection on April 1), includes more than $1 billion ($1,014,000,000) for modernization, safety and service improvements needed for the future electrification of Caltrain.

• In 2012, as one of only nine Gubernatorial Appointees to the California Transportation Commission, Leadership Group CEO Carl Guardino led the effort to secure $106 million in state funds for the electrification of Caltrain.

• Why is an employer organization consisting of nearly 400 Silicon Valley Innovation Economy CEOs continuing to lead efforts to tax themselves to modernize and electrify Caltrain? Because it is vital to our employees, their families and others who call our Bay Area home.

• The Caltrain Corridor between San Jose and San Francisco is home to 1.6 million jobs.

• The Caltrain Corridor is an economic juggernaut, important to ALL of California,
– It produces 20 percent of the sales tax revenue generated in the entire state;
– It produces 13 percent of our State’s Gross Domestic Product;
– It produces 53 percent of all the patents filed from California.

• Caltrain electrification & modernization nearly doubles Caltrain ridership from almost 65,000 weekday passenger trips to more than 110,000 weekday passenger trips.
• Three of every five Caltrain passengers is a “Choice Rider,” which means they are choosing to get out of their own cars and onto Caltrain railcars, easing traffic on Highways 101 and 280, and our local streets and roads.

We have come far in our efforts to modernize and electrify Caltrain.  Let’s keep it on-track for completion by 2020.

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