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King County Metro Transit Service Guidelines Task Force Work Plan

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Attachment A February 23, 2015
 
King County Metro Transit Service Guidelines Task Force Work Plan
A regional stakeholder transit Task Force charged with reviewing and making  recommendations regarding service types, geographic value and social equity, as  well as financial policies for purchase of additional services and alternatives  services implementation.  
    February 23, 2015 Prepared for:  King County Council Prepared by: 
Department of Transportation Metro Transit Division Service Development Section King Street Center, KSC-TR-0415 201 S Jackson St. Seattle, WA 98104 www.kingcounty.gov/metro Alternative Formats Available 206-477-3832 TTY Relay: 711

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Attachment A February 23, 2015
Table of Contents

Introduction ............................................................................................................................................................... 1 Scope of Work ........................................................................................................................................................... 2 Background ............................................................................................................................................................ 2 Objectives of the Service Guidelines Task Force ................................................................................................... 2 Roles and Responsibilities ......................................................................................................................................... 7 Responsibilities of the Facilitator/Mediator ......................................................................................................... 7 Responsibilities of Metro Staff .............................................................................................................................. 7 Responsibilities of Task Force Members ............................................................................................................... 8 Responsibilities of Project Coordination Team ..................................................................................................... 8 Responsibilities of Interbranch Working Group .................................................................................................... 8 Tasks, Deliverables, Milestones and Budget ........................................................................................................... 10 Tasks, Deliverables, and Milestones .................................................................................................................... 10 Budget ................................................................................................................................................................. 12 Schedule and Timeline ............................................................................................................................................ 13 Proposed Schedule .............................................................................................................................................. 13 Materials Distribution .......................................................................................................................................... 14 Integration with Long Range Plan and Other Planning Efforts................................................................................ 15 Metro��s Long Range Plan ..................................................................................................................................... 15 Task Force Membership Criteria ............................................................................................................................. 16

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Attachment A February 23, 2015 1
Introduction
Ordinance 17941, which adopted the 2015/2016 King County Biennial Budget included proviso (P1), stating: Of this appropriation $1,000,000 may not be encumbered until the executive transmits a motion  establishing a regional stakeholder transit Task Force and adopting a detailed Task Force work plan and  the motion is passed by the council. The motion shall reference the subject matter, the proviso's  ordinance, ordinance section and proviso number in both the title and body of the motion.   A. The work plan shall provide for convening a Task Force by March 31, 2015 that is charged  with reviewing and making recommendations regarding:     1. How transit service performance is measured as specified in the Metro Service  Guidelines to reflect the varied purposes of different types of transit service;   2. Approaches to evaluating how the goal of geographic value is included in the Metro  Service Guidelines, including minimum service standards;   3. Approaches to evaluating how the goal of social equity is included in the Metro  Service Guidelines;   4. Outline financial policies for purchase of additional services within a municipality or  among multiple municipalities;   5. Outline guidelines for alternative services implementation; and     B. The work plan shall reflect integration with long range transit system planning and reflect  corridor analyses including of Sound Transit corridors as well as Metro Transit System  corridors.   C. The work plan shall include a scope of work, tasks, schedule, milestones, budget, Task Force  membership criteria and the creation of an interbranch working group to support the Task  Force process.     The executive must file the work plan and motion approving it by January 14, 2015, in the form of a  paper original and an electronic copy with the clerk of the council, who shall retain the original and  provide an electronic copy to all councilmembers, the council chief of staff, the policy staff director and  the lead staff for the regional transit committee and the transportation, economy and environment  committee, or its successor.    This work plan addresses the requirements of Proviso 1 from Section 113 of Ordinance 17941.

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Attachment A February 23, 2015 2
Scope of Work
This section outlines the scope of work, including project background and the objectives of the Task Force.
Background
In 2009, in response to Metro��s ongoing financial challenges and the increasing regional interest in improving efficiency of the system, the first Regional Transit Task Force (RTTF) was convened. The work of the award- winning Task Force was the foundation for the adopted Strategic Plan for Public Transportation, 2011-2021 and King County Metro Service Guidelines that are in place today. The RTTF called for transparent, performance-based guidelines emphasizing productivity, social equity, and geographic value. To this end, the Service Guidelines list 64 transit activity centers, 17 regional growth centers, and four manufacturing/industrial centers, that are distributed throughout King County and are connected by transit corridors. Target service levels on these transit corridors are identified through a scoring system, with points assigned as follows: • 50 percent of points are based on household, job, and college student proximity to the corridor; • 25 percent of points are based on the share of boardings in census tracts with higher than average low- income and minority populations; and • 25 percent of the points are awarded for corridors that are the primary connections between centers. Analysis of total points scored establishes an initial service level in one of six service families a corridor belongs in: very frequent, frequent, local, hourly, peak, or alternative service. The results of this analysis inform investment and reduction priorities for specific routes, which also take into account the actual performance of each route. In the three years since these planning documents were adopted, Metro has completed four Service Guidelines Reports and adjusted service ten times. The County also updated the Service Guidelines in 2013. Building on the lessons of the past three years, further refinements to the Guidelines could help to ensure that future transit investments reflect the intent of the RTTF��s policy guidance. The Service Guidelines Task Force that will be convened starting early in 2015 will use the solid foundation developed in the 2009 effort to further analyze how transit service is allocated and measured across the region. The success of the RTTF was, in part, due to the tremendous collaboration by King County, partner cities, regional decision makers, and diverse stakeholders. This same approach will help to develop recommendations that improve the regional transit system. The Service Guidelines are a living document that will evolve over time, and after three years of their use, now is an opportune time to evaluate them in advance of the next update to the Strategic Plan and Service Guidelines, scheduled for 2015.
Objectives of the Service Guidelines Task Force
The Task Force will consider the varied purposes and performance characteristics of different types of transit service, which could include definitions of types of service beyond the market based service types (Seattle core versus non-Seattle core) that are currently in the guidelines. Given the policy basis for setting target service levels of 50 percent productivity, 25 percent social equity and 25 percent geographic value, the Task Force will review how the geographic value and social equity standards have been incorporated into the adopted guidelines. The Task Force will build upon existing work completed for the Community Mobility Contracts (CMC)

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Attachment A February 23, 2015 3 program to outline financial policies for the purchase of additional services within a municipality or among multiple municipalities. The Task Force will also build upon work completed for the Alternative Services Program to outline guidelines for alternative services implementation. The discussion of alternative services will be incorporated into the discussion on service types, social equity, and geographic value. Given the robust nature of the above discussion topics, Metro would like to provide clarity about the Task Force process. Metro recommends that the discussion focus on the following aspects (see the Proposed Schedule on page 11 for the order that these topics would be presented to the Task Force): 1. Transit service types: The proviso asks Metro to review and make recommendations on ��how transit service performance is measured as specified in the Metro Service Guidelines to reflect the varied purposes of different types of transit service.�� Definition: In 2010, the RTTF recommended that Metro create and adopt a new set of performance measures by service type. As Metro developed the Service Guidelines, Metro identified two types of service, based on the market served – those that serve the Seattle core (downtown Seattle, First Hill, Capitol Hill, South Lake Union, the University District or Uptown) and those that do not serve the Seattle core. Metro evaluates performance by service type and by whether the service operates all-day or during peak-periods. In addition, Metro is currently following policies updated in 2013 by incorporating alternative services more fully into performance measurement and evaluating these services separately. As noted in the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) peer review of Metro Transit, ��Metro could continue to evaluate opportunities to revise the service guidelines to compare service productivity by service type as this enables a more appropriate analysis of service.�� With Task Force guidance, Metro could introduce a different or expanded way of defining service types beyond services that do or do not serve the Seattle core. Different types of fixed route transit services serve different purposes depending on the transportation needs of an area, land use characteristics, density of population and trip-generating attractions. Transit that serves these different purposes could be held to different productivity standards. Task Force work: The Task Force will review and consider the transit service types that are currently included in the guidelines and make recommendations on potential additional service types, performance measures, and how to serve different areas of the county, considering and analyzing prior service change decisions. For each suggested service type, including alternative services, the Task Force will review potential performance measures, such as crowding standards, rides per hour (platform and revenue), costs per trip, et al, and may recommend modifications to achieve desired outcomes that could be incorporated into the service guidelines. Within the context of the policy basis for setting target service levels of 50 percent productivity, 25 percent social equity and 25 percent geographic value, the Task Force shall discuss the tensions between productivity, geographic value and social equity, and consider the trade-offs of different performance measures for different types of service. Desired outcomes shall address the appropriate balance between meeting these different goals in service allocation. 2. Geographic value: The proviso asks Metro to review and make recommendations on ��approaches to evaluating how the goal of geographic value is included in the Metro Service Guidelines, including minimum service standards.��

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Attachment A February 23, 2015 4 Definition: In 2010, the RTTF recommended that the policy guidance for making service reduction and service growth decisions should be based on three principles, one of which is to provide geographic value throughout the county. According to the RTTF, service allocation decisions (for both reductions and growth) must be perceived as ��fair�� throughout the county and should is represented by three elements – balancing access with productivity, tax equity, and economic vitality. As Metro developed the service guidelines, Metro identified 64 Transit Activity Centers that are distributed throughout King County and include major destinations and transit attractions, such as large employment sites, significant healthcare institutions and major social service agencies. These Transit Activity Centers, taken together with the 17 regional growth centers and four manufacturing/industrial centers, represent activity nodes throughout King County that form the basis for an interconnected transit network throughout the urban growth area of King County. Metro identifies primary connections between centers as warranting a higher level of service – these connections are the predominant transit connections between centers, based on a combination of ridership and travel time. The guidelines also incorporate geographic value by classifying routes by market served – Seattle core and non-Seattle core – as described in the social equity section above. This classification allows us to compare similar routes when assessing productivity. Routes that serve the Seattle core are expected to perform at a higher level because their market potential is greater than routes serving other parts of King County. With Task Force guidance, Metro could look at how geographic value is represented in the transit system, including potential introduction of minimum service levels on the primary connections between centers to ensure that the more dispersed transit activity centers are connected at usable service levels to the main destinations that people travel. Metro could also examine whether the function that park- and-rides play in providing access to the transit network is adequately reflected in the guidelines. Task Force work: In reviewing the geographic value standards and performance measures, the Task Force will consider and make recommendations on minimum levels of service established by the service guidelines or added through future Long Range Planning efforts, including as they affect local jurisdictions and unincorporated areas. The Task Force will also consider and make recommendations on the role of park-and-rides in providing geographic value. Within the context of the policy basis for setting target service levels of 50 percent productivity, 25 percent social equity and 25 percent geographic value, the Task Force shall discuss the tensions between productivity, geographic value and social equity, and consider the trade-offs of different performance measures for different types of service. Desired outcomes shall address the appropriate balance between meeting these different goals in service allocation. 3. Social equity: The proviso asks Metro to review and make recommendations on ��approaches to evaluating how the goal of social equity is included in the Metro Service Guidelines.�� Definition: In 2010, the RTTF recommended that the policy guidance for making service reduction and service growth decisions should be based on three principles, one of which is to ensure social equity. As Metro developed the service guidelines, Metro determined that it would identify areas where low- income and minority populations are concentrated as warranting higher levels of service. Metro determines low-income and minority census tracts using census data, and then compares the

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Attachment A February 23, 2015 5 percentage of people who board buses in these areas with the county average. Metro evaluates changes to its service network using Federal Transit Administration requirements, including Title VI, which calls for changes not to cause a disparate impact on minority populations or a disproportionate burden on low-income populations. In 2013, Metro updated its service guidelines to include information about Title VI. Metro��s evaluation of productivity and ridership in the service guidelines also reinforces the targeting of service where transit dependent communities exist. With Task Force guidance, Metro could expand the social equity measures in the guidelines to include more specific information about where services are located where such information exists. Metro could also examine incorporating destination information about where social services are located, not just where people are traveling from, into the service guidelines process. Task Force work: in reviewing the social equity goal, the Task Force will consider and make recommendations on additional ways to incorporate social equity measures in the guidelines, such as incorporating social service agencies into the analysis. The Task Force may examine the available information and data on social and human services, shifting land uses and demographic trends. Within the context of the policy basis for setting target service levels of 50 percent productivity, 25 percent social equity and 25 percent geographic value, the Task Force shall discuss the tensions between productivity, geographic value and social equity, and consider the trade-offs of different performance measures for different types of service. Desired outcomes shall address the appropriate balance between meeting these different goals in service allocation. 4. Financial policies for purchase of additional services: The proviso asks Metro to ��outline financial policies for purchase of additional services within a municipality or among multiple municipalities.�� Definition: Metro has established the Community Mobility Contract (CMC) program that allows cities or entities to purchase transit service beyond what Metro is able to provide given financial constraints. With Task Force guidance, Metro could build on the work that is being completed for the CMC program and identify guidelines that could be included in the Service Guidelines update. Task Force work: The Task Force will consider the newly established CMC program and the current financial policies for the purchase of additional services within a municipality or among multiple municipalities as it relates to the Service Guidelines. The Task Force may make recommendations on changes to the guidelines as they relate to the CMC program. 5. Guidelines for alternative services implementation: The proviso asks Metro to ��outline guidelines for alternative services implementation.�� Definition: The 2015-2016 Transit budget earmarks $12 million over two years for alternative services implementation. Metro is developing an alternative services program and has identified a service family for alternative service in the service guidelines. With Task Force guidance, Metro could build on the work that is being done for the Alternative Services Program and identify guidelines that could be included in the Service Guidelines update. Metro��s Five- Year Implementation Plan for Alternatives to Traditional Transit Service Delivery (Alternative Services Plan) was adopted in 2012. This plan is intended to guide Metro��s decision-making about the provision

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Attachment A February 23, 2015 6 of alternatives to fixed route service in King County between 2012 and 2017 and provides additional detail on product types, outreach process, and candidate areas for alternative service delivery. Building on this plan, the 2015-2016 budget includes funding to expand the program to mitigate for fixed route transit service reductions, right-size for cost-efficiency and provide complementary services. Task Force work: The Task Force will build on the work completed for the Alternative Service Delivery five-year implementation plan and the 2015-2016 budget. The Task Force will review the alternative service type and guidelines for implementation as part of the service types and geographic value discussions. The Task Force may make recommendations on changes to the Service Guidelines as they relate to the alternative services program.


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Attachment A February 23, 2015 7
Roles and Responsibilities
This section outlines the roles and responsibilities of the facilitator/mediator, Metro staff and the Service Guidelines Task Force members.
Responsibilities of the Facilitator/Mediator
We propose using a facilitator modeled after the Regional Transit Task force effort. The facilitator/mediator will be responsible for the following list of tasks. This task list may be updated in the future. Lay the Process Foundation • Conduct initial communication with Task Force members and County Councilmembers. • Help with preparation of initial materials for Task Force members. • Prepare and review materials and agendas for Task Force meetings. Build the Framework of Consensus • Facilitate Task Force meetings. • Conduct ongoing communication with Task Force members. • Facilitate sub-committee meetings as needed. • Communicate and meet with Project Coordination Team and Interbranch Working Group. Finalize the Recommendations • Prepare final recommendations and summary report for regional, local and unincorporated areas. • Participate in and prepare for briefings and updates of County Executive, County Council, and other stakeholders.
Responsibilities of Metro Staff
Metro staff will be responsible for the following list of tasks. This task list may be updated in the future. Lay the Process Foundation • Set up Task Force meetings and framework. • Prepare initial materials for Task Force members. • Prepare materials and agendas for Task Force meetings. Build the Framework of Consensus • Handle meeting logistics and materials preparation for all meetings. • Respond to requests for information. Finalize the Recommendations • Prepare final recommendations and summary report for regional, local and unincorporated areas. • Participate in and prepare for briefings and updates of County Executive, County Council and other stakeholders.


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Attachment A February 23, 2015 8
Responsibilities of Task Force Members
Task Force Members will be engaged in the following list of activities. This list may be updated in the future. Lay the Process Foundation • Participate in initial interviews with Facilitator and:
o Express opinions, perspectives, and interests. o Identify possible solutions that might be proposed during the meetings.
Build the Framework of Consensus • Attend Task Force meetings between February and May. Meetings are expected to be three hours each. • Communicate as needed with Facilitator between meetings. • Attend sub-committee meetings as needed. • Keep an open mind about possible solutions that could reflect a consensus among Task Force members. • Work together to identify a consensus set of recommendations to the Facilitator and Metro. Finalize the Recommendations • Review and provide comments on recommendations.
Responsibilities of Project Coordination Team
The Project Coordination Team will consist of members of Metro staff, the Facilitator, County Council central staff, and County Executive staff, and will be engaged in the following list of activities. This list may be updated in the future. Lay the Process Foundation • Prepare agendas and review materials for Service Guidelines Task Force meetings. Build the Framework of Consensus • Attend Task Force meetings between February and May. Meetings are expected to be three hours each. • Prepare agendas and review materials for Service Guidelines Task Force meetings. Finalize the Recommendations • Review final recommendations and summary report for regional, local and unincorporated areas. • Participate in and prepare for briefings and updates of County Executive, County Council and other stakeholders.
Responsibilities of Interbranch Working Group
We propose using an Interbranch Working Group, with staff representatives of all nine King County Councilmembers, County Council Central staff, County Executive staff, Metro staff and the facilitator, modeled after the Regional Transit Task force effort. The Interbranch Working Group will be responsible for the following list of tasks. This task list may be updated in the future. Lay the Process Foundation • Attend meetings and inform stakeholders about process.

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Attachment A February 23, 2015 9 Build the Framework of Consensus • Attend Interbranch Working Group meetings between February and May. Meetings are expected to be an hour and a half each. • Communicate as needed with Metro staff between meetings. • Communicate with and inform stakeholders about the process. Finalize the Recommendations • Review final recommendations and summary report for regional, local and unincorporated areas. • Participate in briefings and updates of County Council and other stakeholders.


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Attachment A February 23, 2015 10
Tasks, Deliverables, Milestones and Budget
The table below outlines the tasks involved in supporting the Task Force, as well as deliverables, and milestones.
Tasks, Deliverables, and Milestones
Tasks Deliverables Responsibility Milestones Lay the Process Foundation
Prepare & Reach Agreement on Scope of Work and Schedule Final invitation letter to Task Force members Facilitator Mid-January, 2015 Conduct initial communication with Task Force Members Initial interviews w/ Task Force members and County Councilmembers Facilitator Mid-February, 2015 Memo that summarizes members interests, and provides a statement of key findings and mutual interests Facilitator End of February, 2015 Set up Task Force meetings and framework Schedule meetings for Task Force, Interbranch Working Group and Project Coordination Team Metro Project Manager Mid-January, 2015 Provide all materials, logistic support for meetings Metro Project Manager Ongoing Prepare initial materials for Task Force Create background notebook Metro Project Manager Mid-February, 2015 Review and shape background notebook Facilitator Mid-February, 2015 Prepare Materials for Task Force Meetings Work with Project Coordination Team to prepare and establish Task Force meeting agendas Facilitator 1-2 times per month Prepare meeting materials, presentations Metro Project Manager 1-2 times per month Review and comment on meeting agendas, materials and presentations Facilitator 1-2 times per month

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Attachment A February 23, 2015 11
Tasks Deliverables Responsibility Milestones Build the Framework of Consensus
Facilitate Task Force Meetings Prepare for, facilitate and follow-up on Task Force meetings Facilitator 1-2 times per month Prepare ground rules Facilitator Mid-February, 2015 Prepare and distribute meeting summaries Facilitator 1-2 times per month Handle meeting logistics and materials preparation Metro Project Manager Ongoing Conduct ongoing communication with Task Force members Build relationships with Task Force members Facilitator Ongoing Communicate with members between meetings Facilitator Ongoing Respond to requests for information Metro Project Manager Ongoing Facilitate sub-committee meetings (if needed) Facilitate and support sub-committees as needed Metro/Facilitator As needed Communicate with Staff and Leadership Teams Project Coordination Team logistics Metro Project Manager 1-2 times per month Interbranch Working Group meeting logistics Metro Project Manager Monthly Attend Project Coordination Team and Interbranch Working Group meetings Metro/Facilitator 2-4 times per month Coordinate with county staff on a regular basis Facilitator Ongoing
Finalize the Recommendations
Approve Final Recommendations Task Force Final summary recommendations Task Force Early June, 2015 Prepare Final Summary Report Develop outline of draft recommendations Facilitator End of June, 2015 Draft and support preparation of summary report Metro/ Facilitator Mid June, 2015 Final summary report/Task Force recommendations Metro/ Facilitator Early July, 2015 Approve Final Recommendations and Summary Report Final Summary report/Task Force recommendations Task Force Early July, 2015 Participate in and prepare for briefings and updates Prepare presentation materials summarizing Task Force work Metro/ Facilitator Early July, 2015

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Attachment A February 23, 2015 12 of County Executive, County Council and Other Stakeholders Presentations to stakeholders as needed Metro/ Facilitator As needed Participate in final meeting to review update to Strategic Plan and Service Guidelines Strategic Plan and Service Guidelines update Task Force September, 2015
Budget
The budget for the Task Force is $150,000.


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Attachment A February 23, 2015 13
Schedule and Timeline
This section shows the expected schedule for the Task Force process. There will be six full Task Force meetings, with sub-committee meetings as needed. This schedule is aligned with the Long Range Plan schedule and the Strategic Plan and Service Guidelines update schedule. The outcome of the Task Force process will influence both of these processes; Metro needs adequate time to produce a report and allow time for County Council review and adoption.
Proposed Schedule*
M T W Th F Full Task Force Meeting Topic
January 5 6 7 8 9 12 13 14 15 16 19 20 21 22 23 26 27 28 29 30 February 2 3 4 5
6
9 10 11 12 13 16 17 18 19 20 Overview and introductions 23 24 25 26 27 March 2 3 4 5
6
Service guidelines, frame social equity discussion 9 10 11 12 13 16 17 18 19 20 23 24 25 26 27 April 30 31 1 2
3
Social equity, frame service types & alternative services discussion 6 7 8 9 10 13 14 15 16 17 20 21 22 23 24 27 28 29 30 1 Service types & alternative services, frame geographic value discussion May 4 5 6 7 8 11 12 13 14 15 18 19 20 21 22 Geographic value, financial policies for purchase of additional services 25 26 27 28 29 June 1 2 3 4
5
Continued policy discussion, final discussion, closing remarks 8 9 10 11 12 15 16 17 18 19 22 23 24 25 26 SGTF meetings
Project Coordination Team meetings
Interbranch meetings * A Task Force meeting will be held in July to review and approve the Final Recommendations and Summary
Report; and a final Task Force meeting will be in September 2015 to review how the recommendations are
incorporated into the Strategic Plan and Service Guidelines.

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Attachment A February 23, 2015 14
Materials Distribution
The initial Task Force notebook will be available one week in advance of the first meeting. Subsequent meeting materials will be available one week prior to the meeting. These materials will be sent out to Task Force members, County Councilmembers, County Council staff, County Executive staff, and Metro staff.

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Attachment A February 23, 2015 15
Integration with Long Range Plan and Other Planning Efforts
This section shows how the Task Force will be integrated with Long Range Planning efforts.
Metro��s Long Range Plan
The Service Guidelines Task Force will take place in the first part of 2015 so that it can influence the long range planning work, scheduled to be complete by mid-2016, and the Service Guidelines update, scheduled to be complete by April 2016. Metro��s Long Range Plan is coordinated with regional planning efforts being undertaken by Sound Transit, the Puget Sound Regional Council, local jurisdictions and stakeholders. Corridor analyses that are completed as part of the Task Force work will include Sound Transit as well as Metro corridors. A high-level timeline that shows how the Long Range Plan and Service Guidelines update will take place in the same timeframe is shown below. As we move through the Long Range Plan process, updates to the Council and other stakeholders will take place on a regular basis.


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Attachment A February 23, 2015 16
Task Force Membership Criteria
Membership of the Task Force includes 20-30 executive level participants representing a variety of interests throughout King County. Members are not necessarily transit experts, but are reasonably familiar with how the transportation system affects quality of life, and transit��s relationship to land use and mobility. Membership includes a mix of elected officials representing jurisdictions across King County, corporate/business leaders, labor, major institutions, human and social services, large employers, environmental groups, Transit Advisory Commission members, mobility advocates, and the metropolitan planning organization. Members have been identified through consultation with the King County Council and have been recruited by the County Executive��s office and the King County Department of Transportation.

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