Metropolitan Transportation Commission (San Francisco Bay Area)
The Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) is the government agency responsible for regional transportation planning and financing in the San Francisco Bay Area. It was created in 1970 by the State of California, with support from the Bay Area Council, to coordinate transportation services in the Bay Area's nine counties.
MTC is designated a regional transportation planning agency (RTPA) by the State of California and a metropolitan planning organization (MPO) by the federal government. MTC is not the Bay Area's council of governments (COG); the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) holds that role.
MTC administers state-provided money through the Transportation Development Act (TDA) and has decision-making authority over the State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP). MTC administers federal funding through various grant programs, including the Transportation for Livable Communities (TLC) Program, Low Income Flexible Transportation (LIFT) Program, and Innovative Climate Grants Program.
MTC has overseen administration of toll revenue collected on the seven State-owned bridges in the Bay Area through the Bay Area Toll Authority (BATA) since 2005. From 1997 through 2004, BATA administered only a portion of the toll revenue.
Since 1999, MTC has worked to implement a regional transit fare-collection system called Clipper (formerly TransLink), where transit riders use a single card to pay fares on the region's different transit systems.
MTC manages various regional operational programs, including 511, the Freeway Service Patrol (FSP), call boxes, ridesharing, FasTrak electronic toll collection, regional pavement management (including the pavement management system software StreetSaver), arterial operations, and regional signal timing programs.
MTC operates a library that jointly supports MTC and ABAG. The library, which is open to the public, has a collection covering transportation and planning issues for the Bay Area.
MTC is guided by a 21-member board of commissioners:
- Sixteen commissioners are appointed by local elected officials.
- The five most populous counties have two representatives each: The respective counties' board of supervisors select one representative, and the mayors of the cities within the respective counties appoint the other.
- The Mayor of Oakland and the Mayor of San Jose each appoint a commissioner
- The four remaining counties appoint one commissioner each, with the commissioners representing both the cities and the board of supervisors for their respective counties.
- Two members represent regional agencies: ABAG and the Bay Conservation and Development Commission.
- Three non-voting members are appointed to represent the federal housing department and federal and state transportation agencies.
MTC is headquartered in Oakland and has a staff of approximately 130 people.