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Rail News: Amtrak

California creates local authority to oversee Pacific Surfliner service


California Gov. Jerry Brown recently signed legislation that authorizes the transfer of management for the state-supported Pacific Surfliner passenger-rail service to a local joint powers authority.

The Los Angeles-San Diego-San Luis Obispo Joint Powers Authority (LOSSAN JPA) comprises rail owners and operators, and regional transportation planning agencies in a six-county southern California region. The Pacific Surfliner is managed by the California Department of Transportation, which supports the service with a share of the $90 million in state funds allocated to intercity rail each year.

The legislation "ushers in a new era for passenger-rail service in southern California," said LOSSAN JPA Chairman Joe Kellejian in a prepared statement.

"By transferring the authority of the intercity service to the LOSSAN JPA, the service will benefit from an agency that can be more responsive to customer needs and focused on improvements to service," he said.

The LOSSAN JPA corridor accommodates more than 7 million riders annually and serves as a key freight line. For Amtrak, it is the second-busiest corridor in the nation.

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More News from 10/9/2012