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Job - General Manager - Marin County Transit District

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  • asha.weinstein@sjsu.edu
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 2, 2006
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      ----- Forwarded by Asha Weinstein/SJSU on 06/02/2006 05:12 PM -----




      This is an opportunity to develop and lead an established organization with
      a significantly expanded role in providing local transit services for one of
      the San Francisco Bay Area’s most dynamic counties.


      Created in 1964 by Marin County voters, the Marin County Transit District
      provides local transit service within the County. Until 2003 the District’
      sprimary fixed route transit function was to act as a “pass through” agency
      providing state and federal funding for local transit service within the
      County to Golden Gate Transit, the regional transit provider, which also
      planned, managed, and operated local service. The District also managed
      contracts for

      paratransit and rural services.

      In 2003 for financial reasons, Golden Gate Transit implemented a major
      restructuring of its routes resulting in significant reductions in regional
      transit service. To save money and better match transit service to
      increasing local service demands, Golden Gate Transit and the District
      agreed to truncate routes that previously crossed county lines and to create
      new local routes that would operate entirely within Marin County. Many
      regional routes were thus redefined as local routes, ultimately transferring
      responsibility for these routes from Golden Gate Transit to the District.
      The District has recently entered into a new, $80 million, five year
      agreement with Golden Gate Transit to provide approximately 122,000 local
      service hours annually. In 2005 local routes accounted for well over 3
      million passengers making the District one of the largest local transit
      operations in California that does not directly serve a major urban center.

      In 2004 public transportation in Marin County received a significant new
      funding source with the passage of Measure A, a special tax measure raising
      the countywide sales tax rate by one half cent to implement a 20-year
      Transportation Plan. Requiring a two-thirds voter approval for passage,
      Marin voters passed Measure A with over 71% approval. One of the Plan’s
      implementation strategies is to “develop a seamless local bus transit system
      that improves mobility and service community needs, including special
      transit for seniors and the disabled” and applies 55% of the new proceeds
      (estimated at $182 million over 20 years) to this effort. With the approval
      of Measure A Marin becomes a “self help county” enabling projects and
      programs outlined in the Plan to bring an increased share of funding from
      other sources.

      As of May 2006 the District’s responsibilities include:

      • Fixed route transit – all routes that begin and end in Marin County,
      currently operated by Golden Gate Transit.

      • School-oriented special bus trips designed to serve schools at bell times,
      currently operated by Golden Gate Transit (272,000 trips annually).

      • Rural small-bus transit service – MV Transit recently became the operator
      of the West Marin Stagecoach (28,000 trips annually).

      • Demand responsive service for seniors and persons with disabilities:

      *Paratransit – currently operated by Whistlestop Wheels (83,000 trips

      * EZ Rider – a shuttle service in Novato currently operated by Whistlestop
      Wheels (3,000 trips annually).

      The District is governed by a seven-member Board, consisting of all five
      members of the Marin County Board of Supervisors and representatives from
      two of Marin cities/towns, all of whom are elected officials. For the last
      10 years, the District has employed one full-time planning staff member who
      reported to the Marin County Public Works Director. The District also
      received administrative, legal and support services as well as operating
      space through Marin County. With the District’s increasing responsibilities,
      the Board recently created the new position of General Manager to lead the
      District’s transformation to a full–fledged, independent agency, and
      authorized a staff increase to four positions. The District operates on a $2
      4 million proposed FY06-07 budget, including all contracts and staffing. The
      District contracts for nearly all of the 70 buses used in its services.


      Marin County is a dynamic community of 250,000 well-educated and involved
      residents. From its tidelands to the top of Mt. Tamalpais, Marin enjoys a
      high quality of life marked by beautiful beaches, groves of redwoods and
      oaks, rolling foothills, and scenic valleys. The mild year-round
      Mediterranean climate is highlighted by cool, coastal fog tempering the warm
      inland temperatures of summer. Incorporated communities include Belvedere,
      Corte Madera, Fairfax, Larkspur, Mill Valley, Novato, Ross, San Anselmo, San
      Rafael (the County seat), Sausalito, and Tiburon.

      Marin County is known for its combination of rural and suburban lifestyles.
      A recreation destination for the entire Bay Area -- the Golden Gate National
      Recreation Area and Point Reyes National Seashore are just two destinations
      out of more than 140,000 acres of public lands within Marin. The County’s
      active economy includes insurance (e.g. Fireman’s Fund), finance (e.g.
      GreenPoint Mortgage), movie and video production (e.g. Lucas Films),
      agriculture, aquaculture, computer software (e.g. Autodesk), communications
      equipment, printing, and tourism. Marin is also home to the Buck Institute,
      a world-class institute researching the process of aging.

      Marin County children excel in school. Test scores are well above the
      average. The 19 school districts in Marin range in attendance from 20 to
      8,000. There are 74 public schools that include elementary, middle, high
      school, college, continuing education, alternative education, independent
      study, and charter schools. The Marin Community College has two campuses:
      Kentfield and Novato. There are several private educational institutions for
      all age levels, including Dominican University in San Rafael.


      Under policy and administrative direction by the Board, the General Manager
      is responsible for managing the District’s overall activities including
      organizational development, contract and fiscal management, administration,
      capital improvement program, intergovernmental liaison, public relations,
      and related activities. This includes, but is not limited to:

      • leading the development of the District as an independent agency

      • assisting the Board in the development, implementation, and achievement of
      the District’s policies and objectives

      •preparing and implementing the District’s Short Range Transit Plan

      • evaluating District programs and services, and preparing recommendations
      for improvements to the Board

      •preparing, and subsequently managing, annual capital and operating budgets
      for Board approval

      •guaranteeing District funding is compliant with applicable laws and

      • overseeing the adequacy and soundness of the District’s financial

      • negotiating multiple transit operator service agreements and monitoring
      related compliance

      • advising the Board on issues of concern to the District

      • representing the District with regional, State, local officials, other
      governmental agencies and related public interest groups

      • directing/handling District media and public relations

      • handling human resources and labor relations for the District

      The District currently employs a Transit Planning Manager, two Senior
      Planners, and a part-time clerical position. All positions will report to
      the General Manager.

      Having previously operated out of the County’s Public Works Department, the
      District has recently secured a San Rafael location for its offices. It will
      be jointly located with the Transportation Authority of Marin (TAM)which
      administers the Measure A Transportation Sales Tax Expenditure Plan and
      serves as the Congestion Management Agency for the County.


      Current issues and priorities that the General Manager will need to address

      Short Range Transit Plan – In March 2006 the District’s Board approved a
      Short Range Transit Plan pursuant to Measure A. (A copy of the Plan can be
      seen on the District’s website, shown below). The District has currently set
      September 2006 as the target date to implement this Plan thus providing the
      new General Manager with the opportunity to be involved in developing the
      District’s first-ever local bus operation.

      Funding – Like most transit operators, the District relies on a variety of
      sources of funds to pay for capital and operating costs. The recent passage
      of SAFETEA-LU, the reauthorization of the federal transportation bill,
      provides new opportunities to the District. Related choices on funding
      options will affect future decisions on such major issues as equipment
      acquisition and ownership, as well as whether the District should conduct
      some or all services with its own employees. The General Manager will lead
      the analysis of these and other opportunities, evaluate related consequences
      of making various choices, and advise the Board on the funding options that
      should be pursued.

      Bus Stop Improvements – Virtually all of the local bus stops in Marin County
      require some improvements to meet accessibility requirements, improve rider
      shelter and comfort, and/or replace aging facilities. Measure A provides
      partial funding, but the General Manager will need to lead efforts to fully
      fund and subsequently implement these improvements.

      Public Information – With the broad public approval of Measure A, there is
      considerable interest in the District’s progress toward implementing the
      transit portion of the Sales Tax Expenditure Plan. Under guidance from the
      Board, the General Manager will develop effective public information
      programs to convey District activities and will personally participate in
      related efforts.

      Initial Operations – The District’s Board is looking to the General Manager
      to build the organization that will achieve the District’s mission. This
      organizational development includes the hiring of staff, coordination of
      consulting services, and the implementation of the necessary administrative

      To view further information about the Marin County Transit District, see its
      web site at: www.marintransit.org. For more information on Measure A go to



      The ideal candidate will have significant, hands-on experience in public
      transit operations and management, as well as strong skills in program
      analysis and development, communication, consensus building, budget and
      contract management, and strategic planning. The successful candidate will
      have good knowledge of the key state and federal funding sources and related
      requirements; current regulations and legislation affecting public
      transportation services; and good contacts with other leaders in
      transportation. This resourceful leader will understand how to serve the
      needs of a Board of Directors, possess a record of energy and integrity, and
      work effectively and collaboratively with customers, contractors, and local
      and regional government representatives. Experience in California,
      especially within the San Francisco Bay Area, is preferred, but not

      Specific qualifications are as follows:

      Education and Experience

      At least five years of progressively responsible experience in planning and
      operations in a transit agency preferably at the local or regional level,
      with at least three years of management experience. A Bachelor’s degree in
      transportation planning, business, public administration, engineering or
      related field is required. A Master’s degree in a related field is

      Competencies and Personal Characteristics

      In addition to the above, the ideal candidate will:

      • work effectively in a diverse community with a broad range of
      personalities and interests

      • be articulate, both orally and in writing

      • be a strong leader, who knows when to be decisive

      • have knowledge of Best Practices and manage the District’s fiscal
      resources wisely

      • be responsive to the Board

      • be collaborative; a facilitator of consensus

      • be a creative problem solver

      • handle multiple priorities effectively

      • serve impressively as District spokesperson when designated

      • be a team builder and mentor; committed to selecting quality staff and
      developing them to their fullest potential

      • be calm under pressure and possess a good sense of humor

      • be a good listener; not easily deterred by criticism or controversy

      • be politically aware and sensitive


      The annual salary for the General Manager will be up to $118,900 based on
      the qualifications of the successful candidate. The District provides
      current employees with a comprehensive benefit plan through Marin County,
      including participation in the County’s 1937 Act Retirement System. Benefits
      for the appointed General Manager will be negotiable to a limited degree.
      The General Manager will play a lead role in developing the District’s
      benefit plan.


      To be considered for this position, please submit a resume, and cover letter
      including current salary and the names of three work-related references
      directly to:

      Kris Kristensen or Kim Valenzano


      241 Lathrop Way • Sacramento, CA 95815

      916 / 263-1401 • Fax: 916 / 561-7205

      Email: resumes@...

      CPS website: www.cps.ca.gov/search

      The final filing date for this position is Friday, June 30, 2006

      Following the filing date, resumes will be screened in relation to the
      criteria outlined in this brochure. Candidates with the most relevant
      qualifications will be given preliminary interviews in early July by the
      consultants. Candidates appearing best suited will be reported to the
      District. The District will invite approximately 5-7 candidates to
      participate in a series of interviews in Marin sometime in early August. An
      offer of appointment is anticipated by mid-late August following full
      reference and background checks, and a final interview with the District’s
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