In 2013, The Woodlands Township entered into an interlocal agreement with the Brazos Transit District regarding the operation of the Woodlands park and ride facilities. The Interlocal agreement provided that Brazos would continue to provide the operation and maintenance services of the park and ride facilities using existing FTA grant funds allocated in 2010 and prior, State Transit funds and user fees to support the operation and maintenance costs of the park and rides along with the contract cost of the bus operator. This agreement specified that once these old FTA funds were exhausted, the Township would assume the financial responsibility for the park and ride operations. BTD notified the Township in January, 2015, that they had used all of the 2010 (and prior FTA grant funds) available for operations and that The Township would need to assume financial operations for the park and ride operation beginning January 1, 2015.
The existing Interlocal Agreement for park and ride operations between the Township and Brazos Transit provides for the general operations but needs additional detail to outline how revenues and costs will be handled beginning January 1, 2015. Brazos will become a direct contractor to The Township effective January 1, 2015, and staff and legal counsel feel that the items listed below should be clearly defined in a Letter of Understanding between the parties. Legal counsel is also recommending that the items in the letter of understanding become part of the Interlocal Agreement with an amendment that will be brought to the Board in March, 2015.
The proposed letter of understanding is under review and will include the following provisions:
User fees – all park and ride user fees collections (with supporting documentation), will be remitted to the Township at least weekly.
Park and Ride Operating costs / Brazos – The operating costs associated with Brazos Transit managing and operating the park and ride facilities will be submitted to The Township on a monthly basis for reimbursement. This operating cost submittal should include appropriate documentation that also meets FTA reimbursement regulations.
Trolley Operating costs / The operating costs incurred by Brazos associated with the trolley operations will be submitted to the Township monthly (by BTD).
Waterway Cruiser revenues and costs – The operating costs incurred by Brazos associated with the Waterway cruiser operations will be submitted to the Township monthly (by BTD). The revenues will be deposited into a Township account weekly.
Operating costs / Commuter Bus Operator agreement – The Township will be assuming the commuter bus operator agreement effective January 1, 2015. The Bus Operator will submit their detailed monthly billing directly to The Township with proper documentation that meets FTA reimbursement requirements.
FTA Grant reimbursement – The Township will process the grant funding applications to FTA based on eligible expenses. (for park and ride and trolley services)
State Grant Funds – The Township portion of the State Grant Funds will be retained by Brazos and applied as a direct credit against costs incurred by Brazos for maintaining and operating the park and ride facilities within The Woodlands UZA. This credit will be reflected on the Brazos billing invoice to The Township.