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 General Announcements

A Note from the CEO (July 2015)

Effective: Jul 02 - Sep 09 2015

On June 26, 2015 the Santa Cruz Metropolitan Transit District (METRO) Board of Directors held a public hearing at the Santa Cruz City Council Chambers on the FY16 and FY17 budget. The draft budget, as presented to the Board on May 22nd, proposed an operating budget of $49,380,125 for FY16, which reflects only 1.89% growth over the FY15 budget. The Consumer Price Index (CPI) for FY16 is estimated to be 2.5%.

FY16 and FY17 Draft Budget Proposal

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Included in the draft budget is anticipated increased revenue, resulting from the Board’s actions at the April 10th public hearing to restructure fares on the Highway 17 commuter service and ParaCruz, and estimated operational savings, resulting from the alignment of ParaCruz service to the fixed-route service (see details on the next page). In addition to fare and service restructuring, this budget includes close to $1.3 million in personnel and non-personnel savings and does not fund some Board authorized management positions. Nearly all non-personnel expenses were reduced to reflect the FY14 actual expenses. As discussed here in previous issues of Headways, the structural deficit will take a few years to resolve. Therefore, in FY16, METRO will continue to use $4.2 million in capital eligible state and federal dollars in the operating fund and is projected to use one-time reserves in the amount of $4.8 million to achieve a balanced budget. Finally the current projection is that METRO will not have enough one-time reserves to balance the budget in FY17 (July 1, 2016 – June 30, 2017).

Next Steps

METRO will next begin a comprehensive review of the fixed-route service and convene public meetings throughout the county over the next eight months to solicit public input. The study will review current service to ensure that it properly serves the needs of the county, and analyze how best to provide service within budgetary limitations.

Alex Clifford, CEO
Santa Cruz METRO

Metro Advisory Committee (MAC) Vacancies

Effective: Jul 02 - Sep 09 2015

The METRO Advisory Committee (MAC) currently has three vacancies. If you have an interest in participating in this important committee, please go to our METRO Advisory Committee page to review the meeting schedule and submit an application.

Notice of Public Outreach Meetings: Watsonville Transit Center (WTC)

Effective: Jul 08 - Jul 17 2015

Santa Cruz METRO, in association with the City of Watsonville, will be holding the 2nd round of outreach meetings to gain feedback from the public on the desired design and vision of the WTC and its place in the Downtown Watsonville community.  Meetings will be held on the following dates:

July 8th, 2015 from 1:00-4:00pm at the Watsonville Transit Center, 475 Rodriguez Street
July 8th, 2015 from 5:30-7:30pm at the Civic Plaza Community Room (4th floor), 275 Main Street
July 17th, 2015 from 2:00-7:00pm at the Watsonville Farmer’s Market

Please see our Watsonville Transit Center Project page for more details.

Amtrak Highway 17 Express Fare and Pass Increases

See Route Schedule: 17     See Route Map: 17    

Effective: Sep 10 2015

  • Increase of Base Fare (Cash) from $5 to $7
  • Increase of 31-Day Pass from $113 to $145
  • Increase of Day Pass from $10 to $14
  • Increase of Discount Fare from $2.50 to $3.50
  • Discontinuation of 5-Day Pass (will no longer valid as of 9/10/2015)
  • Introduction of a new 15-Ride pass for $94.50

ParaCruz Service Change and Fare Increase

Effective: Sep 10 2015

METRO ParaCruz Service Days and Hours will be changing:

The days and hours that paratransit service operates will change to reflect the days and hours that METRO local fixed route bus service operates in same area (excluding Amtrak Highway 17 Express).

  • If fixed route bus service operates limited trips, paratransit service will be available only during the times when those fixed route bus trips are operating
  • Weekend and holiday paratransit service will only be provided when and where local fixed-route bus service is operating

METRO ParaCruz Fares will be changing:

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  • Fixed Route Bus Equivalent Fares
    • If a fixed route passenger needs to board one bus to get to ther idestination, they would pay a single one-way fare ($2)
    • If a fixed route passenger needs to board two buses to get to their destination, they would pay two one-way fares ($4)
  • Paratransit Fares
    • A Reservationist will inform the paratransit passenger of the exact fare at the time of booking the ride, based on the following criteria:
    • If a paratransit passenger’s ride is equivalent to a single fixed route bus fare, they would pay a paratransit base fare ($4)
    • If a paratransit passenger’s ride is equivalent to two or more fixed route bus fares, they would pay a paratransit base fare plus an additional $2 ($6 maximum)
  • Premium Fares
    • For will-call returns, a paratransit passenger will pay twice the $4 base fare ($8)
    • For a re-dispatched vehicle, a paratransit passenger will pay four times the $4 base fare ($16)

For additional information call METRO ParaCruz at (831) 425-4664, or email

 Quarterly Service Updates

Summer Service Jul 2, 2015 - Sep 9, 2015

Route 3 - Mission / Natural Bridges

See Route Schedule: 03     See Route Map: 03    

Weekends:  For summer service only, Route 3 has altered routing in order to avoid weekend beach traffic.  This route will not serve the Beach/Boardwalk area.

Route 68 - Live Oak via Broadway/Portola

See Route Schedule: 68     See Route Map: 68    

Weekends: For the summer bid only, Route 68 has altered its routing in order to avoid weekend beach traffic.  This route will now use Broadway between Front Street and Ocean Street instead of San Lorenzo Blvd.  

Route 69 - Capitola Road / Cabrillo / Watsonville

See Route Schedule: 69A 69W     See Route Map: 69A 69W    

Weekday: New runtime tables have been developed that affect most trips.

Route 71 - Santa Cruz / Watsonville

See Route Schedule: 71     See Route Map: 71    

Daily: For the summer only, the last departure will now go into service at 11:35 PM at the Boardwalk (stop: Cliff and Beach) before continuing to Santa Cruz Metro Center for the regularly scheduled 11:45 PM departure.  

Weekday: New timetables have been developed that affect most trips.

Route 91X - Commuter Express Santa Cruz / Watsonville

See Route Schedule: 91X     See Route Map: 91X    

Weekday: New runtime tables have been developed that affect most trips.

Service Alerts

Service Alerts

None at this time.
Public Hearings

Public Hearings

None at this time.