Transportation Development Act and State Transit Assistance | Fund + Invest | Our Work

Transportation Development Act and State Transit Assistance

Transportation Development Act

The Transportation Development Act, or TDA, has long been a cornerstone of state transit funding.

This state law allowed each county to establish a quarter-cent sales tax to finance a wide variety of transportation projects, including:

  • Transit operations
  • Bus and rail projects
  • Special transit services for disabled riders
  • Pedestrian and bicycle facilities
  • Transportation planning.

State Transit Assistance

State Transit Assistance, or STA, funds are generated by the sales tax on diesel fuel, and the amount of money available for transit agencies varies from year to year based on the ups and downs of diesel prices. The State splits the STA program into two components:

  • Population-based funds: MTC receives STA based on our share of the population. MTC determines how to use these funds (Resolution 3837).
  • Revenue-based funds: The State allocates funds to transit operators based on their revenue as defined by PUC 99314 (b).

Operators have full discretion over the use of TDA and most of STA apportioned to them. Funds may be used by transit operators for both capital projects and transit operations. For most smaller transit agencies, TDA and STA are their main sources of operating funds.

Questions? Contact Cheryl Chi, TDA Program Manager, at cchi@mtc.ca.gov or (415) 778-5339

Every year, MTC prepares a Fund Estimate to estimate how much funding will be available through TDA, STA, the AB 1107 sales tax, and some other sources, Visit the Fund Estimate page to learn more.

Transit operators submit allocation requests for TDA and STA funds by submitting an application for funds. MTC is responsible for allocating and disbursing funds. For more information, go to the Allocation Requests and Audits page.

MTC is required each year to recommend productivity improvements to Bay Area transit operators. The Commission does this through its annual Productivity Improvement Program (PIP). Transit agencies are required to make a reasonable effort to implement their projects in the PIP in order to receive TDA and STA funds.