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August 31, 2017 <br />Honorable Jeffrey B. Barton <br />Presiding Judge of the Superior Court <br />Main Courthouse <br />Third Floor, Department P <br />220 West Broadway <br />San Diego, CA 92101 <br />Re: Response to the San Diego County Grand Jury Report: “Got A Ticket? A <br />North County Transit District Ticket To Ride Is Hard To Get” <br />Dear Honorable Judge Barton: <br />The North County Transit District (NCTD) provides this letter in response to the San <br />Diego County Grand Jury Report: “Got A Ticket? A North County Transit District Ticket <br />To Ride Is Hard To Get”. NCTD appreciates the opportunity to review and respond to <br />the report, and for the valuable feedback provided as a result of the investigation <br />conducted by the Grand Jury. <br />BACKGROUND <br />In 2003, the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) procured the current <br />regional fare system used by both the San Diego Metropolitan Transit System (MTS) <br />and NCTD. SANDAG was the lead agency for implementing the system throughout the <br />region and was responsible for the overall management of the system. The San Diego <br />region was progressive in its early implementation of smart card technology. In 2014, <br />SANDAG transferred the responsibility to manage the regional fare system to MTS, <br />which they continue to administer today. <br />The regional fare system implemented by the region in 2003 has not been significantly <br />upgraded to be commensurate with the technological and operational advancements <br />made within the transportation industry since the initial implementation. As such, NCTD <br />and MTS are aware, through customer feedback and observations, that the regional <br />ticket vending machines (TVMs) have produced some challenges for customers <br />attempting to purchase tickets. These challenges faced by NCTD customers are not <br />isolated to the San Diego region. The operation of TVMs from a customer perspective <br />is largely the same across the industry. <br />Given that the current system remains largely unchanged from the initial <br />implementation, it is not feasible or possible in certain instances to implement all of the <br />changes that are needed to improve performance. Accordingly, NCTD and MTS have <br />been diligently working to develop specifications to support the future procurement of <br />an upgraded fare revenue system focused on improving the customer riding experience