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Old 08-07-2012, 01:06 PM
 
Location: Norcross, GA
195 posts, read 378,962 times
Reputation: 85

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I wonder if some friends of his need money or something.

Article

MARTA Board Chairman Frederick Daniels on Monday pledged that the transit agency would rein in spending to prove to voters and legislators that it is a good steward of tax dollars.

The board, which already has a consulting firm searching for ways to cut spending and improve efficiency, now needs to educate the public, the governor and the legislature about how it's shoring up its finances, he said. Monday, the board approved restructuring $200 million in bond issues calculated to save the agency $1.5 million over two years.

"A savings of $1.5 million is significant," Daniels said after the meeting. "This board is taking a stand on operating efficiency."

Last week, Gov. Nathan Deal said that MARTA needed to reform its operation. The governor indicated voters rejected the regional transportation sales tax last Tuesday in part because $600 million was earmarked for MARTA maintenance and infrastructure upgrades, $700 million for the $1.6 billion Clifton Corridor light rail line and $225 million for an all-day express bus service running between south DeKalb county and employment centers.

State Rep. Mike Jacobs, R-Atlanta, said that MARTA has to demonstrate to lawmakers that it is conservative in spending and willing to consider privatization of some services to win legislative cooperation. MARTA wants lawmakers to allow it more flexibility in how it spends sales tax.

"It is quite possible that there will be more conversation between the legislature and MARTA," said Jacobs, who chairs the joint-legislative committee that monitors MARTA. "There are large portions of MARTA operations that you could privatize."

Jacobs said MARTA could possibly save money by privatizing its bus service and some internal operations such as payroll.

The failure of the transit tax was a set back for transportation projects and improving the infrastructure but MARTA officials said it would not impact safety. Rich Krisak, MARTA assistant general manager for rail operations, was cautiously optimistic that federal grants could help address the estimated $2 billion in needed maintenance and upgrades over the next decade.

"We don't stand by ourselves," he said. "The federal government is a strong funding partner."

Donald Williams, senior director for transportation planning, said the agency would continue the planning and environmental studies required for the Clifton Corridor light-rail and other projects that were to be funded by the rejected transportation sales tax.

But Williams acknowledged that, with the failure of the regional transportation sales tax, the agency would not be able to build the projects with its current funding restraints. Federal construction grants usually requires a 50 percent local match for construction grants for new transit projects, which would mean $800 million for the light rail.

"We would certainly need additional funding," he said.
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Old 08-07-2012, 01:33 PM
JPD
 
12,159 posts, read 15,028,738 times
Reputation: 7906
No surprise there. He wants to privatize everything. He's a skipping record when it comes to privatization.
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Old 08-07-2012, 01:34 PM
 
Location: southern california
55,502 posts, read 74,405,087 times
Reputation: 47894
privatizing government services is a great idea.
police teachers and firemen need to be next.
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Old 08-07-2012, 01:45 PM
 
Location: St Simons Island, GA
22,805 posts, read 34,848,293 times
Reputation: 14928
Quote:
Originally Posted by JPD View Post
No surprise there. He wants to privatize everything. He's a skipping record when it comes to privatization.
Is it so out of the realm of possibility? There are private bus lines that have been running here for years ie Royal.
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Old 08-07-2012, 02:43 PM
 
29,257 posts, read 26,193,943 times
Reputation: 10213
Quote:
Originally Posted by LovinDecatur View Post
Is it so out of the realm of possibility? There are private bus lines that have been running here for years ie Royal.
I think it's worth talking about.

I'd like to see us move to a system where people are paying more of the true cost of transportation. The markets will never be able to sort things out so long as there are massive hidden subsidies, and that applies to auto travel as well.
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Old 08-08-2012, 05:09 AM
 
3,257 posts, read 4,661,025 times
Reputation: 1887
Couldn't we start by nixing Buford Highway service and allowing the existing private buses that serve it to have free transfers to MARTA? I don't see what we lose by doing that, and we save a good bit of money.

Then investigate the ability of similar lines to function with a subsidy.
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Old 08-08-2012, 05:33 AM
 
Location: St Simons Island, GA
22,805 posts, read 34,848,293 times
Reputation: 14928
Quote:
Originally Posted by testa50 View Post
Couldn't we start by nixing Buford Highway service and allowing the existing private buses that serve it to have free transfers to MARTA? I don't see what we lose by doing that, and we save a good bit of money.

Then investigate the ability of similar lines to function with a subsidy.
Private competition notwithstanding, the #39 is arguably one of the system's most popular bus routes. Thats why it runs so frequently. I cant see MARTA ending it.
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Old 08-08-2012, 06:16 AM
 
3,257 posts, read 4,661,025 times
Reputation: 1887
Quote:
Originally Posted by LovinDecatur View Post
Private competition notwithstanding, the #39 is arguably one of the system's most popular bus routes. Thats why it runs so frequently. I cant see MARTA ending it.
Oh, I'm sure it is. Those buses are normally quite full (although normal MARTA buses are more full than people normally give them credit for).

To properly address the question, we'd need to know whether the Buford Highway buses break even or lose money. Other routes lose money, but if this one is profitable, then there's no problem with MARTA running it. If it loses money despite its popularity, maybe the private sector bus line should take over.
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Old 08-08-2012, 06:32 AM
 
29,257 posts, read 26,193,943 times
Reputation: 10213
Is there a line by line analysis of MARTA bus routes showing average ridership, profitability, etc.?

Some of them may need to be changed or discontinued but my experience with MARTA is that they are very embedded when it comes to things like that. I once nearly a year trying to get them to modify a route by one block -- it would have increased service significantly and eliminated duplication with another route. They finally, grudgingly agreed to do it but changed it back a few weeks later without notice.
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Old 08-08-2012, 08:56 AM
 
Location: Kirkwood
23,254 posts, read 17,455,920 times
Reputation: 5375
Quote:
Couldn't we start by nixing Buford Highway service and allowing the existing private buses that serve it to have free transfers to MARTA? I don't see what we lose by doing that, and we save a good bit of money.

Then investigate the ability of similar lines to function with a subsidy.
Restrict the private bus line so it does not compete with MARTA. #39 is very popular and runs at capacity. Buford Hwy corridor is a perfect candidate for BRT.
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