Friday, July 24, 2009

Dissatisfied with the Metro Board and GM?

Think we need a new GM? First, you'll need a new Board. You could let the Board know your thoughts by emailing them at, but given Metro's penchant for disruptions, situations and delays, your email might never arrive. You might be better off letting those who appoint the Board know of your dissatisfaction. Results not guaranteed.

From the WMATA Compact:
"[WMATA] shall be governed by a Board of six Directors consisting of two Directors for each signatory. For Virginia, the Directors shall be appointed by the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission; for the District of Columbia, by the Council of the District of Columbia; and for Maryland, by the Washington Suburban Transit Commission."

Regarding the removal of a GM:
"All such officers (general manager, a secretary, a treasurer, a comptroller and a general counsel and such other officers as the Board may provide) shall be appointed and may be removed by the Board."

Here's who to contact:

Northern Virginia Transportation Commission

4350 North Fairfax Dr.
Suite 720
Arlington, VA 22203
Tel: (703) 524-3322
Fax: (703) 524-1756

The Council of the District of Columbia
John A. Wilson Building
Suite 5
1350 Pennsylvania Ave, NW
Washington, DC 20004
Tel: (202) 724-8000
Fax: (202) 347-3070

Washington Suburban Transit Commission (don't go too crazy with the Web design guys)
4351 Garden City Drive
Suite 305
Hyattsville, MD 20785
Tel: (301) 577-2063
Fax: (301) 577-2193

Other items:
We have to wonder about the Post here. They publish an article basically saying Metro lied, which they have yet to retract despite Metro's vehement denial of the story's content, and then the most "ire" the Post can muster are these two lame op/eds?! What gives Post? Do you guys take the Metro?
Catoe Must Show Us More Candor (WaPo)
A Broken Metro (WaPo)

House votes for Metro funding (WUSA9)
A funny cartoon from the Examiner
Metro video showing what a controller sees

add to Add to Blinkslist add to furl Digg it add to ma.gnolia Stumble It! add to simpy seed the vine TailRank post to facebook


Michael said...

Also, good luck getting the WSTC to fire or select new board members. They've appointed themselves to serve on the board.

Scott Gentzen said...

NVTC is very convenient to the Ballston Metro station. Same side of Fairfax Dr, two buildings over.

Anonymous said...

Washington Toast. Lame. We're reaching critical mass here with Metro, and they don't get it.

Michael said... doesn't get read by the board, the customer service folks read it. That's what led to the whole Google Transit disaster. I thought the Board knew about Metro not wanting to participate, but it turns out my emails to them weren't getting to the Board.

Dave Stroup said...

if you live in dc (ward 1) tell jim graham's office you won't vote for his reelection in 2010.

Anonymous said...

Catoe has got to go. We need new leadership.

A-lo said...

My friend who works at Metro says Catoe has been wonderful in cleaning up a lot of the bureaucracy and inefficiencies behind the scenes at Metro. From how my friend has described it, Metro is an organization of powerful unions, outdated systems, and lethargic employees. A better solution might be to fire most of Metro and keep Catoe...

Anonymous said...

With Metro's operators/drivers current work ethnic (texting, cell phones, eating and constantly BSing with one another), just where are the supervisors in all this? Just when it is the passengers' responsibilty to post videos or constantly report instances of employees misconduct i.e., hassling/harassing the customers?

It is obvious the Director is scared to death of the "powerful union" and will not discipline employees, nor understand the extent of the widespread lethargy of Metrorail operators, and their laziness condoned by the Union Chief.

One solution is to fire the supervisors (especially on the Orange Line) -

Another possible answer, and I would like to hear other opinions on this thought, is to transfer all metrorail operators to track maintenance and automate the drivers, i.e., replace them with robots like they've done in Japan.

That would solve lots of problems - robots dont send personal texts nor make cell phone calls, don't eat, and have no problem with accoutability while on the job "24/7".

debmarst said...

Hey, have you guys been out and observed what's not happening in other places? metro is great, always could be better but Mr. Catoe is a breath of fresh air at Metro and we are lucky. he's honest and smart. rare combination.

Barbidiva said...

Being a Metro Employee myself I know how they operate and it isn't pretty. First off the GM is not the problem. The board is useless as they don't take complaints from employees about safety or other matters. Problem starts at middle management and rapidly falls apart. I've seen things that made me sick. Metro is one of those companies that waits till people die they then shift things around to make it seem like they are doing things.
Employees who maintain the stations are not properly supervised. If you point out safety problems YOU become the problem. If you point out lack of training YOU become the issue. If you point out a better faster way, you become a target for other employees and managers who prefer to keep things the way they are, regardless of SAFETY. Security is a joke as I have proven to a number of people but no one seemed to give a darn. The system is ripe for someone to do something awful and I'm afraid that until that takes place safety of the system will remain compromised. I know of a number of easy, and cheap to implement, safety programs. Having gas detectors in the stations is for show because it has to go off for them to detect it. Little help that that does.
As for communications! The people running the Com department don't have the credentials to do so and have spent millions on a system that was based on false data. Management knows the data was false but upper management doesn't, because they are lied to. It's a wonder they don't have 100 consultants to fix the problems! But the people who caused the problems have been promoted! Go figure. Underground communications remain not up to specs because the multi-million dollar system designed by Motorola was brilliant and impressive, but was designed to the exacting spec's given them by supervisors who knew the data was wrong. So now they are trying to fix it by getting a competent company to install a com system that they can piggyback on. Ask why? Well it's all about lack of supervision and lack of training, and promoting people who do not have the qualifications. Inspections by upper management do not exist so they don't catch it. Report things to the board and they don't want to respond to your letters. So most metro employees are afraid to speak up because metro crushes those that do like a bug. Safety is not the number one priority of the employees it's the pay, overtime, other jobs, or bible. I've read more reports on safety and seen so much first and second hand that it becomes obvious it's run for profit (of employees) not safe movement of people which is it's stated goal.

Anonymous said...

Hit or miss...We took visiting family members to DC via the Green line Branch avenue. The metro official there was patient and very helpful getting 8 suburbanites tickets. Return trip was just the opposite, big rude lazy person sitting in station masters booth barely answered our questions with 1 and 2 syllable grunts as her kid sat on the counter looking out of the booth. On another related issue the parking boot attendants should be flogged and quartered. Although a separate contractor,they are still ultra terrible.

Anonymous said...

DID u know that if there is an emergency in a Metro Station and u need to get out of the emergency exit tunnel and that door closes...

you cannot re-open it.

Also not all Metro employees have keys for the stations.(Not train operators)

Anonymous said...

You are correct. If an employee reports a safety breech then they become a target. Then the supervisors and some from other departments harass, demean, assign bad equiptment for u to fail or send u to employee relations, Eric Hebron's (AA) office. (the son of the first AA female train operator)

Anonymous said...

RCMT MGMT needs to go. There is no mgmt. One senior manager who is retired from another company is only there for a free check Metro is giving him. He does nothing. he could care less about the daily operations, the employees or the public.

Anonymous said...

I attempted to email the Washington State Transit Commission, but the twebster address gives me a delivery failure.

Hey, kinda like Metro!

I see what you did there ... very tricky.

michelle said...

yeah i just attempted the WASHINGTON SUBURBAN TRANSIT COMMISSION email also and it bounced... the webpage says that the people are appointed by the Gov of MD... so thats who is getting the email:

Post a Comment

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 Unported License.
Site Meter