Posted: 11:12 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 8, 2012
By Steve Visser
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
CUT, SAVE AND OUTSOURCE
A MARTA audit says the nation’s ninth-largest public transit system’s economic model is unsustainable and if spending continues at the current rate the system will have exhausted its savings by 2018. Below are a few of the audit’s recommendations to fix MARTA’s finances.
Privatize: The audit pointed to several functions where MARTA would save money by privatizing. Two examples are cleaning and payroll that would save the agency $60 million and $142 million over five years.
Cut labor costs: MARTA pays more than its peers for health care, workers compensation and absenteeism. The audit concluded MARTA pays $50 million more annually than its peers on employee benefits.
Inventory control: MARTA’s spending on needed supplies, such as rail and bus parts, could be lower, according to the audit.
Family: Widowed grandmother
Education: Doctorate in political science from Howard University
Occupation: Incoming General Manager of Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority in Boston
Professional Experience: Nationally recognized expert in public transit with 35 years experience; General Manager of MARTA since 2007; Prior experience includes: General Manager of Sacramento Regional Transit District; General Manager of Rhode Island Transit Authority; top executive positions at New Jersey Transit Corporation and New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Assistant professor of government and public affairs at Tennessee State University.
Coming Tuesday: New MARTA CEO, Keith Parker, will introduce himself to riders and talk to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on his first day on the job.