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Cap Metro Drops Ball as Ball Drops
Detours with no notice leaves New Year's Eve revelers stranded
DAILY News January 1, 2009, by Richard Whittaker
"...Capital Metro made a big hoo-hah about expanding service on New Year's Eve. Laudable, because the fewer drunk drivers, the better..."
Cap Metro Wants Feedback on January Changes
First meeting Thursday night in Leander
DAILY News August 25, 2010, by Lee Nichols
"...Capital Metro makes service changes every six months, and it wants public feedback now on its proposed January changes. As detailed in tomorrow's edition, Cap Metro planners are considering eliminating the 984 and 986 express buses, which has some Leanderites upset..."
Jay Wyatt Fired by Cap Metro
Cap Metro claims "sexual harassment"; Union president charges "retaliation"
DAILY News September 11, 2009, by Michael King
"...Late Friday afternoon, Sept. 11, Capital Metro notified ATU Local 1091 President Jay Wyatt that he is being fired for "sexual harassment." It's not as simple as that – nothing at Cap Metro ever is...."
Cap Metro Workers On Strike
Photos from this morning's picket line
DAILY News November 5, 2008, by Lee Nichols
"...While other Democrats were downstairs partying in celebration of Barack Obama's presidential win Tuesday night, City Council Member Mike Martinez was ensconced in a fifth-floor room of the Driskill Hotel working the phone, desperately trying to avert a strike by Capital Metro's workers...."
Housecleaning at Cap Metro
CFO and Engineering VP resign
DAILY News October 15, 2010, by Lee Nichols
"...Chief financial officer Randy Hume and Vice President of Engineering and Construction John Almond have resigned from Capital Metro at the request of new President/CEO Linda Watson. The resignations aren't too surprising, considering financial problems that occurred partly on Hume's watch and rail construction delays under Almond...."
A Lone Voice Against Cap Metro Reform Bill
Austin resident – get this – actually rides the bus!
DAILY News May 5, 2009, by Lee Nichols
"...I don’t really expect Austin Sen. Kirk Watson’s SB 2015 – which would re-shape Capital Metro’s board of directors and give the organization greater flexibility in extending and operating rail services – to encounter too much trouble working its way through the Lege, but it did draw an opponent at this morning’s House Transportation Committee meeting...."
Cap Metro Ramps Up Commuter Service
More trips for public transit riders
DAILY News January 2, 2018, by Sarah Marloff
"...2018 could be the year of a bigger, more rideable Capital Metro. Beginning Sunday, Jan..."
UPDATED: Cap Metro Workers to Begin Strike Wednesday
Council Member Martinez offers stopgap compromise proposal
DAILY News October 31, 2008, by Lee Nichols
"...Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1091, representing Capital Metro's drivers and maintenance workers, announced this morning that its members will go on strike beginning Wednesday, Nov. 5, after failing to come to a contract agreement with StarTran, the contractor that actually employs them...."
Walker Steps Down as Cap Metro Board Chair
After 11 years, says time for "someone else" to take on "exciting challenges"
DAILY News March 31, 2008, by Lee Nichols
"...Press release from Capital Metro:Lee Walker Announces Retirement from Capital Metro Board of DirectorsMarch 31, 2008
Austin, Texas – Today Capital Metro Board Chairman Lee Walker announced his retirement effective May 31.
Walker was appointed to the board by the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (CAMPO) in 1997. Chairman Walker submitted the following letter to Sen..."
Cap Metro Service Changes in Effect Today
South Austin, UT shuttle, and Night Owl routes see changes
DAILY News August 19, 2012, by Monica Riese
"...In its latest round of service upgrades and updates, Capital Metro has unrolled changes on several South Austin, Night Owl, and University of Texas shuttle routes. The transit authority endeavors to adjust its schedule three times a year in accordance with riders' needs...."
Cap Metro Quits Congress
Buses re-routing to Guadalupe-Lavaca corridor
DAILY News June 3, 2014, by Richard Whittaker
"...If you're waiting for the bus on Congress Avenue, get ready for a walk. As of today, Capitol Metro is moving the bulk of its routes from Congress west to the Guadalupe-Lavaca corridor...."
Cap Metro Testing Out Rail Cars
Service begins 2008
DAILY News December 18, 2007, by Lee Nichols
"...PRESS RELEASE from Cap Metro:
Capital MetroRail is on the Move
On Track Testing Begins Tonight
Austin, Texas, December 17, 2007 – Today marks a major milestone in Capital Metro’s Urban Commuter Rail project. The first MetroRail vehicle will be tested on a portion of the Authority’s tracks beginning tonight.
Preliminary testing will take place sporadically from approximately 8:00 p.m..."
What's Wrong With Cap Metro ... and What's Right
The transit agency is good at a few things – like digging itself into a public relations ditch
News Story April 24, 2009, by Lee Nichols
"...To say that the month of March went poorly for Capital Metro is putting it mildly...."
Funding Questions Follow Cap Metro's Court Win
Court victory creates more tension between labor and transit agency
News Story July 2, 2010, by Lee Nichols
"...As if the relationship between Capital Metro and its unionized workers weren't already strange enough, a June 8 court victory for the transit agency made it a little weirder. And even though it's a legal win, it's raised the question of whether Cap Metro's federal funding could be jeopardized...."
Railroaded? Cap Metro vs. Veolia
Cap Metro fires its rail contractor, and Veolia strikes back
News Story December 18, 2009, by Lee Nichols
"...Depending who you ask, Capital Metro either took swift, decisive action to protect the public's investment or stabbed a loyal contractor in the back. Either way, Veolia Transportation is no longer charged with completing the much-delayed Leander-to-Downtown MetroRail commuter line...."
The Bus Stops Here: Cap Metro
One-day strike ratchets up tensions between transit agency and union
News Story September 30, 2005, by Wells Dunbar
"..."We were able to show Capital Metro we'll set it, we'll call it, and there's nothing they can do about it," said Bob Johnson, vice-president of Amalgamated Transit Union 1091, as he stood outside the transportation authority's administrative offices last Thursday, dragging on an ever-present cigarette. Over a hundred rowdy union members stood farther down the block, urging drivers to honk their horns in support and jeering buses passing in and out of the lot..."
Lege Speaks, Cap Metro Listens: Screw the Union
Lege mandates busting union contracts at Cap Metro
News Story June 3, 2011, by Lee Nichols
"...The state Sunset Advisory Commission recommended it last year, and now the Legislature has mandated it: Capital Metro must change its current, convoluted labor situation and reduce labor costs. Senate Bill 650, codifying these and other reforms for the agency, laid out two possible solutions: Either contract out all rank-and-file labor via competitive bidding, or bring all bus drivers and mechanics into the direct employ of Cap Metro...."
Cap Metro Contracting: Watson and Wyatt at Odds
Transit agency and labor union still renegotiating
News Story April 20, 2012, by Josh Rosenblatt
"...It's been two long, dark years since the Sunset Advisory Commission issued its now-infamous report taking Capital Metro to task for mismanaging its finances, failing to keep down costs, and rushing into commuter rail without sufficient planning. But tomorrow may just find the transit agency dragging itself back into the light...."
Cap Metro to Pay Up by 2019
Council to vote on new agreement regarding Quarter Cent program funds
News Story April 23, 2010, by Lee Nichols
"...It appears that the city of Austin and Capital Metro have tentatively reached an agreement on how Cap Metro will pay off the $51 million it owes the city as part of its Quarter Cent program. Last Thursday, April 15, the Capital Metro board reviewed a proposed amendment to the interlocal agreement between the two entities and authorized the transit agency's management to finalize the deal..."
Union Bristles at Cap Metro Shuffle
Are the wheels coming off the bus?
News Story February 27, 2009, by Lee Nichols
"...Jay Wyatt is mad at Capital Metro again...."
Cap Metro Hangs Hopes on “Connections 2025”
High frequency bus lines attempt to increase commuter freedom
News Story November 2, 2017, by Jack Craver
"...She'd just missed the 7 when she got to the Downtown stop. Luckily, that's one of the Capital Metro Transit Authority's six "frequent" routes, so she'd only have to wait 15 minutes..."
Cap Metro: The Quarter Cent Shuffle
Why Cap Metro takes a quarter-cent and then gives it back
News Story April 16, 2010, by Katherine Gregor
"...rail politics. In 2000, when light rail lost narrowly at the polls, the Capital Metro board was under mounting road-warrior and legislative pressure to return the quarter-cent in sales tax it had been setting aside for the light rail project..."
Cap Metro Courting Prospective Partners
Transit authority could extend rail and bus service well beyond Austin
News Story July 4, 2008, by Katherine Gregor
"...So did the broader initiative for a transit system linking the entire Central Texas region. Capital Metro's board approved a new Service Expansion Policy that paves the way for actively inviting surrounding communities to become contractual partners in new or expanded transit services..."
Union Charges Cap Metro Subcontract Conflicts
Was cronyism involved in picking those new subcontractors?
News Story May 11, 2012, by Josh Rosenblatt
"...Anyone who thought that the Cap Metro board's late April approval of two contracts for fixed-route and paratransit bus service would bring a long-awaited end to the whole Sunset Commission Review soap opera probably hasn't been paying much attention the last five years. For the bus drivers over at Amalgamated Transit Union 1091, the investigation has just begun into why Cap Metro picked McDonald Transit Associates and MV Transportation to run its fixed-route and MetroAccess bus services (respectively), to the tune of $520 million...."
Cap Metro Frustrating Its Regular Riders
Postmarks March 20, 2012
Re: "Cap Metro Adopts High Tech Timetables" [News, March 16]: Cap Metro's replacing its schedules with two-foot tutorials on QR codes shows you how out of touch it is. Their consumers aren’t South by Southwest badge holders experimenting with tech panels and gadgets..."
Cap Metro Promises To Be Good
Transit agency formally responds to Sunset findings
News Story May 14, 2010, by Lee Nichols
"...Capital Metro released a formal reply last week to the Texas Sunset Advisory Commission's staff review of the transit agency. The response was straightforward – the agency agreed with all of the report's recommendations and even said it had anticipated some of the criticisms and was already working on implementing some of the proposed solutions...."
Watson Surveys Stakeholders on Cap Metro Reforms
Now is the time to act, senator says
News Story February 27, 2009, by Lee Nichols
"...In 2007, Capital Metro underwent a peer review ordered by the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization, the agency responsible for transportation planning in the Austin area, measuring it against nine comparable transit authorities around the nation. The results were published in November 2008, and now Austin state senator and CAMPO Chair Kirk Watson says it's time to act..."
Tracking Cap Metro's Eastward Proposal
The Green Line takes conceptual shape
News Story September 12, 2008, by Katherine Gregor
"...Is passenger rail for the East Austin growth corridor a wise regional transportation investment? For the first time, the just-released Capital Metro report "Austin-Manor-Elgin Corridor: A Preliminary Review" provides the hard data – or at least good estimates – to make that call. In sum, the report makes the case for expanding the region's commuter rail system by adding a second, eastward Green Line to complement the westerly Red Line – although its feasibility depends on whether the tracks can become lined with dense new transit villages developed around passenger stations...."
Point Austin: Memo to Cap Metro
Stop Union-busting, or Take a Hike
News Column December 16, 2005, by Michael King
"...You gotta hand it to the folks at Capital Metro. Each time they slowly and painfully crawl out of the muck of their latest public-relations disaster, they manage to find a way to roll back down the hill again..."
No Breakthrough at Cap Metro
Union disputes notion that a deal has almost been reached
News Story December 16, 2005, by Wells Dunbar
"..."What's disgusting?" rose the cry from about 80 protesters assembled in front of Capital Metro's Eastside headquarters last Saturday, their self-reflexive chant answering their own question: "Union busting!" Several labor groups, representing not only Austinites but workers across the state and country, assembled to celebrate International Human Rights Day and to call attention to the importance of workers' rights. But as Education Austin president Louis Malfaro declared, "It's no coincidence we're at Capital Metro."..."
Cap Metro: A Couple Years of Labor Peace?
McDonald Transit and Amalgamated Transit Union reach an agreement
News Story March 22, 2013, by Michael King
"...On March 6, Capital Metro and McDonald Transit announced a contract agreement between major subcontractor McDonald and Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1091, the drivers and mechanics union. The new contract, effective through September of 2015, includes an immediate 2.1% wage hike (effective Feb..."
'Serious Misinformation' in Cap Metro Article
Postmarks April 8, 2009
Lee Nichols, on the whole, you're a very competent reporter, but I think you've dropped the ball in this case – your article contains some serious misinformation [“Cap Metro,” News, March 27].
1) You note that Cap Metro is bringing in consultants from Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority – the major Boston-region public transit authority (equivalent to Cap Metro) – but then tell us that "MBTA is run by Veolia." Of course, this is nonsense. Veolia is a partner in a consortium that operates some of MBTA's transit services; the consultants assisting Cap Metro are direct employees of MBTA.
2) Much more serious is your reiteration of Ben Wear's fairy tale in the Austin American-Statesman that Cap Metro "has drained its cash reserves to build its nonfunctional train and other pricey projects and apparently can't pay it back." OK, yes, the train (as a transit service) – as you report elsewhere – is indeed "nonfunctional" at the moment, but the claim about draining reserves "owed" to the city of Austin and other communities is pure mythology concocted by Wear and promulgated by the Statesman..."
Cap Metro Farms Out Four Bus Routes
In a cost-cutting move, Capital Metro switches four of its bus routes to cheaper contractors
News Story December 12, 2008, by Lee Nichols
"...During a three-day strike by many of its drivers last month, Capital Metro faced numerous accusations from Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1091 that it was engaging in union-busting. As it turns out, Cap Metro was putting fuel on that fire even while the strike was ongoing...."
Cap Metro: The Fewer the Merrier
Budget cuts target Cap Metro's most vulnerable riders
News Story September 17, 2010, by Lee Nichols
"..."Our fiscal year 2011 draft budget increases MetroBus and MetroRail service, increases our financial reserves and improves bus stop accessibility," writes Linda Watson, Capital Metro's brand-new president and CEO, in the preface to the proposed fiscal year 2011 budget. That sounds pretty good, but of course, the devil is always in the details..."
Access Denied: Cap Metro Blocks Blind Contender
Transit agency's Access Committee cries foul over board decision
News Story October 24, 2008, by Justin Ward
"...In the latest chapter of an ongoing feud over proposed changes to Capital Metro's services for the disabled, some members of the agency's Access Committee are crying foul over a decision by Cap Metro management to block an applicant seeking to fill a seat on the committee. The committee, which is composed mostly of transit users with disabilities, was created under the Americans With Disabilities Act as a mechanism to provide feedback and enforce compliance...."
Cap Metro: Riding the Shuffle Bus
Downtown bus routes shift
News Story June 19, 2014, by Richard Whittaker
"...Something's missing. For the first time in decades, Capital Metro has taken all its buses off the city's major Downtown thoroughfare, and switched them over to Guadalupe and Lavaca streets...."
State Report Slams Cap Metro
Transit agency in a crisis, Sunset Advisory Commission says
News Story April 30, 2010, by Michael King
"...As if Capital Metro didn't already have enough egg on its face, last week marked the release of the state Sunset Advisory Commission staff report on the agency – and the contents were not flattering. The opening paragraph captures both the report's grim conclusions and its scathing tone: "Capital Metro faces a crisis that could threaten its ability to maintain current services unless the Board takes immediate action to shore up the Authority's finances..."
Doesn't Trust Cap Metro
Postmarks June 11, 2004
Scene: the Austin Convention Center on Thursday, June 10, at 8am to 12pm. Many of the Cap Metro workshop tables sat understandably empty, retail-tax-paying Austinites were at their jobs..."
Cap Metro Changes: 'Lipstick on a Pig'
Activists for people with disabilities trying to thwart transit plans
News Story December 17, 2010, by Lee Nichols
"...Activists for people with disabilities are still trying to put the brakes on already-approved plans for changes to Capital Metro's paratransit service (van and car rides for those who cannot use regular bus service). Although the board has given the thumbs-up to what the agency calls "difficult decisions," Cap Metro still must update its Americans With Disabilities Act plan with the Federal Transit Administration..."
Limited Access: Cap Metro Gets Tough on Paratransit
Cap Metro changes could leave disabled customers without a ride
News Story October 1, 2010, by Lee Nichols
"...Capital Metro's fiscal year 2011 budget covers a lot of ground, including financial reserves, employee raises, and increases in fares and rail service. But one issue dominated discussion at last Friday's board of directors meeting: changes to MetroAccess, the transit agency's paratransit service...."
Cap Metro Survey Shows Drop in Satisfaction
Express and UT shuttles make for happier customers
News Story August 6, 2010, by Lee Nichols
"...Capital Metro has been desperate for good news of late. Last week, it seemed to have found some – but unfortunately, dark clouds can be spotted even in a sunny sky...."
Watson to Take Cap Metro Wheel
Public sector experience clinched the deal for transit board
News Story June 25, 2010, by Lee Nichols
"..."This is arguably the most critical decision we'll make as a board, regardless of how long we're here, and I couldn't be more happy with Linda Watson, the candidate we've chosen." So said Austin Mayor Pro Tem Mike Martinez, chair of the Capital Metro board of directors, after the board voted 7-0 to hire the current CEO of Orlando's LYNX transit system to fill the same position here. "Ms..."
Cap Metro Cancels Shuttle Services
Transit agency bows to new federal rule on shuttles
News Story July 25, 2008, by Katherine Gregor
"...Amidst a historic upsurge in public enthusiasm for taking transit, Capital Metro is ... ending its shuttle service to special events..."
Cap Metro Dodges Strike
Union, management credit Mayor Wynn with success
News Story February 3, 2006, by Wells Dunbar
"...No strike at Capital Metro...."
Labor Woes at Cap Metro
Capital Metro service hangs in the balance at 11-hour union negotiations
News Story August 5, 2005, by Wells Dunbar
"...Capital Metro and its largest contractor, StarTran, are in negotiations with the men and women of Amalgamated Transit Union 1091, with tomorrow, Friday, Aug. 5, looming as the start date for a possible strike unless an agreement is reached...."
Cap Metro CEO Candidates on Accessibility, Finances
Forum brings out candidates' views on agency's biggest challenges
News Story May 21, 2010, by Lee Nichols
"...The two finalists for the CEO/president job at Capital Metro came to town Monday and got a taste of the full-contact sport we know as local politics. "Austin is the poster child for public engagement," said one candidate, Deborah Wathen Finn, to knowing laughter from the 100 or so gathered at IBC Bank's conference room in East Austin..."
More Cap Metro Union, Contractor Gridlock
Strike a real possibility
News Story November 11, 2005, by Wells Dunbar
"...The latest round of contract negotiations between Capital Metro's largest union, Amalgamated Transit Union 1091, and StarTran, Cap Metro's largest contractor, stalled out yet again Friday in the boardrooms of the Radisson Hotel. Local 1091 was joined at its table by its National Vice-President Ronald Heintzman, local labor leader Louis Malfaro, and Pastor Karl Gronberg from the Religion and Labor Coalition, there to ensure "operators at Capital Metro are compensated fairly."..."
Nonprofits Not Impressed by Cap Metro Proposal
Cap Metro draws fire over proposal to start a nonprofit for low-income riders
News Story November 6, 2009, by Lee Nichols
"...Two weeks ago, we outlined a proposal being floated by Capital Metro for the creation of a nonprofit charity to address the needs of Central Texans who have no choice but to use mass transit ("Helping the 'Transit-Dependent,'" Oct. 23)..."
Cap Metro Shifts Routes, Riles Drivers
Transit agency says budget crunch prompted changes
News Story July 10, 2009, by Lee Nichols
"...Capital Metro has made another cost-cutting move in response to its current budget crunch – one that will certainly fuel more charges of union-busting from its workers...."
Cap Metro Disability-Service Cuts on Hold
The Texas Civil Rights Project has been given more time to fight Cap Metro's changes to services for the disabled
News Story July 4, 2008, by Justin Ward
"...TCRP argued that without subscription taxi rides – vouchers for regular trips such as work, doctor appointments, and dialysis – Cap Metro's Special Transit Services aren't efficient and flexible enough to meet the comparability requirements of the Americans With Disabilities Act. The ADA requires that a federally funded transit agency provide services for people with disabilities that are parallel to the fixed-route service in terms of wait times and service area...."