"...Capital Metro made a big hoo-hah about expanding service on New Year's Eve. Laudable, because the fewer drunk drivers, the better..."
"...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..."
"...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...."
"...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...."
"...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...."
"...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...."
"...2018 could be the year of a bigger, more rideable Capital Metro. Beginning Sunday, Jan..."
"...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...."
"...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..."
"...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...."
"...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...."
"...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..."
"...To say that the month of March went poorly for Capital Metro is putting it mildly...."
"...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...."
"..."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..."
"...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...."
"...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...."
"...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...."
"...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..."
"...Jay Wyatt is mad at Capital Metro again...."
"...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..."
"...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..."
"...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..."
"...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...."
"...Dear Editor, 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..."
"...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...."
"...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..."
"...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..."
"...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...."
"..."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."..."
"...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..."
"...Dear Editor, 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..."
"...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...."
"..."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..."
"...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...."
"...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...."
"...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..."
"...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..."
"...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...."
"...Howdy y'all 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..."
"...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...."
"..."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..."
"...Amidst a historic upsurge in public enthusiasm for taking transit, Capital Metro is ... ending its shuttle service to special events..."
"...No strike at Capital Metro...."
"...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...."
"...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..."
"...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."..."
"...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)..."
"...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...."
"...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...."