Buses Are Hot! Somebody Needs To Heat Up The Management at Annapolis DOT ~ Annapolis Capital Punishment

Friday, August 15, 2008

Buses Are Hot! Somebody Needs To Heat Up The Management at Annapolis DOT

CP has been writing about the unbearably hot buses of Annapolis Transit, which year after year, never seem to get their air conditioners fixed or working properly. Here is a copy of a letter CP sent to our local and state elected officials:

Dear Mayor, Aldermen and District 30 Delegation:

What will it take to get decent and considerate management to run our heavily subsidized transit system? I have spoken personally with many of you about the ongoing problems, mismanagement, low morale and lack of leadership and basic management at Annapolis DOT, something about which I am intimately familiar.

Today, The Capital ran the second story in two weeks about the ongoing air conditioning  problems on the buses. ALL drivers and ALL customers have  been painfully aware of this problem for years and years yet the transportation department seems unable or unwilling to fix the systems. I submit to you that this is just one of the most apparent examples of ongoing management and maintenance problems at the department which is all but ignored by the Moyer Administration.

It took pressure from state officials to bring in a new police chief, whose positive results are already apparent and are being recognized by taxpayers. What will it take at our bus system, which as I stated above, is heavily subsidized by state and federal funds?


Paul Foer

(NOTE---Annapolis Transit is also invested in by local taxpayers, but I emphasized the state support in this letters because our local lawmakers know this already and seem loathe to do much, probably because with our style of government, Alderman have little say in such matters. Therefore, I am hoping that the State may take more notice...and action.)

FOLLOWUP (The below comments have appeared in The Capital, send in by their readers):

''...if Danielle Matland would stop taking all these expensive vacations that she takes and using the money to buy new Sport utility vehicles for the supervisors to ride around in maybe they could purchase the type of buses that mta uses for their passengers, have you ever taken a ride on an mta bus, if you have you know you freeze in the summer time, and are warm in the winter."

"The joke with some riders is "If the stop bells don't work, how do you think the AC is going to work". I feel sorry for the drivers that need their jobs and have to put up these conditions and get in trouble when they try to remedy some of the heat problems. I think Ms. Matland and the supervisors need to get out of their air conditioned offices and ride the buses and get the opions (sic) from the riders to see how things really are. I also invite the mayor and anyone who is on the city payroll dealing with transit dollars to do the same.....The Annapolis Transit System is a disgrace to the capital of Maryland and something should be done about it instead of talked about. If this was a big corporate job, Ms. Matland with have that "Pink Slip" handed to her so fast for not pulling her weight, not getting the job done and for lying about the proformance (sic) of the product...."

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ellis said...

I'm just gonna play devils advocate here and say... maybe the city gov't wants to run the buses into the ground so that they can replace them with something more 'green/Earth friendly' like most of the university campus buses are statewide. Electric, Hydro, natural gas, whatever.

Maybe their attitude is "screw the buses, let em die. Time to get rid of deisel."

I have no idea though. just sayin.

Paul Foer said...

I don't think so, and for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is that newer diesels are relatively efficient and clean burning. We don't have the fueling infrastructure for CNG, but as for attitude of "screw the buses" it is really more like "screw the customer". As the article stated, the transportation director does not ride the buses, but she says she makes spot checks. Not in the nearly eight years I worked with her.

ellis said...

I agree with you that many have made great progress at creating diesel fuel engines which are more efficient and cleaner. German cars, such as Audi, have newer models that get great gas mileage.

Granted, we're talking about public transportation... not personal transportation.

In consideration of the long period of time public trans as been an issue, respectfully I can't foresee this issue coming to a close under Moyer's watch.

We've got about a dozen or more candidates running for mayor. I wonder what their plan is. This looks like an opportunity to get some of them on record.

Paul Foer said...

Ellis Right on. I have been and continue to work on this locally (just ask abut any local or District 30 lawmaker), but have you heard McCain or Obama mention it?

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