Saturday, January 5, 2013

Neil's bullshit

It’s a New Year!
I hope you all enjoyed the holidays – now 2013 is upon us. I came to the office this morning energized, and with a long list of ‘to dos.’  We’ll talk more about all of these (and more) during our upcoming budget process.
For a start, in no particular order:

  1. How do we make 2013 the year of safety? This would be for our operations, as well as our project staff. Keep up sending in ‘RSAs’ – Request for Safety Assessments – and focus on the training. (so far there is no improvement in safety statistics) I’m looking forward to new safety initiatives in this area.
  2. How do we integrate new technology? We have a new CAD/AVL system – we need to use all of its capabilities.(I hear the new system is a total boondoggle and works horribly) We will have ticket printers on board our buses mid-2013 -- we need to carefully integrate these devices. Then we need to advance to the e-fare system.
  3. How do we keep modernizing the bus fleet? We have 74 new buses being put into service this next year – we must continue to update our bus fleet.(plenty of 1400's still on the road)  Similarly, we need to focus on the progressive rehab of our older rail cars, and keep them all in top notch shape.  Both big budget issues.
  4. How do we balance the budget? We face increasing retiree and active employee health care costs – an uncertain status of the labor contract(just keep on lying about this, a lie told over and over eventually gets taken for the truth right) – and an uncertain economy that seems to want to fool us by a quick rev up and then sputter.
  5. How do we achieve long-term financial stability through a new partnership and contract with the ATU? The contract needs to be fair to employees, riders, and our taxpayers.(if you stop acting like a goddamn tyrant and showed some good will towards your employees/retirees maybe we could get some movement in the right direction here)
  6. How do we keep the Portland to Milwaukie project safe, under budget and on schedule? We are on time and under budget right now – and we need to keep it that way.(the biggest piece of useless pork we have going currently in PDX, not counting the CRC)
  7. How do we improve our focus on the customer? Most important is the reliability of the service we promise.(freaking hillarious) That takes true focus on the part of our Operations Division.
  8. How do we build sidewalks and bus stops? We need to capitalize on the region’s increased focus on sidewalks and other ‘active transportation links’ – and make sure our customers are the beneficiaries of that new investment.(whatever)
  9. How do we become more efficient? We need to look under every rock to find efficiencies and new and better ways.(ya right)
  10. How do we stay a triple A agency? Clean audits, clean FTA reviews, financial reviews, strong procurement and budgeting procedures – all important to enable our great service and work.(keep taking on debt, that we you can force a bankruptcy which is what you really want)
  11. How do we strengthen our ties to our diverse community, build trust with our riders, and our key stakeholders? This is key to our long-term success.(more BS)
  12. How do we keep our sanity, adjust to new surroundings (for many of us) and have a little fun along the way?(answer: treat people like they matter and not like peons who must follow orders blindly)

Well, I could go on – but I’ll spare you more. This list would be daunting but for the great TriMet team I have the chance to work with and have the honor to lead. I am grateful to you all for the work you do every day in support of our customers and safe service.
You should also know I’m grateful for the partners TriMet has in this community. I’m proud to report that one of them – Portland’s new mayor Charlie Hales – rode the #19 to his swearing in ceremony this morning!
Best for the New Year!

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