Prospects for reversal of CTA service cuts are not bright

Today is first work day when we'll really feel the brunt of the CTA service cuts that went into effect on Sunday. The CTA is duly warning that waits for buses and trains will be much longer, especially during non-rush hours.

And judging from what CTA union leaders are saying, the prospects of the unions agreeing to wage and other concessions to reverse the service cuts are quite dim.

"I can tell you that overwhelmingly in the past the membership has
said, 'Don't give up nothing,'" Robert Kelly, president of the CTA's rail union, told the Tribune Saturday. "I can tell you we don't
give up nothing without getting something. That's negotiating."

About 10 percent of bus and rail operators were laid off Sunday -- 1,100 out of 11,000 workers. Service has been reduced on 119 out of 150 bus routes, and on seven of eight rail lines. The shortest and least-traveled Yellow Line is the only rail line spared cuts. In addition, service spans were reduced on 41 bus routes, meaning they will have later start times or earlier end times, or both. Finally, nine express bus routes were eliminated.

Kelly did leave the door open for possible movement by CTA unions: "When I go back to my membership, the reality will have sunk in," Kelly told the Sun-Times. "It may change their minds;
it may not." The next meeting with union members is Tuesday.

CHICAGO TRIBUNE VIDEO

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  • This is why so many manufacturing jobs have left the city.
    Stupid union leadership that values its perks over what's good for the majority of its members.
    Now, 1100 union members are out of work, rather than all taking a small pay cut.
    What incredible selfishness!
    I've read of many companies where the employees voted to all take the pay cuts so that all could keep their jobs, but note that there hasn't been a vote of the entire union members, just its overpaid leaders who complain about overpaid CTA employees

    And Daley just keeps rolling along in his limo with 3 dozen police bodyguards assigned to him!

  • "I can tell you we don't give up nothing without getting something. That's negotiating."

    That's also poor grammar for someone in charge of the union...

  • In reply to chris:

    The lack of grammar doesn't bother me so much as the lack of logic. The unions did give up something (didn't not give up nothing)? They gave up over 1,000 member jobs. That's something, and for what?

    38 mechanics settled today to save their jobs. Bus and rail operators may now feel pressure to negotiate. Lest anyone desire to brand me anti-union, know that I am a 10-year member of the Chicago Teachers Union, albeit reluctantly. They take the money out of my paycheck regardless of my membership, so I figured I'd better take advantage of the "benefits." I don't see any. Just sacrificing newer members' for older members' job security. Seems to be the same thing with the transit unions.

  • In reply to marthat3:

    Well, I guess the remaining members got job security... :)

  • The LSD express buses are still running, and still quite often. Sounds like you wanted to ditch the bus anyway, and this was an excuse.

  • How's this for irony, cta management passing out pamphlets at certain terminals, another waste, but as long as cta doesn't cancel that essential winter service, the holiday train.

  • In reply to ibilldavis:

    That was not irony. How else was the CTA supposed to communicate the specifics of the service cuts? Not everyone has the ability to look it up online.

  • In reply to ruinor:

    posters

  • In reply to ibilldavis:

    I didn't have any problem getting here this morning. I left at my usual time. The train didn't seem particularly packed. I don't travel during the height of rush hour though, so maybe that's a factor.

  • In reply to ibilldavis:

    Can you read? The Holiday Train doesn't cost that much to run. We already covered this for you in previous threads. Canceling the holiday train doesn't not avert 1100 job cuts! You keep bringing up cost savings measures that make no sense, like getting rid of posters and the announcement of cuts on the bus intercom.

  • In reply to chris:

    the principle.

  • In reply to ibilldavis:

    Cut out all the symbolism and principle and you still have the same set of circumstances we have today of service being cut. So your points are worthless if they don't solve the problem. Why not propose something that is actually helpful.

  • In reply to chris:

    It's called symbolism!
    The holiday train is indicative of waste, even if it doesn't cost that much.
    And I'm one of those that doesn't believe the CTA on that, I'll bet it does cost way more than they claim & that the costs are hidden in some obscure part of the budget!

  • In reply to chris:

    Wow. I know it's Monday morning, but can the discourse on here be a bit friendlier?

  • In reply to chris:

    LET'S TALK SERIOUSLY. THE CTA HAS 8 MANAGERS WATCHING OVER 16 TO 20 EMPLOYEES! DO THE MATH FOLKS !!!!!!!!!! EACH MANAGER'S STARTING PAY IS 74,500. AND MOST OF THEM HAVE BEEN THERE FOR MANY YEARS, WHICH MEANS THERE MAKING SIX, YES I SAID SIX FIGURE SALARIES. DO THEY REALLY NEED HAVE ALL THOSE MANAGERS? NOW LET'S LOOK AT THE PRESIDENT OF CTA I WAS INFORMED HE JUST RECEIVED A 60,000 PAY RAISE. DIDN'T HE STEP DOWN FROM THIS POSITION? WHY DOESN'T SOMEONE PULL THE SALARY LIST FROM THE TOP DOWN. NOW LET'S SEE WHAT CUTS CAN BE MADE!!!!!!!!!

  • In reply to sg1016:

    Hmmm... You start off your statement saying "LET'S TALK SERIOUSLY."

    You know when you type like that you're yelling, right?

    Also, you can't just fire all the people making the most money. That doesn't solve anything. Some people justifiably make more money than others.

  • In reply to sg1016:

    My solution, and the fairest way to do it, fire the last 1200 people cta hired, no matter the job, union, non-union, management or otherwise. I don't care if it's a freind or foe, or a realitive, last 1200 hired, first fired, even if it includes Rodriguez, and Peterson.

  • In reply to ibilldavis:

    Please explain how this is fair to someone who recently got hired and is doing a good job. They should eliminate the people who had the poorest marks on their evaluations regardless of tenure. Also, your plan doesn't make sense because it might eliminate positions that are needed. Even if you don't like him, you still need a CTA president.

  • In reply to ibilldavis:

    While the Powers That Be want to blame "the Unions" and "reduced tax revenue income" for the CTA funding crisis, reductions in service, and huge lay-offs; among other things there are $200+ million wasted dollars buried under Block 37.

    And the Unions and the public have, and have had NO input in planning, capital investments, or service decisions; yet they have to bear the consequences of years of spending on things that weren't requested (or needed) by riders.

    Also repeatedly appointing people (nothing against them) with NO
    transit experience whatsoever to head the CTA; 747 Pilots and Brain
    Surgeons are obviously very intelligent people, but they cannot do
    each others jobs.

  • In reply to mikep621:

    It's important to note that there is a difference between operating funds and capital expense funds. And while the CTA certainly routinely moves some dollars earmarked for capital spending to the operating side, they can't always do that with all funds.

  • In reply to KevinO’Neil:

    I may be wrong, but I thought the "Airport SuperStation" at Block 37 was constructed not with CTA capital funds, but with some City of Chicago discretionary funds (which could have been - or could be now - used with the same discretion to save CTA jobs and service). BTW: Are there still any city funds left from leasing the Skyway or Parking meters? (Oh yeah, I forgot; Da'Mayors saving that for a "rainy day").

  • In reply to mikep621:

    As Kevin said, the $200 million for Block 37 have very little bearing on the issue of this operating deficit.

    The public do have input in planning. They just recently had a vision study for the Red and Purple Line North Main Line. They did this for all the other projects in planning in the past as well. The public comments are available for viewing on transitchicago.com

  • In reply to chris:

    CTA comes into the "Alternative Analysis" meetings with CTA's "alternative" already decided; then after diverse "public input" available for viewing, somehow the "alternative" CTA wanted in the first place always comes out on top.

  • In reply to mikep621:

    You may or may not be correct, but they do gather input which is what you said they don't do. I didn't state that they listen to it, but I feel that they do take some input regarding parts of the project.

  • In reply to mikep621:

    So how was everyone's weekend at the Teabagger's Convention in nashville....since it sounds like there is all kinds of teabagging going on in thie thread, I'm going to assume you got me a sarah palin autograph?!?!

  • In reply to RyanJustice:

    Apple, meet orange....

  • In reply to mikep621:

    Wow, the few comments on here about commutes sound pretty good. Is there a bad comment about how this actually affected anyone's travel? Either these actual cuts were thought through well, or the people affected have been waiting so long they've not made it to even be able to leave a bad comment.

  • In reply to JohnT:

    Yes, people with internet access who commute to 9-5 professional jobs downtown from the north side have not been horribly affected by this. Most of the people who are probably don't have the luxury of commenting here.

  • In reply to mikely:

    Mike, I absolutely agree with you. I think folks riding off-peak hours are seeing much longer waits, but have no proof of that because I'm at work during those times!

  • In reply to mikep621:

    New Flyers are now running on the 49. Odd to see those North Park run numbers. The commute did take about 3.5 minutes longer, as predicted by the Red Eye. As I had assumed prior to the cuts, the local doesn't make as many stops because every bus is a local, so the likelihood of as many people waiting at each local stop is less than prior to the cuts, when expresses outnumbered locals. I think I'm going to be ok. :)

  • In reply to marthat3:

    I'm trying to head back to Chicago to experience Doomsday. I'm experiencing my own right now since my flight from Logan was canceled due to the snow.

    I don't know how Irving Park will handle the loss of the X. I know that when the X isn't (correction, wasn't) running past the Blue Line on weekends, the locals were fully seated, even though they ran every 10 minutes coming from Cumberland. So I am using that logic BEFORE the cuts and guessing that its going to suck without the X :

    But I still love your logic Martha, thank you for being rational.

  • In reply to ibright05:

    I was concerened about the Irving 80 as well, but I'll be O.K. for my next 80/Blue line trip to O'Hare at the end of February, especially since there is some added service on 80 between the Blue Line and LSD.

    Here's the schedule if you're interested:
    http://www.transitchicago.com/assets/1/bus_schedules/80.pdf

  • In reply to JohnT:

    *Disclaimer* I'm up for a very early flight and not stalking fellow tattlers.

    I know the 80 schedule and honestly, before 8PM its just a suggestion. That traffic patterns on Irving Park (44,000 vehicles per day roughly between Kimball and the Kennedy...http://www.gettingaroundillinois.com/default.aspx?ql=aadt) are so unpredictable that the buses, even with a 5 minute headway are going to bunch beyond belief. The local was so reliable this past year because the X absorbed most of the ridership and was way more frequent during its service.

  • In reply to ibright05:

    I yield to your direct knowledge on the impact of losing the X80. I'm only an occasional non-rush hour user of 80(X80). Although I was raised there, it was years ago and WAY back then, the previous iteration(I suppose it's now two previous iterations) of the express buses had a great positive impact for travel movement. Sorry for the loss.

  • In reply to JohnT:

    Haha thanks. I am not a daily 80 commuter, I see them often while walking to the L and the gym and when I have to do things on Irving Park (which is usually a few times a week). While the loss of the X is pretty bad, I find the midday service reductions to be worse for other routes in the system. While I can't criticize because there's no money and understand the need to put out the service levels that matches the ridership, it still hurts. Some routes were impacted more severely than others but it is time that the CTA did reduce the frequency on some of those lighter routes. I went through the *entire* list of timetables that were posted and not everything was horrible. Some of them I even liked.

  • In reply to marthat3:

    Good luck getting home! I wonder if the 80 non-X experience will mirror the 49.

    All this capacity and headway discussion makes me think it's time to plan another Tattler TOD experience with a nod to the service cuts. We'll have to pace our drink orders to the new schedules (every half hour vs. every 20 minutes), consume 18% less, and end earlier.

  • In reply to marthat3:

    Thanks! And I'm nodding with enthusiasm about the prospect of another Tattler TOD... wait, is that a good thing?

    I bit the bullet and am getting on a 655am ET flight from Logan. It'll probably be one of the few United flights into O'Hare since my 130 flight was already canceled yesterday afternoon.

  • In reply to marthat3:

    Same shit, different year. I honestly don't care, and haven't for a years now. No matter what happens I still have to walk to the L, I still have to wait for a train, and I still have pack into the train. Unless train service is halted completely, and let's be honest, this is entirely implausible, I'm still taking the train to work.

    Every year it's the same arguments, the same complaints, the same "crisis"...nothing changes, ever. Change the damn record, or move to Phoenix.

  • In reply to sg1016:

    Prove it. And get rid of the caps locks. It makes you look like a slack jawed yokel.

  • In reply to sg1016:

    Time to bulldoze the Archer garage!

  • In reply to ibilldavis:

    Not management. Forced "volunteers"

  • Poor baby. Oh, the humanity. Your wife's express bus was not reduced. People like you are the reason there needs to be a buses-only lane on LSD or HOV restrictions during rush hour. You live in one of the most transit-rich areas of the city and you just added another car to the mix. Clap clap.

  • In reply to mikely:

    Let me know what time the 147 bus isn't reduced, mike, so I can catch that. When I'm usually taking it, it was strikingly reduced.

    That said, I noticed that while Rodriguez had originally hoped for some $30 million of absurd concessions from the unions, he now wants them to shoulder the entire $95 million. In a few short days, he's become a bloody nutcase.

  • You're the bad guy because you're going on a transit board and saying that your wife is no longer using transit.

  • Well, Chicago Trib put the announcement of this on Sunday deep in the first section, and a very short article at that. Surprising...

  • Yes, MK, but you're the same guy who has consistently said the 36 and 22 are redundant. So your opinions aren't taken seriously here.

  • What is the money from the Skyway and the Parking meters for?

  • In reply to mikep621:

    Filling other city budget holes, but certainly not the CTA's!

  • In reply to KevinO’Neil:

    Why not the CTA?

  • Notice that NYC has a huge budget hole and is cutting lines? Washington? Ha...they've got budget problems and seem to be killing a lot of people lately.

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