Here are some CTA news items from last week.
World's largest garage sale? The CTA will auction off about $32 million in surplus, unused supplies. Unfortunately, the auction shows the CTA has badly managed its assets over the last few years. But at least the agency admits it and is doing something to reverse course. Among the examples President Forrest Claypool highlighted were a large supply of window films designed to protect vandalism of rail car windows, according to a press release. The CTA ordered them over three years ago, and currently has a stock of 1,500 pieces worth over $100,000. At current use rates, the supply will last another 25 years. Claypool promised "more stringent reviews of large or non-routine orders, and steps to implement an electronic bar-coding system to better track items. CTA will also seek qualified companies that can provide market expertise and industry best practices related to supply-chain functions."
Cop dies on CTA patrol: Chicago Police Officer Preston Ross suffered an apparent heart attack while patrolling the CTA Blue Line station at Grand Avenue Saturday morning. He was pronounced dead later that morning. Our condolences to his family. And we thank you for your service.
Woman raped on Red Line. A Chicago woman was raped and robbed early Friday morning while riding on a southbound Red Line train between Roosevelt Road and 79th Street. The attacker was described as a black man between the ages of 20 and 25. He had a slim build, dark complexion and no facial hair. He was wearing a black hooded jacket and all black clothing, and was armed with a black-handled knife with a long blade, police said.