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October 25, 2010

4:00 p.m.


Conference Room 241, 243 S. Allen Street

State College, PA  16801



BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT:                      John Spychalski, Chairman

                                                                        Joe Davidson, Vice-Chairman

                                                                        Richard Kipp, Treasurer

                                                                        Gary Powers

                                                                        Kathryn Bittner


STAFF:                                                            Hugh Mose, General Manager

                                                                        Louwana Oliva, Assistant General Manager

                                                                        Judith Minor, Director of Administration

                                                                        Kimberly Fragola, Assistant Director of Administration

                                                                        Eric Bernier, Service Development Manager

                                                                        Jackie Sheader, Marketing Manager

                                                                        Julie Hartley, Human Resources Manager

                                                                        Greg Kausch, Transportation Planner

                                                                        Marsha Kyper, Assistant to the General Manager


OTHERS:                                                         Tamboura Colbert, Operations Supervisor

                                                                        Austin Novstrup, Operations Supervisor



I.          CALL TO ORDER

Chairman Spychalski called the meeting to order at 4:01 p.m.



Jackie Sheader introduced Trent Clark, Employment Training Specialist for Skills of Central Pennsylvania, and Lori Lange, who works for Skills in Public Relations and Marketing, who were in attendance to present CATA with the 2010 Pennsylvania Association of Rehabilitation Facilities (PARF) Award, which is given annually to an organization that provides services to community members with disabilities.  CATA was chosen from among 52 nominees to receive the award for its administration of accessible and affordable transportation which many Skills clients require to get to their jobs.


Mr. Clark spoke about CATA’s contribution to the transportation needs of Skills clients and then presented the PARF award plaque to Hugh Mose and Chairman Spychalski.



Louwana Oliva introduced to the Board, Tamboura Colbert and Austin Novstrup, who were recently promoted from the Driver ranks to the position of Operations Supervisor.  




There were no public comments.



A.        Approval of Minutes of September 27, 2010 Board Meeting

Chairman Spychalski entertained a motion to approve the September 27, 2010 Board Meeting minutes with the following corrections: 

·         Old Business, Section B: change the lower case l in “line of Credit” to upper case.

·         New Business, Section A, first paragraph: change the semi-colon after CATA to a comma; add a comma before the word “ and; second paragraph add the words “route mileage” after specific route’s; substitute the word “however” for “but that”; substitute “fall below that threshold” for “should not qualify.” 


Kathryn Bittner moved and Gary Powers seconded.  The motion carried unanimously.


B.        Approval of Minutes of October 15, 2010 Board Work Session

Chairman Spychalski entertained a motion to approve the minutes of the October 15, 2010 Board Work Session as presented, with the following correction:

Discussion Items 1. second paragraph: delete the colon after Judi Minor’s name. 


Richard Kipp moved and Joe Davidson seconded.  The motion carried unanimously.


C.        September 2010 Finance Report

Judi Minor presented the September 2010 Finance Report and commented that:

·         The projected revenue increase that was budgeted in consideration of the fare increase is not yet occurring. 

·         All natural gas purchases to date have been made below the budgeted amount of $5.50 per Mcf.


Hugh Mose inquired about the negative figure in Interest Expense.  Judi responded that it was a result of a refund received when the Line of Credit was paid off. 


Hugh Mose reported that:

·         Significant losses in ridership on Community Routes were offset by strong ridership on the student corridors.

·         The report includes some estimated ridership numbers on the Campus Service due

to data collection errors.

·         Paratransit ridership is down overall and ridership on non-CATA vehicles is down significantly, which means that Handy Delivery is transporting more riders on CATA van than via individual cab rides.

·         The rideshare program expense line reflects a major maintenance expense on van #5000 and three unassigned vans for which CATA is paying the full insurance premium.

·         Ride-for-Five was down 6% for September and 8.5% for the year.


Chairman Spychalski entertained a motion to receive the September 2010 Finance Report as presented.  Gary Powers moved and Richard Kipp seconded.  The motion carried unanimously.


D.        Bylaws Revisions

The Board reviewed the proposed revisions to the Bylaws as discussed at the October 15, 2010 Board Work Session and made additional suggested corrections and revisions to the document.  Staff was asked to forward to the Board, via email, suggested rewording of Article II, Section 8 & 9 to reflect a more accurate description for the positions of Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer, and to check Article III, Section 5, Attendance at Meetings, against the Municipal Authorities Act of 1945 as Amended and CATA’s Articles of Agreement for clarification of the words “by law”.


Hugh Mose stated that because amending the Bylaws requires that written notice of the proposed changes be provided to the Board at least seven (7) days in advance, formal action would need to be deferred until the November meeting.


E.        Policy Review – Personnel Manual

Julie Hartley presented the following sections of CATA’s Personnel Manual, which is applicable solely to non-represented staff, for Board review and comment:  Introduction; Appointment Procedures, Introductory Periods, and Organizational Structure; Performance Review; Promotions; Demotions and Reclassifications; Work Week; and Types of Leave policies.

                        The following questions and concerns were raised.



2.1       Definitions

Board: terms staggered and overlapping as provided “by law”.  Staff was asked to reference CATA’s Joint Articles of Agreement and The Municipal Authorities Act of 1945 As Amended for clarification of the words “by law”. 


                        General Manager

                        In the event of the General Manager’s absence, the General Manager shall designate a staff

 member to act in that capacity for the duration of the absence. The concern raised was that this wording does not address the death of a General Manager.  Staff was asked to provide a suggested revision for the Board’s consideration at the November Board meeting.


                        2.6      Effective Dates

The question was raised about the accuracy of the August 1 effective date as it pertains to revisions and additions to the manual that may become effective at other times of the year.  Staff was asked to provide a suggested revision for the Board’s consideration at the November Board meeting.   


Appointment Procedures, Introductory Periods and Organizational Structuring

3.1       Definition of employee.   


The question was raised about whether the term employee as used throughout the document is correct in each context based on the categories listed.  Staff was asked to provide a suggested revision to address the concern.


Chairman Spychalski requested that the Board forward any additional comments and suggestions on this portion of the Personnel Manual to Julie Hartley by November 12, which will be included in a revised set of documents to be presented for formal approval at the November Board meeting.





A.        Receipt of FY 2009/10 Audited Financial Statements

Judi Minor reported that Reinsel Kuntz Lesher, LLP, the Authority’s audit firm, has completed both the year-end financial statements and the federally-required single audit report, which includes information on federal grant activity and grantee compliance with federal requirements. Judi presented those documents for the Board’s review as well as copies of the auditor’s report to the Board, which replaces the management letter of previous years. Judi further stated that the information included in the audit was reflected in the June Finance Report distributed at the last Board meeting. 


Judi Minor went on to report that this year, there is one finding included in the single audit report, regarding the fact that backup tapes for the network are not stored off site.  This shortcoming, however, is being addressed  through the Regional Technology Coalition’s provision of a regional back-up system. 


Joe Davidson inquired about the auditor’s citing of a deficiency in the reliable and accurate reconciliation of GuardCard passes sold to revenue collected.  Judi Minor responded that GuardCard software is not accounting software and that there are subsidiary reports that provide the information about which the auditor commented.   


Chairman Spychalski entertained a motion to receive the FY 2009/10 year-end financial audit and single audit reports and authorize their distribution to interested parties.  Joe Davidson moved and Kathryn Bittner seconded.  The motion carried unanimously.


B.        Resolution Authorizing Filing of FY 2010/11 Federal Formula Assistance Grant

Judi Minor presented the resolution authorizing the filing for federal operating and/or capital funds stating that once transit appropriations for the new federal fiscal year have been enacted by Congress, staff will prepare the annual grant application for formula funding (capital and operating assistance) under Section 5307 of the Federal Transit Act; adoption of the required resolution at this time will allow staff to prepare and submit the grant as soon as funding levels have been announced.

Chairman Spychalski entertained a motion that the Board adopt the resolution authorizing the filing of CATA’s FY 2010/11 federal formula assistance grant.  Kathryn Bittner moved and Gary Powers seconded.  The motion carried unanimously.

C.        Resolution to File Consolidated Capital Grant Application (CCA)

Judi Minor presented the resolution required by PennDOT as part of the grant application for FY 2010/11 state capital funds under Act 44.  Judi reported that while the total available for this year is approximately $936,000, the grant application likely will request only a portion of the total for FY 2010/11 funding because the projects and project costs have not been finalized.  In order to expedite approval for the application, which will be completed early in November, a grant amount was not shown in the resolution so that it can be filled in once the initial application is ready for submission. A revised resolution can be adopted later in the year if projects are added to the application.


Judi reported that projects to be included at this time are installation of a regional computer back-up system, replacement of the CNG leak detector system in the maintenance and storage areas of the building, signs and shelters, office and shop equipment, supplemental funding for design and engineering for eventual expansion of the maintenance and bus storage areas (partially funded in the FY 2009/10 grant), and several smaller projects.

Chairman Spychalski entertained a motion that the Board adopt the enclosed resolution and authorize its submission to PennDOT to complete the application for state capital funding with the understanding that staff will fill in the amount of Section 1517 Funds when figures are available.  Joe Davidson moved and Gary Powers seconded.  The motion carried unanimously.

            D.        Stop Improvement Summary

Eric Bernier reported that every year a small portion of the Capital Budget is committed to make improvements to CATA’s bus stops. For a number of years, CATA has been using that money to help leverage larger scale improvements, mostly on the Penn State campus, with CATA providing shelters and benches while the University performed the necessary engineering and construction of such things as pull-offs.  With no major bus stop projects scheduled for campus this past summer, an inventory of existing amenities and the condition of each at a number of off-campus stops was conducted.  It became apparent that with a large number of those stop amenities at, or approaching, 20 years of age, rehabilitation and upgrading of off-campus stop amenities needs to be conducted on an annual basis.  This year’s budget provided about $40,000, which was used on the most pressing rehabilitation and expansion needs and concentrated on the following four areas.


·         Created or expanded concrete pads at six different locations.

·         Relocated existing shelters and added integrated benches where needed.

·         Started replacing old concrete style, damaged and vandalized trash cans with new more vandal resistant powder coated steel receptacles (State College Borough models); added new trash cans where needed.

·         Started adding new style cigarette urns to shelter locations.


Eric Bernier referenced a handout which documented the more high profile changes in the more visible areas.  The last page showed several improvements that were made entirely by private developers as part of approved land development plans.  CATA will eventually assume responsibility for the structures at each of these sites.

Chairman Spychalski acknowledged Eric Bernier and Marsha Kyper’s work on the project and

Eric Bernier acknowledged Jim Ewing’s involvement.


                        Since these items were for review and discussion only, no Board action was required.


A.     General Manager’s Report

Hugh Mose referenced his Bi-weekly Memo which was included in the Board Packet and highlighted

the following items.

·         Possible access to additional Congestion Mitigation Air Quality (CMAQ) funding, which if it cannot be used for Operating expenses will be used for Capital projects.


·         A grant application for Transportation Enhancement funding for a piece of public art outside at the Downtown Pass Sales office.


·         A “homemade” replacement for the combination LCD/PC unit which continually overheated in the display case at the Downtown Office as a solution to restoring realtime information at that location.


·         The discontinuation of Fullington Trailways’ Altoona to State College Commuter Bus Service effective October 29.


·         Completion of the CNG tank replacement project and near completion of the New Flyer bus rehabilitation project.


·         Mark Kutzer and Ed Delbaggio’s trip to Georgia to look at low floor CNG buses becoming available from the Georgia Regional Transportation Authority which has discontinued its bus service.   The buses have remaining federal interest from a Federal Transportation Authority (FTA) grant and, therefore, must be transferred to another grantee. 


·         CATACOMMUTE’s receipt of 20 new registrations and the issuing of the first free, route specific bus pass to assist a vanpool participant in getting to their final destination beyond the terminus of the vanpool.


·         An anticipated significant employee healthcare plan contribution cost increase due to CATA’s recent poor claim’s history.


·         A vacant Operations Supervisor position which may be filled by one or more part time Dispatcher level positions instead of another Supervisor.


Chairman Spychalski inquired how the possibility of acquiring buses from the Georgia Regional Transportation Authority plays into CATA’s plan for Capital Expenditures for its rolling stock, specifically the pending new bus acquisition and the money recently expended on nine, 35’ LYNX buses.  Hugh Mose responded that Louwana Oliva is working on an update to the bus replacement and rehabilitation plan and that a detailed evaluation would need to be conducted before any final decision was made.   Hugh further commented that the Atlanta buses are 40’ and five or six years newer than those obtained from LYNX in Orlando, and that such an acquisition would allow CATA to take the Gillig buses out of its fleet once and for all.   Louwana added that such an acquisition would boost the spare ratio.


B.     Service Development Report

Chairman Spychalski referenced a written report provided by Eric Bernier.  


Chairman Spychalski entertained a motion to adjourn the meeting.  Joe Davidson moved and Kathryn Bittner seconded.  The motion carried unanimously.  The meeting was adjourned at 5:45 p.m.