CENTRE AREA TRANSPORTATION AUTHORITY

 

PUBLIC HEARING,

REGULAR BOARD MEETING AND WORK SESSION

MINUTES

Print Version

February 24, 2014

4:00 p.m.

Borough Council Chambers, 243 S. Allen Street

State College, PA 16801

 

BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT:     John Spychalski, Chairman

Richard Kipp, Treasurer

Tom Kurtz

 

EXCUSED:                                        Joe Davidson, Vice- Chairman

Tammy Gentzel

 

STAFF PRESENT:                             Hugh Mose, General Manager

Louwana Oliva, Assistant General Manager

Kimberly Fragola, Director of Administration

Ryan Harshbarger, Director of Transportation

Mark Kutzer, Maintenance Manager

Eric Bernier, Service Development Manager

Chris Jordan, Operations Manager

Greg Kausch, Senior Transportation Planner

Joe Soloski, Financial Analyst

Marsha Kyper, Assistant to the General Manager

 

OTHERS PRESENT:                         Andrew Bradshaw, Daily Collegian

Matt Carroll, Centre Daily Times

Barry Pearce, AFSCME Council 83 Representative

Jolley Harris, Bellefonte resident

R. P. Vernon, Lemont resident

 

       I.            CALL TO ORDER

Chairman Spychalski called the meeting to order at 4:04 p.m.

 

    II.            PUBLIC HEARING TO RECEIVE SUGGESTIONS ON BUS SERVICE CHANGES AND A PROPOSED FARE INCREASE

Eric Bernier referenced his memo which outlined possible service changes for consideration in FY 2014/15 and the recommended process for the Public Hearing as well as a memo containing three comments that were received prior to the meeting, from individuals who were unable to attend. Kimberly Fragola referenced her memo regarding the proposed fare increase.

 

 

The following comments were received prior to the meeting from individuals who were unable to attend the Public Hearing:

 

Hemant Yennawar 

Could the R buses wait (time-point) at the intersection of Blue Course and Stratford or even better Blue Course and Southgate, instead of the current wait at Stratford near Waupelani? Many people like me who live on the other side of Blue Course drive (Greentree neighborhood) will get home sooner. 

Apoorva Karamchandani

I am a graduate student at Penn State and a daily user of CATA bus service. Being a Ph.D. student, I am going to be here at Penn State during summer time and have observed from last two years that there is a need of better and continuous connectivity during summer time. I understand that most of the undergraduate students take off during this time; however, reduced connectivity for V route affects us, who have to conduct their research work during summer time, to great extent. Probably running VE with reduced schedule or increasing V might solve the problem. I hope you would understand the situation and will give a thought over this issue.

Karen Harvey, Bellefonte Borough Council Member

Re:       CATA Bus Routes Serving Bellefonte

Some comments and questions that might be raised with CATA officials:

·         The first 3 inbound routes (see attached XB Route Timetable) serve well University staff and those who work in State College

·         However, the 12:11 inbound route is a change from schedules in past years which had a 10:15 or so inbound route; this arrived in the center of the Penn State campus at roughly 10:40

·         The earlier schedule served university faculty, undergrads, and graduate students far better- particularly those who did not have early morning classes.  The 12:11 inbound arrives too late for this group

·         An earlier route would not appear to impact significantly outbound ridership.  In fact, an earlier bus arriving at the Mall, Corrections Facility or Weis Market might be more advantageous to this ridership group

·         Because Bellefonte has an increasing number of University faculty and grad students in particular who choose to reside here, it would be helpful to know why the schedule was changed.  It’s impossible to tell the basis for the decision from Ridership by Route figures (attached).  If a survey was conducted, again it would be helpful to know when- it may be that a more recent survey would reveal potential ridership that is currently being overlooked, i.e. those Penn State faculty and students from Bellefonte who do not find the current 12:11 inbound route suitable for their schedules. 

 

The following comment was received during the Public Hearing portion of the meeting:

Jolley Harris, Bellefonte, PA, commented that, due to the apartment complex being built across from the Sheetz store in Bellefonte, it might be useful to add another run to the XB (Bellefonte) Route which currently ends at 8:55 p.m., and that adding the VN on Saturday every 30 minutes might be beneficial. 

No further members of the public stepped forward to offer comments. 

Chairman Spychalski closed the Public Hearing portion of the meeting at 4:16 p.m.

III.       ANNOUNCEMENT OF EXECUTIVE SESSION

Chairman Spychalski announced that an Executive Session had been held on January 31, 2014 to discuss personnel matters.

 

IV.       PUBLIC COMMENT

There was no public comment.

 

V.        INTRODUCTION

Donny Lynch, CATA’s new IT Specialist, was introduced to the Board.

 

VI.       OLD BUSINESS

            A.        Approval of Minutes of January 27, 2014 Board Meeting

Chairman Spychalski entertained a motion to approve the minutes of the January 27, 2014 Regular Board Meeting, with the deletion of the words “or subsequent revisions” from the motion on page 2, Section D.  Richard Kipp moved and Tom Kurtz seconded.  The motion carried unanimously.

 

B.        Approval of Minutes of February 14, 2014 Board Work Session

Chairman Spychalski entertained a motion to approve the minutes of the February 14, 2014 Board Work Session. Tom Kurtz moved and Richard Kipp seconded. The motion carried unanimously.

 

C.        Approval of Minutes of February 19, 2014 Board Work Session

Chairman Spychalski entertained a motion to approve the minutes of the February 19, 2014 Board Work Session. Richard Kipp moved and Tom Kurtz seconded. The motion carried unanimously.

 

D.        January 2014 Finance Report

Kimberly Fragola referenced the new report format and distribution of a revised Consolidated Statement of Revenues and Expenditures. Chairman Spychalski

entertained a motion to receive the January 2014 Finance Report. Richard Kipp moved and Tom Kurtz seconded. The motion carried unanimously.

 

 

 

 

E.        Performance Reports

Ryan Harshbarger reported that there had been a 15.7% decrease in ridership during January 2014 when compared to January 2013, which can likely be attributed to there being four fewer Full Service Days in 2014.  Hugh Mose commented on the paratransit and Fare Media reports. Chairman Spychalski entertained a motion to receive the January 2014 Performance Reports. Richard Kipp moved and Tom Kurtz seconded.  The motion carried unanimously.

 

VII.    OTHER BUSINESS

           A.          General Manager’s Report

Hugh Mose reported on CATA’s 40th Anniversary Celebration plans including: the schedule for airing of the program which he, Chairman Spychalski and Jackie Sheader had taped for C-net titled “ The CATA Success Story – 40 Years in the Making;” a Free Ride Day on March 3; and the “In Transit” Photo Contest.  Hugh also commented on the progress of the budget process.

 

Hugh went on to report that Louwana Oliva will be attending a meeting of the Halfmoon Township Board of Supervisors to address their concerns regarding ridership and the continuation of their financial support of the G (Stormstown) Route; FTA approval of the grant submission for the building expansion project has been received; the staff will be meeting with Ferguson Township officials to discuss revisions to the facility expansion design plans; the impact of severe winter weather on all aspects of the service; the SEDA COG Transit Consolidation Study meeting; and preparations for dealing with State Patty’s Day.

 

B.        Service Development Report

Chairman Spychalski referenced a written report from Service Development Manager, Eric Bernier.  Eric reported on a meeting regarding the addition of street lighting at the intersection of Martin Street and Parkcrest Lane, which will help to light the bus shelters. 

 

VIII.    ADJOURNMENT

Chairman Spychalski declared the meeting adjourned at 4:46 p.m.

 

The Board took a brief recess and then reconvened for a Work Session to cover agenda topics from the February 19, 2014 Work Session, which, due to time constraints, had not been addressed.

 

I.          CALL TO ORDER

Chairman Spychalski called the Work Session to order at 5 p.m.

 

II.        OLD BUSINESS

            A.        Strategic Visioning Exercise

Hugh Mose reported that at the February 19, 2014 Strategic Plan Board Work Session, a full agenda had precluded discussion on three visioning exercise items;

alternative fuels, sustainability and new service models.  Hugh then provided his comments on each item.  Greg Kausch captured comments regarding those three topics.  

 

B.        CATA Strategic Plan Update – Chapter 2 (Current CATA Operations) and Project Status Report

Greg Kausch reported that a full agenda at the February 19, 2014 Work Session had precluded discussion of Part two of Chapter 2 of the Strategic Plan.  Greg then captured comments regarding Chapter 2 of the Strategic Plan Update, and provided an overall status report on the project.

 

III.       ADJOURNMENT

            Chairman Spychalski declared the Work Session adjourned at 5:53 p.m.    

 

 

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Hugh A. Mose, Secretary

 

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