Reporting Joe Shortsleeve
BOSTON (CBS) – The I-Team finds the new head of the MBTA, Beverly Scott, is leaving a troubled transportation system in Atlanta. Scott will now inherit huge problems when she takes over.
Scott was chosen unanimously by the MBTA board.
The I-Team has obtained a copy of an audit done for MARTA, The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority, and as Beverly Scott prepares to take over the MBTA, this report raises serious questions about the health of the transit system that she managed for five years.
It is not a secret that the MBTA is a challenged aging transit system facing massive deficits and often unhappy riders.
This rider describes the experience this way.
“The buses are always not on schedule. This is frustrating otherwise I don’t like to take it. I just have to take it.”
But it appears Scott has experience with troubled systems.
She is leaving behind MARTA, Atlanta’s regional system, which an independent audit concluded recently requires “fundamental and significant” across the board changes.
The KPMG audit found MARTA’s
- Current economic model unsustainable
- Will exhaust reserves by 2018
- High rates of employee absenteeism
- Annual retirement costs higher than national average
Beverly Scott was recruited and approved unanimously by the state transportation board last month. That day she spoke about her new job.
“The ‘T’ is just an asset not just for this town but this region and nation as well,” she said.
Atlanta transit officials had only good things to say about Scott’s five years at the helm.
“We are also proud of all the hard work and the exemplary leadership of Dr. Beverly A. Scott and her incredibly talented and dedicated staff. As she moves on to her next assignment in Boston, we will look to her for guidance.”
The I-Team caught up with Governor Patrick today to ask him about the audit’s conclusions but he had little to say.
Shortsleeve: Were you aware of this audit?
Governor: “I am going to tell you we have a great new director. She is going to be strong. She is exactly what we need and I look forward to working with her.”
Shortsleeve: Governor, this audit found that their economic model is unsustainable?
The Governor then moved on to a scheduled event.
A few hours later, the Governor’s office called to say that Beverly Scott was the one who actually asked that the audit be done.
The I-Team also contacted the Secretary of Transportation, but we were told there would be no comment on the audit. Secretary Davey was traveling out of the country. We also reached out to the joint chairmen of the Transportation Committee on Beacon Hill.
However, both lawmakers were unavailable to talk to us today.