May 24th, 2018 Norwalk Transit District Commissioner's Minutes

Norwalk Transit District Commissioners’ Special Meeting Minutes



May 24, 2018 at 2:00 PM – Norwalk Transit District

For a downloadable copy of the minutes CLICK HERE





Norwalk Transit District Commissioners:

Andrew Glickson

Alice McQuaid


Norwalk Transit District Staff: 

Kimberlee Morton, CEO

Britt Liotta, Chief Operating Officer

Lynette Brayboy, Manager of Human Resources

Lori Richards, Procurement and Grants Manager

Richard Meyer, Director of Maintenance and Facilities

Dennis O’Connor, Manager of Planning and Marketing


The meeting was called to order at 2:03 PM and a quorum was determined to be present. 


Members of the public who wished to address the Commissioners were asked to do so.  There were none.   

Approval of Minutes of April 26, 2018

The minutes of the April 26, 2018 Meeting of the Commissioners were unanimously approved as presented. 


April 2018 Financial Report

Mr. Pentz summarized the attached April 2018 financial report including the following highlights. 

  • $327,540 deficit from the Coastal Link service, which is to be covered by the $285,689 Norwalk CORE surplus, highlighting the states responsibility to cover the residual $42k deficit though 10 months of FY 18.


  • Announced $400k TOD increase received for Stamford ADA, which cleared up the deficit from prior month, which is also expected to be sufficient the cover the full year of Stamford ADA operations.


  • Communicated the $188k Norwalk ADA deficit, to be funded with local money


  • Communicated the $35,294 Norwalk Coastal Link deficit, to be funded by the state


Draft FY 2019 Budget

Ms. Morton noted that this agenda item would be tabled until the next meeting as budgetary adjustments are needed given the recent news relative to full funding of the Special Transportation fund. 


Outstanding CDOT

  • Mr. Pentz presented an update on agreements with the CDOT to fund prior year TOD commitments.  He also provided an updated timeline (attached), noting cash receipts were expected in several days.


  • Provided an update on the current available credit for operations, mentioning sufficiency for Short-term operations




    Parts Room

    Mr. Meyer reported Joe Gurrieri and Rich Aldo are wrapping up the process of re-organizing the entire Parts Room, just in time for Inventory. 


    Service Truck

    Mr. Meyer advised new service vehicle selection has begun.  The Ford, Chevrolet and Dodge dealers that participate in the state contracts have been contacted with specifications.  Currently he has quotes from Crowley Ford & MHQ Ford Dealers and is expecting a quote from Dodge.





    Ms. Morton reported that due to the public hearing process, and the several moving pieces associated with it, the ridership report would be tabled for the month.  Mr. Liotta commented that the ridership overall is very consistent at this point, with no trends up or down.


    Approval of Route Changes

    Ms. Morton noted that with the State coming through with at a minimum funding equal to the last fiscal year, several of the proposals that were presented to the Commissioners last month have since been removed.  Mr. Liotta then presented the remaining proposals to the Commissioners.  Ms. Morton commented that there was significant public comment on the service suspension of the Wheels 1, so a deep dive data analysis would be done to determine whether or not we should proceed with the suspension or look to peak service only as a mitigating solution to determine if ridership can support the need for future services. 


    Mr. Liotta commented on the next meeting, and the need to have a special meeting to get approval on the final recommendations.  Mr. Liotta stated that he needs to finalize the routing information to be able to properly adjust routes for the upcoming bid for the drivers.  Ms. Morton noted that this information is also needed to properly prepare the FY 2019 draft budget.  Mr. Liotta stated that he would have the final recommendations done by the mid of next week to distribute to the Commissioners to get final approval.




    Ongoing Architectural and Engineering Services RFQ Release

    Expected week of May 28th.  RFQ will be awarded based on qualifications.  Tasks will be outlined in the RFQ and price will be negotiated upon order.


    Bus Procurement Update

    Received questions and approved equals for review and response due June 1, 2018.  Proposals due June 22, 2018.





    Mr. O’Connor reviewed the attached presentation which highlighted the following items.

  • Exterior/Interior Advertising Program & Pricing

  • Branding Opportunities

  • Strategic Partnerships

  • On-Demand Transportation Demo


    After the presentation a more detailed discussion ensured regarding the cost of future bus advertising fees to be charged by the District.  Mr. O’Connor further explained the rationale behind the comparative analysis and how he arrived at his recommendations.  Ms. Morton added that she was in support of the recommendation and that we should move forward with the pricing as presented as the pricing could be changed at any time if it is found that it was out of market range. 


    The Commissioners unanimously voted to adopt the pricing structure as presented. 


    HR Update


    Non-Union Bargaining Unit Personnel Manual Update Regarding Working Holidays

    The Handbook approved last month inadvertently was absent a change regarding “Working Holidays”.  The current policy states employees that work on the working holiday will be paid double time.  It should correctly state that employees that work on the working holiday will be paid time and one-half for all hours worked as long as they have worked the scheduled day before and after the holiday. 

    Ms. Brayboy reported the following activity during the previous month.



  • Safety & Security Manager

  • Procurement/Inventory Control Specialist

  • Operations Dispatcher 

  • Part-time Cleaner

  • Part-time Fixed Route and ADA/Shuttle Drivers – on hold



  • Part-time Money Counter –start date Wednesday, May 30, 2018


  • Procurement/Inventory Control

  • PT ADA/Shuttle Driver

  • Part-time Money Counter


CT Partnership Health Plans Premiums Changes

  • July 1, 2018 medical renewal premiums are 8% higher than current rates that went into effect on October 1, 2017.


  • July 1, 2018 dental renewal premiums are 6.5% higher than current rates that went into effect on July 1, 2017.


  • We had a -8.5% medical rate reduction was granted to groups that accepted the SEBAC plan design changes for October 1, 2017, in advance of the July 1, 2018 renewal. 


  • Partnership Dental is fully insured (the medical plan is self-funded).


  • The July 1, 2018 renewal rates are 2.34% higher for the medical plan than the Partnership rates we accepted when first joining on January 1, 2017.


  • There were no plan design changes for the medical and dental.


  • Contract ends with CT Partnership on December 31, 2019.

Ms. Morton noted that the CT Partnership health care premium continues to be significantly lower than the Connecticare rates offered in January 2017 with a HDHP (High Deductible Health Plan) and HSA (Health Savings Account) which compounds the savings and are even higher than presented.  Ms. Morton requested the Commissioners to formally adopt the renewal of the Health and Dental Plans as presented.  Commissioners Glickson and McQuaid approved the request. 




Ms. Morton informed the Commissioners that the Redevelopment Agency Board of Commissioners formally approved $25,000 in support of the project.  Ms. Morton provided a copy of recent press articles on the subject and thanked Executive Director Tim Sheehan for his support. 



Ms. Morton advised that the recent AccuCOMP USA independent audit of our experience rating resulted in reduction of our 2017 Experience Rating by 2 points.  Based upon our 2016 premium I should save about $5,000.  The great news is the correction will also reduce our 2018 rating from 1.04 to 1.02. 

Engagement of PKF O’Connor Davies, LLP

Ms. Morton informed the Commissioners that PKF O’Connor Davies, LLP was selected by our TPA, legal counsel, Pension Investment Company and District representatives to review the W-2 filing issue.  The contract was presented to the Commissioners for approval.  Commissioners Glickson and McQuaid approved the representation. 

Norwalk Board of Education

Ms. Morton noted that the initial meeting with the Superintendent of Schools and staff regarding the utilization went extremely well.  She advised she had nominated Mr. Liotta as a member of a Committee that would review future student transportation needs.  Ms. Morton noted that the District’s interest was solely in the provision of student transportation directly on a fixed or commuter route.  Detailed discussions were had regarding the duplication existing services and current and new commuter services that the District currently has in its short range plan. 




Ms. Morton reported at the 11th hour the Legislature voted to sufficiently fund the Special Transportation Fund.  At this time DOT has advised that initial TOD’s will be issued at the same level of funding as FY 2018 with consideration of possible additional funding after review of budget submittals from transit systems in consideration with the final funding amounts DOT will receive.  Ms. Morton noted that this was made possible primarily by moving the new car tax from the General Fund to the Special Transportation Fund.  Tolls have been placed on hold and Ms. Morton advocacy will be a primary focus again in the next budget year as this fix does not address the long term funding shortfall. 


Any Other Business Properly Brought before the Board

No further business was brought before the Commissioners.



Next Meeting June 28, 2018 at 9:00 AM Was Cancelled

The next regularly scheduled meeting for June 28, 2018 was cancelled.  A special meeting will be scheduled and noticed for the first week of June to address the tabled budget and service changes. 



The meeting adjourned at 3:27 PM. 




Respectfully submitted,



Kimberlee A. Morton



Kimberlee A Morton, CEO

Norwalk Transit District