January 21, 2015 Meeting

1-21-15 | Agenda and Minutes

AGENDA

1. Preparation and Discussion of Budget for Fiscal Year 2015/2016

      
MEETING | Minutes

Attending
Westport Transit District Directors: Eugene Cederbaum and Jennifer Johnson; Town of Westport: Dewey Loselle; and, Norwalk Transit District:  Kimberlee Morton, Richard Bangs and Nancy Carroll.

The meeting was called to order at 10:35 AM. 

Preparation and Discussion of Budget for Fiscal Year 2015/2016
The meeting was convened as a working session for the purpose of developing the budget documents that needed to be submitted to the Town of Westport.  Budget considerations included:

  • Recommendations of the Downtown Master Plan
  • Reallocation of the approximate $60,000 spent on the After School Shuttle
  • NTD tasked with developing options for the reallocated funds
  • Consideration of an Imperial Lot/Downtown/Rail Shuttle
  • Using the terminology “Commuter Rail Access”
  • Use of marketing funding for community wide survey
  • Adding a staff person for planning and marketing, shared with the Norwalk Transit District
  • Whether the budget should be submitted as part of the First Selectman’s budget or as a separate Transit district budget

The Directors requested all information to them by the 28th of the month with a planned Presentation of the Budget for public comment on February 6, 2015 at 10:00 AM.

The meeting was adjourned at 12:45 PM.

February 6, 2015 Meeting

2-6-15 | Agenda and Minutes

AGENDA

1. Presentation of Budget for Fiscal Year 2015/2016
2. Public Comment

      
MEETING | Minutes

Attending
Westport Transit District Directors: Eugene Cederbaum and Jennifer Johnson; Town of Westport: Dewey Loselle; ITN Coastal CT: Tom Green; CTC Member: Sal Liccione; RTM Transit Committee: Peter Gold, Chairman; Commuter Rail Council: John Hartwell; and, Norwalk Transit District:  Kimberlee Morton, Richard Bangs and Nancy Carroll.

The meeting was called to order at 10:00 AM. 

Presentation of Budget for Fiscal Year 2015/2016
Jennifer Johnson did a budget power point presentation.  Elements of the presentation included:

  • Overview of Westport Transit District
  • Challenges
  • Key transit recommendations of the Downtown Master Plan
  • Discussion of the different services provided as Door-to-Door
  • Discussion of the different services provided as Fixed-Route
  • Ridership Trends
  • WTD budget overview
  • Sample option for reallocating After School Shuttle funding
  • Marketing funds
  • New staff position (.5 FTE)

Discussion followed, primarily focusing on the funding of the staff position.  The likelihood of the Norwalk Transit District securing funding from the Connecticut Department of Transportation (ConnDOT) was central to the discussion.  The potential that the person hired be considered a contractor to the Transit District was also discussed should the State not fund the position.

The final decision was to present the budget to the Board of Finance seeking an overall increase of 3.0% from the Town.  The $20,000 line item for Marketing would be maintained.  As a separate line item, the Town share for the position would be listed at $17,714, or 33% of the $53,678 total expense for the position.  The ConnDOT matching request would be noted as a separate line item.

The meeting was adjourned at 12:45 PM.

March 24, 2015 Meeting

3-24-15 | Agenda and Minutes

AGENDA

1. Approval of Minutes from January 21st and February 6th Meetings
2. Public Comment
3. Westport BOF March 17, 2015 vote to cut $37,714 from WTD FY 2016 Budget
4. Marketing Funds - clarification on impact on overall operating budget
5. Marketing FY 2015 - use of funds through June 2015
6. Marketing FY 2016

      
MEETING | Minutes

Attending
Westport Transit District Directors: Eugene Cederbaum and Jennifer Johnson; Town of Westport: Dewey Loselle; Westport RTM: Peter Gold; and, Norwalk Transit District:  Kimberlee Morton, Richard Bangs and Nancy Carroll.

The meeting was called to order at 9:30 AM. 

Approval of Minutes from January 21 and February 6, 2015 Meetings
The minutes of the January 21, 2015 and February 6, 2015 were accepted as presented by Mr. Cederbaum and Mrs. Johnson.

Public Comment
Mr. Gold indicated that the Westport Transit District budget would be presented to the RTM Transit Committee for restoration of the funds eliminated by the Board of Finance.

Discussion of Budget for Fiscal Year 2015/2016 and the BOF March 17, 2015 Vote to Cut $37,714
Norwalk Transit District staff presented an explanation of the relationship of State funding to the annual operating budget over the past 5 years, as well as the Town of Westport’s contribution.  

Mr. Cederbaum requested Mr. Loselle to speak to the First Selectman and ask him to formally request a restoration of the funds cut by the BOF.

Ms. Johnson expressed her concern with the Transit District being included as “Miscellaneous” in the Budget.  A specified line item would make it easier for the general public to review and comment.

The meeting was adjourned at 11:30 AM.

May 20, 2015 Meeting

5-20-15 | Agenda and Minutes

AGENDA

1. Approval of Minutes from March 24, 2015 Meeting
2. Public Comment
3. NTD: Operations Update (ridership/budget & staffing)
4. Signage at the train station
5. After-School shuttle: reallocation of service
6. Discussion - WTD Goals, Project Prioritization, Support

      
MEETING | Minutes

Attending
Westport Transit District Directors: Eugene Cederbaum and Jennifer Johnson; Town of Westport: Dewey Loselle; Westport RTM: Peter Gold; and, Norwalk Transit District:  Nancy Carroll.

The meeting was called to order at 10:10 AM. 

Approval of Minutes from March 24, 2015 Meetings
The minutes of the March 24, 2015 meeting were accepted, as presented, by Mr. Cederbaum and Ms. Johnson.

General Discussion
The meeting opened with a general discussion.  Mr. Cederbaum thanked the Norwalk Transit District and the RTM Transit Committee for their help and support during the budget process as full restoration would not have been possible otherwise.  Ms. Johnson spoke of the need to plan developments for seniors as it relates to transportation.  Mr. Gold noted that transportation should be considered as a necessary infrastructure that is for the public good.  Ms. Johnson suggested hosting a forum and starting a dialogue on the Public Good.  Mr. Cederbaum was interested in crafting a survey that would elicit responses from Westport residents on their transportation needs and perceptions.  The survey results would provide strategies for the FY 16/17 budget. Ms. Johnson asked that the public comments at the RTM Restoration Hearing be included in the record. http://www.westportct.gov/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=8271

Public Comment
There was no public comment.

NTD: Operations Update (ridership/budget and staffing)
Ridership data was shared.  Ms. Johnson requested a different format for future reports with comparative data offered for each route and trend lines.  Mr. Cederbaum was interested in establishing benchmarks and looking to comparable systems to assist in the process.  Mr. Gold was interested in Metro North boardings at the stations.

Mrs. Carroll reported that the State budget request would be submitted on May 22nd.  The request for the new position would be included with a draft job description. General discussion followed regarding the tasks and goals assigned to the position; where the employee would be physically located; accountability; who would have oversight responsibility; including grant seeking and writing in the job description; and providing quarterly updates to the RTM.  

Signage at the Train Station
Ms. Johnson reported that the signs need to be printed and professionally installed.  All approvals are in place.  Mr. Cederbaum requested Mr. Loselle to ask the Police Department to oversee the process of putting up the signs.

After School Shuttles: Reallocation of Resources
It was agreed that a number of options should be considered and the cost for each option should be determined.  The meeting in June would be dedicated to route changes.  Mr. Gold suggested the collection of origin and destination data for purposes of making a decision on the reallocation of the funding,

WTD Goals, Project Prioritization and Support
The discussion of goals was tabled for a future meeting, however, some of the concerns that were brought up included: idling of vehicles at the railroad station; bike racks on the body-on-chassis vehicles; deploying ITS equipment in Westport; inclusion of Westport in Norwalk Comprehensive Operational Analysis; and the Town addressing the mobility issues faced my residents.

The meeting was adjourned at 11:30 AM.

June 3, 2015 Meeting

6-3-15 | Agenda and Minutes

AGENDA

1. Public Comment
2. Discussion of Extended Hours on Commuter Routes
3.Other Business

      
MEETING | Minutes

Attending
Westport Transit District Directors: Eugene Cederbaum and Jennifer Johnson; Westport RTM: Peter Gold; and, Norwalk Transit District:  Nancy Carroll and Linda DeLallo.

The meeting was called to order at 9:00 AM. 

Public Comment
There was no public comment.

Discussion of Extended Hours on Commuter Routes
The meeting continued as a working session for the purpose of discussing commuter shuttle extended service hour options and the costs.  The discussion focused on the following:

  • Evaluating the raw data, trip by trip for each route, for the following periods
  • October 2014
  • March 2015
  • May 2015
  • Conducting spot sampling on S1 to determine what direction passengers are traveling.
  • Gathering origin and destination data from ITS software.
  • Conducting a user survey to gather desired train information.
  • Use marketing funding for community wide survey (Monkey Survey)
  • Obtain quote for redesign of map to include more detail (streets, commuter lots, points of interest); individual route maps

The Directors requested all information be brought to the next meeting where the discussion would continue.

The scheduled July 10, 2015 meeting was cancelled.  The next meeting was rescheduled for July 15, 2015 at 9:00 AM.

Other Business
There was no other business.

The meeting was adjourned at 11:00 AM.

July 15, 2015 Meeting

7-15-15 | Agenda and Minutes

AGENDA

1. Public Comment
2. WTD Ridership Survey
3. Discussion on extension of commuter route hours (continuation of June 3, 2015 discussion)
4. Marketing

      
MEETING | Minutes

Attending
Westport Transit District Directors: Eugene Cederbaum and Jennifer Johnson; Westport RTM: Peter Gold; and, Norwalk Transit District:  Nancy Carroll and Linda DeLallo.

The meeting was called to order at 9:10 AM. 

Public Comment
There was an inquiry as to the status of the new position.  Mrs. Carroll indicated there had been no response from ConnDOT.  Mr. Cederbaum offered to submit a support letter for the additional funding, if it was appropriate.

Discussion of Extended Hours on Commuter Routes (continuation of June 3, 2015 discussion)
The meeting continued as a working session for the purpose of discussing commuter shuttle extended service hour options and the costs.  The discussion focused on the following:

  • Reviewing the ridership data compilation for the following months:
  • October 2014
  • March 2015
  • May 2015
  • Reviewing the responses to the user survey administered June 18 through June 24.

The Directors requested the following information for the next meeting:
1.   Analyze the ridership data further. (E. Cederbaum)
2.   Cost out meeting the 8:33 AM train on all routes. (J. Johnson)
3.   Cost out meeting earlier trains. (J. Johnson)
4.   Cost out adding a train in the evening. (J. Johnson)
5.   Consider reducing service on the S1 on non-productive trips (P. Gold)
6.   Consider rerouting S1 and S2.

Marketing
The RTM and the CTC should be included in marketing updates.

The next meeting, for purposes of continuing the discussion on commuter route hours was scheduled for August 20, 2015 at 4:00 PM.

The meeting was adjourned at 10:30 AM.

August 20, 2015 Meeting

8-20-15 | Agenda and Minutes

AGENDA

1. Public Comment
2. WTD Ridership Survey
3. Discussion on extension of commuter route hours (continuation of July 15, 2015 discussion)
4. Marketing 

     
MEETING | Minutes

Attending
Westport Transit District Directors: Eugene Cederbaum and Jennifer Johnson; Westport RTM: Peter Gold; CTC Member: Sal Liccione; and, Norwalk Transit District:  Nancy Carroll and Kimberlee Morton.

The meeting was called to order at 4:00 PM. 

Public Comment
Mr. Liccione expressed the need for better service between the Downtown and the rail station, especially in the evening. Ms. Johnson noted that the RBA Group, are the consultants hired by the Town to prepare a Downtown Master Plan.  The Downtown Steering Committee does not have a transit member.  Ms. Morton suggested that the Directors ask for a seat on the committee.  Mr. Gold suggested the Directors send a letter to the First Selectman requesting their participation on the committee.

WTD Ridership Surveys
Mrs. Carroll presented the ridership data for the month of July in the new format requested by the Directors.

Mrs. Carroll also shared a sample map that plotted persons on the Town’s Waiting List for a parking permit at the rail station, along with the existing S2 route, and a modified S2 route.  The GIS data was used to demonstrate how a minor route deviation might capture additional riders. 

Discussion of Extended Hours on Commuter Routes (continuation of July 15, 2015 discussion)
Mrs. Carroll presented the costs for the various service options requested at the July 15, 2015 meeting.  That analysis is attached.  Ms. Johnson moved to adopt Option 2.  Mr. Cederbaum seconded the motion.  It was passed unanimously.

It was agreed that public outreach was necessary and that a press release should be developed.

Discussion continued and Mr. Gold suggested consideration should be given to extended hours for the Imperial Lot Shuttle.  The Directors requested Mrs. Carroll to cost out such extensions and to notify them of the costs.

Marketing
Mr. Cederbaum noted the need to establish a calendar of activities for updating the CTC, RTM and BOF.

The meeting was adjourned at 5:35 PM.

October 9, 2015 Meeting

10-9-15 | Agenda and Minutes

AGENDA

1. Public Comment
2. Extended Service hours Effective October 12, 2015
3. FY'16 Quarterly Update to RTM
4. Review of Routes
5. Bridge Street Bridge
6. NTD: Operations Update (ridership, budget and staffing)
7. Other Business

      
MEETING | Minutes

Attending
Westport Transit District Directors: Eugene Cederbaum and Jennifer Johnson; Westport RTM: Peter Gold; CTC Member: Sal Liccione; Westport Human Services, Barbara Butler; Public: John Hartwell and Laurie Bloom; and, Norwalk Transit District:  Nancy Carroll 

The meeting was called to order at 10:00 AM.

Public Comment
Ms. Laurie Bloom offered comments regarding an incident involving Hilda Cole on September 21, 2015 and her dissatisfaction with the communication surrounding the incident.   Barbara Butler offered comments supporting the communication breakdown that sometimes occur and the extended wait in a telephone queue.

Mr. Liccione indicated the CTC’s approval of the District’s decision to extend service hours.

Mr. Hartwell recommended the Westport Directors send a letter to the Downtown Steering Committee for an opportunity to participate in their process.

Extended Service Hours Effective October 12, 2015
The marketing of the extended service was discussed.  Ideas brought forth included:

  • Sign in station
  • Email to wait list
  • Full email blast to community
  • Posters
  • Station signs

It was agreed that a meeting devoted to marketing of services should be scheduled so an in depth conversation could occur.  The Directors agreed to meet on November 12, 2016 at 10:00 AM.  The Special Meeting would be focused on marketing.

FY’16 Quarterly Update to RTM
It was decided that a report should be scheduled for the end of October and the RTM Transit Committee will send suggested dates.

Review of Routes
Following the marketing focus it was agreed that routes would be looked at with a focus on the Greens Farms routes first and integration with the Sherwood Island Connector lot, followed by the S1 and S2.

Bridge Street Bridge
Discussion took place regarding the traffic back-up on the bridge and the impact on timely arrivals at the rail station in the morning.

NTD: Operations Update
The Transit District reported on ConnDOT funding levels.  Questions were psed as to the sum of money received from RR Parking based on the imperial Lot parking.

The District also gave an update on the ITS project.

The meeting was adjourned at 11:45 AM.

December 11, 2015 Meeting

Calendar > Westport Transit District Directors' Meetings > 12-11-2015 Agenda and Minutes

12-11-15 | Agenda and Minutes

AGENDA

1. Public Comment
2. Extended Service hours Effective October 12, 2015
3. FY'17 Budget
4. NTD: Operations Update (ridership, budget and staffing)
5. Other Business

      
MEETING | Minutes

Attending
Westport Transit District Directors: Eugene Cederbaum; Westport First Selectman: Jim Marpe; Westport RTM: Peter Gold; and, Norwalk Transit District:  Nancy Carroll 

The meeting was called to order at 10:05 AM although only one Director was present.

Public Comment
Mr. Cederbaum noted that Jennifer Johnson would no longer serve as a Transit District Director but her detailed understanding of public transportation needs will be greatly appreciated in her new role on the RTM.

Mr. Marpe extended comments on behalf of the Town of Westport noting Ms. Johnson’s three plus years of service and how difficult it would be to replace the skillset that she represented.  Further, he thanked Mr. Cederbaum for his service to the Town in anticipation of his retirement as a Westport Transit District Director.

Mr. Cederbaum suggested that the next meeting the relationship between the Westport Transit District and the Norwalk Transit District be discussed as well as the relationship to the Department of Human Services.

Ridership – Extended Service Hours Effective October 12, 2015.
Mrs. Carroll provided ridership data to date. Marketing of services was discussed with emphasis on targeted emails.  Mr. Gold suggested repeated messages using multiple email lists (wait list; Parks and Rec, etc)

FY’17 Budget
The planning position was discussed and how such a position might be funded.

NTD: Operations Update
No updates.

The meeting was adjourned at 11:00 AM.