We’re makin’ some progress

Capital Metro published its promised community progress report today outlining the status of several recommendations made by the Texas Sunset Advisory Commission in July.

Capital Metro has been working hard to make needed changes, and the report indicates the agency’s substantial progress.  Eleven of the 18 recommendations are either fully implemented or substantially implemented.

“The swift progress made on these recommendations demonstrates Capital Metro’s commitment to transparency, accountability and credibility,” said President/CEO Linda S. Watson. “This is a clear signal that we are raising the bar and changing the way we do business every day. Our efforts will not stop here because we must earn the public’s trust to successfully fulfill our critical role within the community.”

The Sunset recommendations focus on four key areas: finance, labor, rail and governance/public engagement. Capital Metro addressed several recommendations at the board of directors meeting on Sept. 24 when the board approved:

– Balanced budget for FY2011, including capital spending (the complete, adopted budget document will be available online soon)
– Cash reserve policy
– Railroad bridge replacement plan
– Community involvement policy
– Advisory committee policy
– MetroAccess policy changes
– Elimination of free fares for seniors and passengers with disabilities (pending public outreach and final approval of the proposed fare structure)

Capital Metro also exceeded Sunset recommendations by earning the “Gold” designation from the Texas Comptroller Leadership Circle for posting detailed financial information online.

Austin’s transit agency shows how to do transparency

From the Austin American-Statesman editorial page:

Austin’s transit agency shows how to do transparency

EDITORIAL BOARD

Words you never thought you’d see strung together in a sentence: Other governmental agencies can take a lesson from Capital Metro.

That’s right, the well-intended people at our local transportation agency — the very same people who at times can look like a gang that can’t shoot straight — are 
pacesetters in a very important slice of governance. And it’s caught the eye of Texas Comptroller Susan Combs, who has awarded Cap Metro a “gold” designation for governmental transparency.

What Cap Metro did to earn the recognition is both simple and valuable. The agency’s capmetro.org website now includes a treasure trove of data about the movement of money, including past and current financial information, audits and executive salaries. Continue reading “Austin’s transit agency shows how to do transparency”

Sunset Review Begins

The Sunset Advisory Commission’s review of Capital Metro is underway, as required by Senate Bill 1263 which passed during the last legislative session. Click here to read the official notice.

If you would like to share your ideas about Capital Metro you may send an email to the address below, use the comment form on the Sunset Commission website, or contact Christian Ninaud of the Sunset staff. Suggestions are preferred by December 31, 2009 so they can be fully considered by the Sunset staff.

Sunset Advisory Commission

P.O. Box 13066

Austin, Texas 78711

512/463-1300

Fax: 512/463-0705

Email: sunset@sunset.state.tx.us