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More Joy from Unaccountable Government?

Today’s Examiner newspaper carries three stories on the out-of-control pension and overtime costs at WMATA. They include:

  1. Metro drivers make $100,000 in pay in which they report that over “100 Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority bus and train operators took home paychecks topping $100,000 in fiscal 2006 because of lush overtime earnings that have skewed Metro’s budget and sent pension costs spiraling out of control under a uniquely generous employee retirement plan.”
  2. Metro staff hop on overtime gravy train, which notes WMATA “makes hefty overtime payments to more employees than just bus and train operators. Personnel putting in lucrative extra time include police officers, station managers, mechanics and maintenance workers.”
  3. Pension formula sends costs soaring for Metro. The Examiner quotes the chairman of WMATA’s board who says “to have any chance of significantly cutting its budget-busting overtime bills, the authority must change key provisions in its labor contract with its primary employee union.”

If none of the above bothers you, then you probably won’t mind the unaccountability of the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority, which must be licking its chops with the money that will pour into NVTA’s coffers resulting from passage of the transportation bill (HB 3202) by the 2007 General Assembly. In fact, tonight’s NVTA meeting will discuss the next steps needed to implement HB 3202. We’re guessing it will do nothing but require additional concern on the part of Northern Virginia taxpayers. By the way, the Examiner stories provide a list of WMATA's workforce that received the large overtime payments.

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