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Greater Hartford Transit District
Hartford Connecticut
February 8, 2018

Frank Lord, Vice Chairman

At 7:02 p.m., a quorum determined to be present; Mr. Lord called the Regular Meeting of the Board of Directors of the Greater Hartford Transit District (the "District") to order in the Conference Room of the District at One Union Place, Hartford, Connecticut.  The following Directors were present: Joan Gamble (1.84), Bloomfield; Peter J. Bonzani (2.30) and Marilyn Pet (2.30), East Hartford; Mark Lockwood (1.01), Granby; Frank Lord (2.79), and Jennifer Cassidy (2.79) arrived at 7:05pm, Hartford; James R. McCavanagh (2.61) and Paul McNamara (2.61), Manchester; William G. Hall (1.37), Newington; Gary Pitcock (1.15), South Windsor; David Giordano (2.83) West Hartford; Brendan T. Flynn (1.19) and Peter Gardow (1.19), Wethersfield; Ricardo Quintero (1.30) and David Raney (1.30), Windsor.  District staff present were; Vicki L. Shotland, Executive Director (by conference call), Nhan Vo-Le, Director of Fiscal & Administrative Services, Mary Deppe, Manager of Grants and Planning and LaShaunda Drake, Procurement and Contract Coordinator.  (The numbers represented in the parenthesis of this paragraph equate to the weighted vote for each Director in attendance.) 

The Vice Chairman asked if there was any members of the public who wished to address the board.  There were none.  Mr. Lord then moved adoption of the December 14, 2017 meeting minutes, at    7:04pm Mr. Quintero made a motion to accept the minutes which was seconded by Mr. Gardow and approved without modification by a vote of 23.48 yea, 0.00 nay and 2.31 abstention.

Mr. Lord then asked that Ms. Vo-Le to present the financial report.  She presented a summary of the District’s financial results in comparison to its budget and actuals for the Special Revenue Fund, General Fund, Spruce Street Parking Lot, and the Union Station Transportation Center as of December 31, 2017.  She stated that the Special Revenue Fund’s actual number is 10% or $1.4 million under the budget.  This is primarily due to less overall activity during the first six months than was budgeted for certain programs such as Vehicle Procurement, Insurance Consortium, Enfield Intermodal Center, and the New Britain Livability grant. The numbers were partially offset by unanticipated higher actual spending in the ADA Paratransit program, the new ADA Paratransit Facility, and the Regional Bus Shelter program.   She then stated that the General Fund has yielded a favorable variance of $7,600 in excess of revenues over expenses.  While the actual revenues are almost aligned with the budget, Ms. Vo-Le stated that the District anticipates additional expenses to increase in the General Fund such as employee benefits, professional services, etc…  Ms. Vo-Le noted that the Spruce Street Parking Lot shows an unfavorable variance of 11% or $14,790 in excess of revenues over expenses primarily due to lower actual daily and monthly parking fees than budgeted.  Total revenues of $163,400 was generated during the first six months of fiscal year 2018, which is 12% or $21,800 lower than the first six months of fiscal year 2017.  She said that Union Station shows a favorable variance of 15% or $14,800 in excess of expenditures over revenues primarily as a result of lower actual expenses in janitorial, utility (water), and liability insurance; partially offset by higher actual real estate taxes than anticipated.

Mr. Lord then asked for acceptance of the financial report as presented. Mr. Flynn made a motion for acceptance of the financial report which was seconded by Mr. Gardow.   The motion was passed unanimously 28.58 yea, 0.00 nay and 0.00 abstention.   

Mr. Lord then asked Ms. Shotland to present the ADA report; at which time she stated the following. Twenty-five (25) new replacement buses are in production.  Delivery of these vehicles is expected at the end of May or early June.  148 Roberts Street “punch list” items are winding down. She noted that the District has purchased a scissor lift for Roberts Street in order to make elevated repairs in-house vs. utilizing an outside contractor. A utility cart was also procured for the vehicle maintenance staff to be able to minimize the time of repairs in the yard.

Mr. Lord then asked for Ms. Shotland to present the Operations Report.  She stated that Chango Rosa would like to install (at their cost) a passenger information display terminal for travelers and patrons in the restaurant.  The District also replaced an HVAC unit in the restaurant.  On a separate note we are coordinating efforts with CTDOT to install two new CTRail ticket vending machines (TVMs) in the Transportation Center.  The District is also planning for additional seating in the Transportation Center for the large number of additional riders that are expected to the Station in May. Mr. Lord asked if there will be ticketing for trains inside of the terminal.  Ms. Shotland reported that there will be Ticket Vending Machines in the Transportation Center but there will not be a ticket count.  

Mr. Lord then called upon Ms. Deppe to provide her department’s report.  She stated that the City of New Britain held the bid opening was on for January 9, 2018.  6 bids were submitted, ranging from approx. $7.495 to $8.532 million.  The City is currently working to obtain City Council approval and to enter into an agreement with the lowest bidder.  The Town of Enfield is continuing to work towards the acquisition of 5 parcels owned by Eversource Energy for the Enfield Transit Center project. Negotiations have continued with Eversource Energy to acquire and remediate the former Connecticut Light & Power turbine plant site on the Connecticut River. This quarter the Town signed a contract with TRC Solutions of Windsor CT to perform ESA Phase II and Hazardous Material assessment work. The work will determine the extent of contamination on site and provide cost estimates for remediation. The work is being funded through a State Brownfield Grant from the Department of Economic and Community Development. The assessment is expected to be completed by early spring 2018.  Next she gave an update on the Brownstone Repairs.  The contractor, Capasso Restoration has been working with Architects Simpson, Gumpertz and Heger on submittals to order all of the necessary materials for the Brownstone Restoration project.  Work will begin in April or as soon as weather permits.  Since the award for this project was well under the project budget, SGH is working to develop specs, drawings and bid documents for the District to go out to bid again to include additional phases in this project.  Mr. Quintero inquired about the scope of work for the project. Ms. Deppe responded that it is a restoration project which includes brownstone repair and replacement, crack repair, mortar, removal of the greenery, cleaning stone, etc…  Ms. Deppe went on to discuss procurement projects within the District.  The department has been busy working on a number of contract extensions as well as procuring a number of new contracts including some of the following: Drug and Alcohol Testing; Employee Assistance Program (EAP) and Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) services for the Statewide Drug and Alcohol Testing Program Consortium; HVAC and Security Camera Preventive Maintenance for Roberts Street; Parking Lot Equipment and Security Services for Union Station, and the Transit Advertising (bus wraps).   In regard to finalizing outstanding issues in relation to Bushnell Park North, the wall and the landscaping still remain open.  There are a few minor punch list items as well. All of which are expected to be completed this spring.  Repairs to the damaged bollards and steps at Union Place have been completed.  The District, along with the City of Hartford and iQuilt, were recently honored with a Merit Award for from the American Society of Landscape Architecture for the Bushnell Park North Project.   Ms. Deppe also discussed the Transit Asset Management requirement. In July 2016 the FTA issued a final rule which requires transit agencies to develop and implement transit asset management (TAM) plans. The purpose is to assist transit agencies in operating their systems efficiently.  TAM plans must include an asset inventory, condition assessments of inventoried assets, and a prioritized list of investments to improve the state of good repair of their capital assets.  Plans must be completed by October 2018.  The District has been participating webinars and meetings with CTDOT to learn more about this and to begin developing the TAM.  She ended her report by noting that the District is in the process of contracting with an A&E firm to develop the drawings, specifications and bid forms for the canopy restoration project at Union Station.  CTDOT has approved this project and the District hopes to go out to bid this spring in hopes of completing the work by the fall of 2018. Ms. Cassidy asked if the canopy project will include replacing the drainage and the staff confirmed that would.

Mr. Lord then called upon Ms. Shotland to provide her Administrative report.  She stated the following:

  • Facilitated the initial meeting for Transit CEOs to discuss relevant issues to all of us. These meetings will be held regularly in the future.
  • Was asked to be a member of Senator Christopher Murphy’s Transportation Advisory Board along with others from varying modes of transportation to discuss important topics to push forward in the U.S. Senate.  We are tasked with discussing legislative ideas, as well as next year’s budget process, and programs that need advocating for in regard to the budget or challenges that need more focus and funding.
  • In the final stages of renegotiating the Subway lease.
  • Finalizing an amended agreement with CTDOT regarding the placement of equipment for CTRail.
  • State budget crisis has created a need for public hearing which include proposed fare hearings.

Mr. Quintero asked when taxes go into effect will the money collected go directly into the special transportation fund.  Ms. Shotland acknowledged that it is suppose to go into the Special Transportation Fund. Mr. Lockwood asked is the station planning on doing anything for the grand opening of the rail service He also asked if the District is planning any marketing for the parking lot once the service opens. Ms. Shotland reported that the station will not host a grand opening as it is the CTDOT’s service. She did agree that the District can look into marketing for the parking lot and researching special rates for the expected increase in parkers beginning in May.  

Mr. Lord then called upon Ms. Jennifer Cassidy to provide the CRCOG Transportation Committee report.  Issues on the agenda for January 8th included discussion on the draft for the CTDOT Long Range Transportation Plan which included strategies and actions for addressing transportation issues and needs in CT.  The public comment period closed on February 1st. A final plan will be published in the spring of 2018.  The other item of interest on the agenda was in regard to CTfastrak which has had more than 7.5 million riders in less than three years of operation.   

Mr. Lord called for new business. He reminded the attendees that the next Board of Directors Meeting will be held on Thursday, March 15, 2018.  There being no further business brought before the Board, Mr. Raney moved that the meeting be adjourned. Upon seconding by Mr. Quintero the motion passed by a unanimous vote of 28.58 yea, 0.00 nay, and 0.00 abstention.  The Regular Meeting was adjourned at 7:41 p.m. 







Respectfully submitted,

James McCavanagh/Secretary

Draft : 02/9/18