Riders March Against Latest Round Of Port Authority Cuts

PORT VUE (KDKA) — With the possibility of another round of service cuts looming, bus riders took to the streets in Port Vue Borough Saturday morning for a “Save our Bus” rally.

Bus riders say they can’t afford to lose any more service, but the Port Authority says they have to save as much as they can.

The Port Authority is cutting 29 bus routes next month and Port Vue is just one area that will be hit hard. There’s only one bus out of the community and that will leave many feeling stranded.

“It’s gone beyond an inconvenience,” said Carol Kast, a Port Vue resident. “It’s a hardship now because there are no options.”

“They cannot cut bus service up here,” added Darlene Gerber, a Port Authority bus driver. “People just don’t understand.”

The protesters marched along the route they would have to walk if bus service was cut from the area.

They took the more than one mile walk to the McKeesport Transportation Center where they were met by even more protestors who will also be affected by the cuts, including some Port Authority workers who would be faced with lay offs.

Two-hundred and seventy agency jobs are set to be eliminated and 180 workers are scheduled to be laid off. On top of the bus routes that are being eliminated, more than three dozen lines will see service reductions.

“If you want to declare war, here we are, declare war,” said Elizabeth Miller, a Port Authority bus driver, “but no one man has ever won a war.”

“Three components to a strong community are good jobs, good housing and good transportation,” said Mayor Brien Hranics, of the Borough of Port Vue. “It seems to me that the Port Authority says to us, it’s okay to have a house, it’s okay to have a good job, but good luck getting from one to the other.”

The Port Authority says it doesn’t have many options left with a huge budget crisis, but some think the money is there and there are other solutions.

Some elected officials are calling for a moratorium on the cuts so there can be closer look at the Port Authority’s finances and another option.

RELATED LINKS:
Port Vue Borough
Port Authority
Port Authority, Union Remain At Odds Over Possible Cuts
More Port Authority News
More Local News

Comments

One Comment

  1. Dan says:

    Maybe you can tell the people of Homewood that this was a “racial thing” . they always seem to fall for that one, and march around like the brainless idiots they are. God knows we pay more to take care of them than we do for the BUS !

    1. Queenie says:

      Rick, Gov. Walker is having a hard time getting his unions to pay for anything and now we may want to consider firing our unions and taking back our busses.

      1. Holly says:

        Do you read? The unions agreed to all the pay cuts that Gov. Walker asked for. The issue is that the Governor wants to take away all collective bargaining rights. The unions already accepted the Governor’s terms as far as pay cuts, paying for more of their insurance, etc. This is all about silencing their voices now. Read a newspaper.

  2. Norm says:

    Why not make 279 and 376 in Pittsburgh toll roads and leave I 80 alone?

    1. Fenix1186 says:

      Yeah, why not make every road a toll road? Those are the only highways in and out of Pittsburgh. That is the dumbest thing I have ever heard.

  3. Shockly says:

    Nothing wrong with walking a couple miles a day. Sounds heartless to some but these are tough times.

    1. TOM says:

      shockly tell that to my 70 year old father that walks a couple of miles to catch a bus that used to come right in front of his house. he has bad hips, bad knee’s high blood pressure and an enlarged heart and i’d bet you he’d hand you your a$$

      1. Shockly says:

        I don’t believe my comment warranted your overrection there Tommyboy, as I stated times are tough. During these hard times people will have to depend on family and friends to make it through. Get off your high horse and face reality.

      2. Shrink Port Authority says:

        Then Tommy…….you’re his son, pick him up and take him where he needs to go. Families are still allowed to care for their senior members. Our tax dollars cannot sustain these under used bus routes. And as far as I’m concerned if there are any government funds subsidizing Port Authority, then Port Authority is a failing entity and should be dismantled and privatized.

  4. TOM says:

    Degenerates because they are trying to get to work ? your the degenerate. i’d love to see kdka put you on unemployment.

  5. greg says:

    what ever happened to driving a car?

    1. Try Driving A Bus for a WEEK says:

      Hey Greg,, EVERYONE cant afford a car that’s why they need bus’s to help the one’s that doent have a car.. WOW alot of idiot’s here

      1. TOM says:

        These OXYMORON”S have never been on a bus to actually see the physically disabled and mentally challenged (who can’t defend their ride on here) who depend on public transportation or the little old lady that could be their grand mother or mother who can’t drive anymore or can’t afford to drive because of the measely social security check that she gets. These self selfish ignorant moron’s only care about themselves i can only pray that one day they too will have to depend on public transportation

      2. Fenix1186 says:

        You can lease or buy a cheap car for the amount you pay for a monthly bus pas or pay for bus tickets 2 or more times a day.

      3. TOM says:

        FENIX1186 alot of passengers are living in poverty and can’t even afford a cheap car or auto insurance or vehicle maintenance or even their next meal. i see them on a daily basis and my heart bleeds for them. we simply can not stand these folks, we have to do the right thing.

      4. MaryMo says:

        Greg and Fenix – car’s aren’t always easy to have in the city. If you actually live IN the city (and not out where there are driveways and space between neighbors like out in the suburbs where you probably live and own a gas-guzzler) you have to deal with public parking in the street. Also, why waste money on gas if you live/work with easy bus access? Cars aren’t always the answer and instead of saying dumb stuff like “why don’t you get a car” how about “why don’t you try to live without one.” Pittsburgh was not built for cars. It was built around its public transportation. Why do you think most streets aren’t wide enough for two cars to fit, because they used trolley’s, busses, and inclines to get everywhere back in the day. If more people went back to public transit, then we wouldn’t have such horrible traffic.

  6. Rick says:

    Where does it end? Every couple of years PAT workers say ” Give us more money or we go on strike and you are all stuck” Then after paying thoses bloated salaries PAT Admin. says “we are out of money. Bail us out or you are all stuck”. Im sorry but these are tough times. To be paying these drivers and mechanics around $60,000 a year not including OT is unbelievable. They support a fifty man Police Force. For what??? And every year they get bailed out with tax payer money. They have to get the spending under control and stop laying down to the union.

    1. Sammy says:

      Rick – and you’re getting these numbers and your info from where? I’d suggest you get your facts straight before you make comments of the top of your head.

      1. Rick says:

        Sammy – They are not from the top of my head. Look them up for yourself. I have several freinds who drive and do maintenance for Port Authority. They tell me what they make. It was also put out on the news when they were in the last contract. Face it……..they are over paid and demand more money every contract when there are people out here who have been on pay freezes for years.

  7. Steve says:

    If the Port Authority needs to save money, cut the salaries of the executives maknig the decisions to cut service. I’m sure that the money they save paying these incompetent idiots would go a long way to keeping service in the areas that are affected.

    1. Zoeyzotron says:

      STEVE- PAT CEO makes like 190k a year, cutting his salary is a pimple on the ass of an elephant. That sai, cut it but the same must be done to the entire organization. Union wages, benefits, and PENSIONS are to blame. It’s probably to late any way, PAT has aboy a 10% chance of making it.

      1. TOM says:

        I heard Steven Bland’s new contract is for $200,000 is for with 2.5 % increases every fiscal year, Does anyone know when the board of director’s votes on that ? Maybe Marty Griffin will be there to cover the story oh wait Steve Bland will say that’s a violation of the sunshine act.

      2. GETOVERIT says:

        Because of terms of the Federal Transit Act, any worker displaced by having his/her job outsourced would be entitled to a year’s wages for each year of service (up to six years’ wages) in a severance package. Thus, retirement and attrition offer the only financially viable path to privatization or other outsourcing of service.

        Read more: Five steps to save mass transit – Pittsburgh Tribune-Review http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/opinion/columnists/guests/s_712177.html#ixzz1FCzGlOdo

        HOPE ANY LAYED OFF PAT EMPLOYEE GETS THIS. THERE IS PLANS FOR LEZNER TO START RUNNING ROUTES, MAR 28. LOCAL 85 CONTACT YOUR UNION.

      3. PETE says:

        GREAT, LETS PRIVATIZE THE WHOLE PORT AUTHORITY AND PAY THEM 250,000 TO 300,000 BUYOUTS EACH… THEN THEY CAN TAKE THERE MONEY AND MOVE OUT OF THIS AREA

    2. steve says:

      MARTY, get Jake Haulk of Allegheny Institute to verify this, FTA regulation

  8. Bea says:

    What asinine comments on here. Do you all think that a poor transit system is good for a city? Do you think people will migrate into the city to live, work, etc. when there is no public transportation? Businesses, home buyers will go to the subarbs and surrounding counties. Pittsburgh will be left with nothing but the non-profit hospitals & colleges, bars & the Steelers. The lack of intelligence to look toward a future is astounding. No wonder the city has bled money for years. PATA keeps receiving money, & still can’t function. And the city doesn’t seem to care. How is it such a livable city?

    1. kristy says:

      i totally agree, bea. there’s no way in hell that i’ll ever go into the city again. you either have no public transportation to get there or the parking garage rates are through the roof. thanks for making my decision much easier, pat, to never step foot in downtown again. mark my words – pittsburgh’s going to become even more of a ghost town than it already is. idiots.

  9. Ken says:

    When a company like Mcdonalds has money problems do the stop serving Big Macs? This is exactly what we are doing…cutting our product.How many “suit and tie” people are losing their jobs? When there is one person left in each department THEN and only THEN start cutting service!!!! Port Authority has MORE management than Pittsburgh Railways EVER did.Since 1964 they were called Patransit then it was changed to just Port Authority,hmmm what word is missing? Their job as a company is to get people where they need to go PERIOD!!!! Its time to get back to what they are supposed to do and an audit needs to be done and account for every penny not used to provide service. By the way….how much does it cost for the offices downtown? They still own a building in Manchester right? I bet the rent alone on the downtown building could save at least 4 routes and if people start checking the books there may be even more money wasted that could go to service!!!

    1. Zoeyzotron says:

      KEN – mcDonalds, like any other successful Private NON UNION corporation during difficult economic times would slash expenses, not the product. Expenses would be defined as marketing, IT resources, and LABOR. Let’s face it, labor is easy to replace. PAT will fail because they do not attack the problem…. A fat bloated union work force. Sadly, because the union will not give and PAT will not force the issue, they will all be unemployed as the economy worsens…. I am sure 4$ gas will help PATs financial wows….

  10. Doctor No says:

    Bus drivers sitting on their butts making 80 grand a year is the cause of the rate increases!

    1. Try Driving A Bus for a WEEK says:

      Hey Doctor No.. Im a Driver for the Port Authority and we dont make 80 grand a year .. If we work over time and i mean alot of over time you might get there ,,Know your’e FACTS before you run your’e mouth

      1. TRY BEING A PASSENGER FOR A WEEK says:

        whiner, you dont even drive the bus when you are supposed to drive it. you should not get overtime. youre overpaid, you work overtime only when it is convenient for you. like you dont work during the steeler games do ya? pathetic. they are building a tunnel under the water and you wont even drive OVER the water ya lazy thugs. you get what you give…..you give your customers a hard time, you get a hard time. you earned. it. everybody knows the drivers are thugs. hey, you just kicked the life out of a person who was passed out on your bus. and you are bold enough to do it with a camera rolling…..you fear NO RETRIBUTION, because you can kick a person half to death and get away with it. YOU SHOULD ALL RELY ON PORT AUTHORITY TO GET TO WORK. YOU WILL SEE HOW USELESS YOU ALL ARE……..MAKE IT MANDATORY THE DRIVERS GET TO WORK USING PORT AUTHORITY. WHAT A JOKE YOU ALL ARE. YOU BRING ON YOUR OWN PROBLEMS.

    2. TOM says:

      Doctor No you obviously believe everything you read in the newspaper because as we all know what the media says is the gospel. Perhaps you’ve been listening to Marty Griffin too much. Bus operators at the top rate make approximately $42,000 a year. many are frozen at lower pay rates because of a contract signed in the 90’s. those that are making $80,000 or even more are taking all the overtime that they can get for various reason’s. With that being said many have no social life, family life or hobbies because they work. If it wasn’t for the men and women many run’s would be out of service and many people would be standed. so for that they deserve kudo’s. i don’t condemn anyone for working and earning a paycheck. these men and women are the one’s buying and stimulating our local economy.

      1. you could never handle taking the bus for a week says:

        you do not earn straight time, why should you get overtime? you have endless excuses……just doing your mindless job. all that stopping and going is just toooooo much to ask. pat is going to fail, its going to collapse. you should keep doing what youre doing. its causing the end. you bus drivers will be just like the rest of us…yes the passengers you hate sooo much. you tooooo will be looking for a job and hoping some kinda nasty bus with a nastier driver shows up to drive you at least through a tunnel. the drivers have caused this mess. the drivers need to work on fixing it. oh thats right, you all have excuses. youre not interested in fixing anything, its easier to blame everyone else. then you dont have to THINK, YOU ARE NOT PAID TO THINK HUH?

      2. Zoeyzotron says:

        TOM – Thats a load of BS. Published in the Post Gazette… 2010 1 Driver earned 131,000, 5 drivers over 105,000 and 50 drivers over 80,000. Even at 42000, lets factor in benefits and the damn PENSION… Guess what my friend, that is damn good money in Pittsburgh for driving a bus. Obviously it is far to much, which is why PAT is bankrupt and looking for another TAXPAYER HANDOUT.

    3. tom says:

      hey doc, what do you do and how much do you make?

      1. HEY DOC says:

        you got a ged and been driving the bus for 30 years. you can get away with beating a unconcious passenger instead of calling pat police. you have never had another job. i bet you dont need to take a bus to work, you drive to your garage to work as little as possible.

    4. Try Driving A Bus for a WEEK says:

      Firts of all I dont work overtime.i dont need to.. Wasn’t my idael to build a tunnel.. I drive that bus everywhere i dont have a problem with that.. I dont give my customer’s a hard time.I do my job the way it suppose to be done.. Now for you .. You are wishing you had a union job. That’s why your’e upset. Bet you tried to get hired and they shut you down. Thug’s are people that do harm to peole. driver’s dont harm people.. Now for that drunk guy. Cant tell ya how other driver’s are.. Just remeber you hear one side of a story .Until you hear both then you can comment you. JACK WAGON

  11. xapns says:

    PAT gets $$ from the Lottery to give seniors the free ride and also from universities to give students free rides and from the Pittsburgh Public schools to give kids a free ride. How much $$$ does it need to supply %5 of the residents of Allegheny County bus service what a joke. c u t C U T CUT !!!

    1. Student says:

      Yeah us students pay for that service out of our tuition.

      1. Student 2 says:

        xapns:
        Chatham Pitt and CMU all give port authority MILLIONS of dollars a year for that service out of our tuitions. Its the furthest thing from a free ride as you can get. Get your facts right before commenting on something you are obviously uneducated on.

  12. jj says:

    I knew someone that was a T mechanic for PAT at the south hills maintenance facility. They would drive around at night in a PAT truck and pick up lawn mowers and stuff that people had thrown out for trash pick-up. They would bring them back to the shop and work on them all night to keep or sell. So, we have to pay for PAT workers to mess around all night then pat for their pensions.

    1. TOM says:

      JJ . unfortunately that happens no matter where you work. every employer deals with these issues at some point. corrupt people everywhere, it’s a shame that a few rotten apples spoil the bunch. There are some honest people that work at port authority.

      1. Zoeyzotron says:

        TOM – No it does not. It happens at PAT because this moron is protected by a Union. Another reason why Public Unions need to go

  13. TRider says:

    Ever notice how many riders on the T either don’t pay or go 2 zones with a 1 zone pass? How can you expect a driver to keep track of all the passengers on the train? I certainly don’t blame the operators for that. If they questioned everyone who attempted to get off they would never operate on schedule. How much extra revenue is already there that they simply aren’t collecting because of a bad collection system? I bet it’s enough to save more than one of those jobs they are cutting.

  14. PAUL says:

    I THINK- NO MORE FREE RIDES-.. nO FREE ZONES-NO TRANSFERS, HAVE A DAILY PASS, EVEN SENIORS CAN PUT IN A QUARTER OR 2-COLLEGE STUDENTS AND FACULTY GET WAY MORE OUT OF THE MONEY THEY PAY FOR FREE RIDES-AMAZINGLY I READ THAT PAT WAS THINKING OF FREE RIDES ON THE NEW SUBWAY———NOBODY RIDES FREE!!!! EVEN EMPLOYEES OF PAT CAN PAY .50

    1. Student 2 says:

      Have you even glanced at how much tuition students in this city pay for a college education?! Its at least 10,000 PER SEMESTER for in-state students. All of the universities in this city give port authority millions of dollars a year EACH. Port Authority would be even more in debt without the money given to them from students whose average debt ends up being around at least 50,000. Seeing as we don’t have extra money lying around to pay for a bus pass on top of all of that how do you suggest we get to school? Pittsburgh universities all have excellent programs in the medical field for which Pittsburgh is famous for. If we can’t get to school to get an education in these fields then what do you think is going to happen 10 years from now when there aren’t any new prospective employees. We are an investment in the future of our city.

  15. TOM says:

    Whats the matter Marty ? Are you still made because port authority arrested you for defiant trespass? Is that why you hate the Port Authority so bad ? lol .. you missed your calling , you should have been a comedian because you are funny as hell.

  16. will g says:

    i hate busses, i hope they get rid of them all. but if there is truly a need for this service someone in the private sector will come up with a cost effictive and better way of providing this service and i have no doubt it will work better than it does now.

  17. ben says:

    Yeah, privatize it all

  18. Shockly says:

    He is sleeping on his bus.

  19. joe s says:

    why NOT have ALL PAT WORKERS TAKE A PAY CUT. OH THAT RIGHT THEY ARE SUCH HARD WORKERS I FORGOT IF IT COST 10.00 TO GO TO MONROEVILLE TO PITTSBURGH THEN SO BE IT. QUIT GOING TO THE COUNTY AND HARRISBURG FOR MONEY TAKE A DAM PAY CUT.

  20. joe s says:

    BEN JOE S IS WITH YOU PRIVATIZE IT ALL. I WILL LIKE TO KNOW WHY BUS DRIVERS DO NOT WANT US TO KNOW WHAT THEY MAKE. YOU KNOW WHY BECAUSE THEY MAKE TOO F—-ING MUSH. PRIVATIZE IT ALL.

    1. em says:

      What a bunch of uneducated posters here. If they shut it down and privatize the FTA mandates paying severance pay of up to 6 yrs salary per worker. PAT has hundreds of millions of dollars in assets-paid with federal and local taxes-a private company should not be given these assets to make a profit. Sometimes you got to pay for services and things that dont seem to benefit you, but in one way or another they do.

  21. joe s says:

    RIGHT ON WILL G

  22. tom says:

    how much do u make a year marty?

  23. timmy says:

    WWSD–what would SEPTA do?

  24. RONNY says:

    I MISS FAST EDDIE

  25. PIPPY says:

    SAVE SOME OIL-RIDE A BUS

  26. Marty says:

    I make more than Big Ben, Oprah and the Queen of Sheeba. I’m the closest thing to God that you will ever see. I’m Marty!!!!!!

    1. Try Driving A Bus for a WEEK says:

      Ok let’s be realistic here that’s not the REAL marty ok. I know cause of the Rules and Reg. of the company would not let him post comment’s like that .. So let him talk guy’s

  27. joe s says:

    MAX YOU KNOW WHAT LETS JUST GIVE THE PORT AUTHORITY WHAT EVER THEY WANT AFTER ALL NICK FUTULES THINK WE SHOULD WITHOUT LOOKING AT OTHER WAYS LIKE PRIVATING THE PORT AUTHORITY TO SAVE MONEY REMBER ELECTION TIME FUTULES.

    1. Sam says:

      why should a private company come in to run PAT? They have over a billion dollars in assets. paid with local and federal money. Only way to do this is sell the assets and pay the workers a severance package as mandated in the FTA act. FTA says a severance package is up to six years pay. Then private business can come in and charge a 7-8 fare to the suburbs and the poor can go on unemployment, And in a few yrs the private companies will want bailouts, just like AIg, gm, and all the other private greedy hog companies that got bailouts, so dont say private is better……

  28. Shrink port Authority says:

    Port Authority needs to be dismantled and privatized. Port Authority Police? For what? Busses coming by every 10 minutes? How about come by every hour….and riders better plan their schedules. God forbid if you have to wait 25 minutes for a bus ride. A subsidized bus ride I might add.
    Oh and by the way, let’s build a billion dollar tunnel under the river which has a half dozen bridges within a half mile of the tunnel. That’s outstanding usage of tax dollars. Stupidity is humerous, except when it is my tax dollars being wasted.

  29. Tracy says:

    I don’t hear anything about the drivers or Management willing to take a pay cut to keep the jobs. Funny huh. I am tired of my tax dollars going for buses. I drive to work, I have to buy my gas and upkeep my car,I get no tax dollars for that. IF YOU RIDE THE BUS PAY THE FARE.Nobody bails me out. HOW ABOUT PAT MCMAHON TAKING A PAY CUT. HIS MOUTH IS ALWAYS RUNNING,BUT YOU NEVER HEAR THAT HE IS WILLING TO TAKE A PAY CUT. Bring in another bus company!!!!

  30. db says:

    Get rid of all Public transportation. Did you ever follow a bus in the City. They are to big for the turns. People today are obese. Maybe they should walk a little. Fat America needs excersise

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