T report recommends management, oversight changes

Backs a board to directly oversee agency beyond 2020

THE MBTA SHOULD REVAMP its top management structure and a board should continue to provide direct oversight of T operations after 2020, according to a draft strategic report issued on Monday by the T’s Fiscal and Management Control Board.

The T’s current management structure calls for two coequal leaders  – a general manager and a chief administrative officer. The former general manager stepped down in June 2016 and the chief administrator, Brian Shortsleeve, has since then been doing both jobs.

In its strategic report, the T’s oversight board said the agency should be run by a single CEO/general manager along with two aides – a deputy general manager for administration and another deputy for infrastructure and operations. State officials are currently looking to hire at new CEO/general manager.

The Fiscal and Management Control Board was scheduled to go out of existence next year, but has agreed in principle with a request from Gov. Charlie Baker to stay on until June 2020. The strategic plan said the board in 2020 should be replaced with a new and permanent board with direct oversight of the T. In past years, the T had been managed by a larger board overseeing all of the state transportation bureaucracy.

“The complexity of the MBTA’s operations requires a board dedicated to providing oversight and policy direction,” the strategic plan said. “While the final configuration of such a board will need to be determined by future legislation, the FMCB strongly recommends the continuation of a separate board for the MBTA.”

  • Mhmjjj2012

    Who would be on the board and how would they be chosen? It’s like the more I know about the MBTA…the more I know how little I know about the MBTA.

  • tim kert

    I’ve been saying for the past 20 years it’s not the employees at the T that are the problem, it’s the old infrastructure the old equipment and trains and buses. The green line from lechemere to Kenmore people don’t realize that there’s so many sharp curves with switches and crossovers in the middle of them which are constantly taking a beating and wear out. Government center also has the same problems the Government center loop wears-out very quickly along with the switches and maintaining them is difficult because of that wear and tear. I’m sure everyone has heard the squealing(very loud screeching)when trains are pulling into Government center? That’s the tight curves throughout the T’s over 100 year old system. The trains pulling into the station are only going to about 3 to 6 miles per hour, can you imagine the wear and tear the track is getting other locations where the trains area moving regular speed? When they built the infrastructure over a hundred years ago it was fine for what they used back then with all the sharp curves and tight radius. You’d have to shut the T down and tear down the walls of the tunnels to straighten the curves and loops out to prevent as much wear and tear on the switches and curves it’s a huge undertaking. So, it’s not the employees it’s a combination of things that plague the T. The infrastructure is a huge part of it. If that is resolved new equipment and new trains and buses will help the T run more efficiently. For years the media and people would blame the workers/employees, if they knew the whole story the history of the T’s infrastructure the way it was built over 100 years ago they would know it’s not the employees at all. Of course the General manager is going to blame the employees when problems occur but if they had upgraded the infrastructure 30 years ago they wouldn’t have all the problems they do today. I’m sure they knew that back then but they would keep putting bandaids on it instead of giving it the operation that it needed. It needs a massive operation today, or should I say, yesterday.