POSTED: Monday, April 22, 2013 - 5:21pm
UPDATED: Monday, April 22, 2013 - 5:53pm
BATON ROUGE, LA (NBC33) — Brain Marshall, the CEO of the Capital Area Transit System, has resigned.
Marshall has been the CEO since 2009. In a phone call with NBC33 News, Marshall said he's made the right decision and still believes CATS can improve their system.
For the past several years the system has been plagued with problems. Even though voters approved a tax increase to help the system, no major improvements have been made.
Marshall said he would still be available to advise the board.
Below is a full statement from Marshall:
For several years the Capital Area Transit System has been financially, organizationally and managerially neglected. There have been inefficient routes and difficult union agreements. We also saw poor equipment and no performance metrics. In the last 3 years significantly positive changes have occurred. We established the very popular service to LSU football games and developed Trolley Rouge (a 100 percent privately funded route) We've identified and communicated to the public the need to change from the antiquated and inefficient hub and spoke route structure to a more useable grid system. This which yielded a successful tax election. We did so by making the case for dedicated funding. We also secured the first ever competitive grant ($24 million – State of Good Repair). My team secured national attention for our technology innovation – our audio and video surveillance system and secured the 2014 SWTA convention in Baton Rouge.
Though the tax passed last year, we have continued to face several challenges. However, we have kept our eye on building a sustainable system that Baton Rouge would be proud of. The fact remains that we are on-target to deliver a sustainable system that will attract choice riders.
Through it all, I have been dedicated to building a sustainable system that the city deserves. Not once was there overspending or deficiencies in our audits. Our Comprehensive Operations Analysis was very favorable and our plan for the future was doable and on-track. In spite of a contract, I did not accept a pay increase until the company was in the financial position to provide one to all employees. Without prompting, I requested that my contract not be renegotiated until after the tax election and after the collective bargaining agreement was complete. Again, I will state that my only interest is to build a SUSTAINABLE system that would be delivered in 2014 and the facts again prove that our major endeavors are on target. It is my opinion, that the current environment is not conducive to building a sustainable system. Therefore, effective immediately, I resign as the CEO of the Capital Area Transit System. I will remain available to advise management and the board.
I thank the board and all CATS employees for your participation in improving the system. I also thank Mayor Holden and the Metro Council for having the vision to continue to improve Baton Rouge. CATS management deserves much credit for working with half of the administrative employees as national average yet moving the system forward.
I wish the Capital Area Transit System and Baton Rouge the best of luck.