Metro overtime exceeds budget; workers receive bonuses

Metro’s overtime costs for the second half of last year were $12.7 million more than the transit agency had budgeted, according to a report.

Metro staff is expected on Thursday to present to the board’s finance and administration committee an update on its nearly $2 billion annual operating budget. The report comes as the board begins preparing for the 2014 fiscal budget cycle.


(Linda Davidson – The Washington Post)

According to the recent report, Metro’s overtime costs were $42.7 million from July to December, compared to the $30 million the transit agency had budgeted for that period.

Metro’s labor costs, including overtime, for those six months were $548.1 million, compared to the $555.9 million the transit agency had budgeted.

According to the report, Metro said its overtime was caused by  maintenance on its 2000, 3000, and 5000 series rail cars, overhauls of its heating and air conditioning systems on trains, repairing doors on trains that are at their midlife of working and maintaining brake systems. The report also said overtime was due to vacancies at the agency, employees having to cover when others are on leave and special events when extra employees are needed.

D.C. Councilman Muriel Bowser is expected to hold an oversight hearing on Friday on the transit agency. In documents she asked for before the hearing, Metro reported that some of its workers received a total of more than $500,000 in bonuses for their safety records over the last two years. The list of workers did not include names of who received the safety award bonuses. It included employees who worked as bus drivers, train operators, administrative assistants, electrical repairman, a lawyer, superintendents and mechanics.

 

 

Dana Hedgpeth is the Washington Post’s lead reporter in covering the Metro rail and bus systems in the D.C. region and the Washington Metropolitan Transit Authority (WMATA) that runs them.
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Dana Hedgpeth | March 13, 2013