April 28, 2015
Today, RTS CEO Bill Carpenter was joined by RGRTA Board of Commissioners Chairman Jim Redmond to announce that RTS will discontinue its partnership with the Rochester City School District when the current contract expires in June 2015.
Carpenter said, “As our region’s public transportation provider, our first priority is to fulfill our mission to provide safe, reliable, and convenient public transit. Several student-related incidents at the RTS Transit Center have fostered a perception among customers of all ages and across our community that the RTS Transit Center is not a safe environment. Because of our concern for the well-being of everyone we serve, RTS will no longer provide transportation to the Rochester City School District after the current school year ends in June. Our current model, customized to serve large volumes of students, no longer works. RTS cannot sustain the operational, safety, financial, customer service and reputational impacts resulting from these incidents.”
“The RTS Transit Center is not the cause of conflict among our youth,” Carpenter added, “but it has become a popular destination for the few, disruptive individuals who choose to engage in poor behaviors. We will continue to welcome our community’s youth as RTS customers so that they can get to work, extra-curricular activities, volunteer work, and other community destinations.”
The decision will result in the elimination of 144 jobs. It is expected that the number of layoffs can be minimized through attrition and an early retirement program.
As a major community investment, the RTS Transit Center has enabled RTS to transition to a more modern, efficient public transit system that serves more than 18 million customers. “We need to get RTS back on track to achieve what it was designed for and what it will enable us to do to serve current and future generations of public transit customers,” Carpenter said.
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