Chicago Sun-Times

CTA Top Salaries

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No "Ride" today -- instead we've got a look at CTA top management salaries over the past three years. See the story here.

In defense of executive salaries, Ron Huberman pointed out in an interview that the CTA president, whose salary sets the bar for salaries through the organization, makes less than the heads of 25 other major transit agencies. They include New York, Dallas, Denver, Miami, San Jose, San Mateo (CA) and Las Vegas.

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7 Comments

Huh? I don't understand your analogy at all and I was only pointing out a misinterpretation of the news article, not criticizing or defending the salaries themselves. But sorry if I offended you and I do ride the CTA every day (by choice; I also own a car).

Joe, you remind of the guy in the commericial trying to purchase an airplane ticket. The lady nicely tells him a very reasonable price. He reaches for his wallet to pay and as she turns to get the ticket, low and behold the real Ticket Agent comes out and demands GIMMME, GIMME, GIMME, GIMME, GIMME, GIMME, GIMME, GIMME, GIMME ALL OF YOUR DAMN MONEY to ride the plane!

The customer looks perplex, frighten and can't even think to simply just RUN AWAY! The fake NICE Ticket Agent returns and looks at him and he whimpers but, but, but, but you said this price.

That is what you remind me of!

If I could afford a car, insurance, gas, maintenance, and a darn place to park it, I wouldn't say one word about CTA and its executive pay!! Considering I have to ride it and my gut feeling tells me you don't, leave those who do to our rants and go take a plane ride with that lovely Ticket Agent I just mentioned.

Regarding the comments below, I read the article again and I don't see where anyone expresses the opinion that these CTA employees aren't making enough money. The comments by Huberman and Brown seem to say that some employees are taking home less than before due to an increase in deductions and that comparable employees are earning more in some other cities. Those comments seem to be an attempt to justify the salaries of those officials listed in the article, not "whining" about them not being paid enough.

Huberman's statement: You need to take into account that those bosses had to pay more in taxes and also had to start paying 6 percent into pension and health accounts, Huberman says. Then, he says, the amount of money paid to CTA management employees who stayed at the same job actually went down last year.

My retort: I take into account every day I ride the CTA how terrible the conditions of the buses and trains are. I can RAISE my voice loud as I want, but it doesn't STOP ME FROM HAVING TO PAY HIGHER FARE INCREASES, regardless of the lack of service and insolent employees. Don't try to explain to me people are paying six percent into their penson and health accounts. I DON'T HAVE EITHER! I have to use the County Hospital which I know neither individuals making over a $100K will visit any time soon. At least they have a pension, I could play dumb and ask what is that? But since I long for a job with one, I will not!

Huberman's statement: "They're making less money," says Huberman, who was picked by Mayor Daley to replace Frank Kruesi at the helm of the transit agency in May 2007.

My retort: Guess what? EVERYBODY IS MAKING LESS MONEY! And some have lost their jobs or working less hours while the transit fares have increased! So who is really hurting Mr. Hubrisman? I see you got a new promotion and a better salary to boot, just recently! Therefore you shouldn't have ONE WORD to say, but your braggadociosness reeks terribly of the scent of cronyism!

Pays well being the Mayor's yes man, though previously not necessarily competent and no prior work background in neither transportation or education doesn't it?

Huberman's statements: He defends the 2008 raises as deserved and necessary to hold on to talent, especially since the CTA pays less to executives than other U.S. transit agencies do.

My retort: Until we have a world class mass transit system, why in the hell are any managers making over $100K a year? The more these individuals manage CTA the more routes and stations are closed and transportations hours are cutback on the system. Is this where the raises are made up by reducing the service to the public for these individuals I asked quizzically?

Ms. Brown statement" CTA Chairwoman Carole Brown also defends the executives' salaries and raises.

"Sometimes, people forget we're a billion-dollar agency that moves 2 million people a day on an aging system," says Brown. "To attract the talent we need to attract, I'm actually surprised we don't have more people making higher salaries."

My retort: You brought home the most important issue about the CTA It is an AGING SYSTEM - riding a dinosaur would be better at this point - therefore why is the money not put to use fixing it and quit complaining to the public the fare needs to be increased with DOOMSDAY scenarios and place funding to repair CTA! Frankly, I WOULD BE surprised that more people are making larger salaries! WHERE IN THE HELL YOU GOING TO GET THE MONEY? Eventually people will ride bikes, scooters, share rides or walk to work that is if they have jobs in this terrible economy!! They can't afford to ride CTA!

Ms. Brown you claim you want to attract talent, but I don't comprehend what is wrong with the talent you have! If they are not good at their jobs, fire them and TRUST ME, I KNOW THERE WILL BE PLENTY OF PEOPLE SENDING RESUMES TO BE INTERVIEW FOR THEIR POSITIONS. And at a much lower salary!!

Maybe you need to leave as well, considering you don't think you make enough money. Don't WHINE to me it is a billion dollar a year business but run it as though its on a shoe string budget, yet pay executives top dollar while consistently ruining the CTA!

The arrogance and inanity of the PLAY TO PAY Political Appointments in Chicago, is greatly under-appreciated by other cities. Especially when the appointees can make statements of "BUT WE DON'T MAKE ENOUGH MONEY!" but the salaries are over $100K per year!

Paula, Mary has a link to the article right in her blog item about it.

Looking at those Cta salaries published in the Chicago Suntimes is this why I pay such a high fare for these people salaries? What do they actually do, drive a bus or a train? If this is what they make why do the employees who drive the equipment make? I’m standing in minus twenty degree weather snow blowing in my face waiting for a bus and then a train when the Cta has no equipment. I thought this was a transportation company to serve the riding public. Who monitors these wages that some earn close to the President of the United States earns. This is a political outrage!

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This page contains a single entry by Mary Wisniewski published on February 2, 2009 2:13 PM.

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