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Task Force Gets To Work To Fix Illinois Public Transit Problems

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John Cody John Cody
John Cody is a veteran reporter for Newsradio 780.
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CHICAGO (CBS) — Governor Pat Quinn’s transit task force has morphed from checking up on Metra to designing a transit system that’s the envy of the world after a few local issues are settled. John Cody reports on day one.

Governor Quinn says the RTA is the world’s third largest public transit system but with the real specific problems.

“There is a lack of oversight, a lack of accountability and inability to remove directors when needed. There is a lack of ethical standards that are applied and really in the case of Metra a complete paralysis of governance,” said Quinn.

Quinn said grid lock is never good, as he tasked the task force with reorganizing Illinois transit and studying ridership enhancements like WiFi, universal fares and fuel-efficient buses.

Former U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, a task force member, said he’d never tell another prosecutor who to investigate but did says he could understand why Metra Riders might feel their interests may not come first.

And State Representative Al Riley, not a task force member, spoke during the meeting to recommend that his south suburban constituents – who have the longest commutes to work – should get a rail system to help them get to their jobs.

The task force issues its first report next month, final report January first.

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