CATS introduces expansion at public input meeting

BAKER, LA (WAFB) - Capital Area Transit System interim CEO Bob Mirabito addressed a small crowd in Baker Monday night to unveil a plan to expand bus routes in the Baton Rouge area, including Baker.

Mirabito adds the expansion will also equal the hiring of 70 additional full-time drivers by a target date of March 31, 2014.

"We are upgrading a transit system that's not met the needs of the public so now we are putting in an additional eight routes, we have some express and limited stops," said Mirabito. Once we get that I can start focusing in on what a CEO does and that is to provide a vision for the organization."

That vision is still in need of an overhaul according to some members of the public in attendance who suggest the organization try get more tax payers back on board in addition to the regular riders.

"They have done it among people riding the buses but other people who are paying the taxes don't get to see those benefits because they never ride the bus and the reason they never do because it takes all day where you go," said Travis Joseph.

Mirabito says programs like Touchdown Express which has used CATS buses to transport about 3,000 fans to and from LSU games and a new promotional campaign are making a difference and that it ultimately comes down to regaining trust.

"By introducing accountability, keeping CATS and its people responsible for the taxpayer dollars and plus providing better customer service I think we'll win," said Mirabito.

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