Even With Big Salaries, Metro Can’t Fill Its Jobs

Luke Rosiak, Washington Times, March 27, 2012

The mechanics tasked with maintaining the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority’s chronically broken escalators start at $81,000 a year. Bus driver pay goes as high as $114,000 for anyone with a driver’s license and a GED.

Yet despite an economy that has left people from all walks of life looking for work, Metro says it can’t find qualified job applicants.

The transit system’s failure to meet its personnel needs was largely responsible for the $88 million in overtime it paid in 2010. The overtime paid to some station managers exceeded their base salaries, and maintenance workers made as much as $100,000 in overtime alone, according to an analysis of the most recent records officials would provide.

A personnel system that appears broken will be put to the test like never before as the agency prepares to add 1,000 new positions, an expansion coinciding with the opening of the Silver Line to Washington Dulles International Airport, that will push its total employee ranks past 12,000.

With nearly 1 in 10 existing positions unfilled and an additional 5 percent turnover each year, the chance of successfully filling all the new positions is virtually nil, said Tom Downs, a member of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority Board.


Current Metro policies, The Washington Times reported Tuesday, have led to a workforce whose largest job category is 97 percent black and has only 70 white women out of 10,000 non-executive workers, and where disciplinary and pay records document that some workers get away with chronic malfeasance while others are disciplined frivolously or harassed.


Only 1 in 4 applicants passes Metro’s three-part test with reading, behavior and customer-service sections. But a statistical analysis of test results shows curious results.

In one class, nearly everyone who could read, according to the literacy test, was marked down as failing a “behavior assessment.” Everyone deemed tops on behavior, meanwhile, failed the other segments.

Metro officials said the tests were multiple choice and that the behavior test is designed to fail about half of the applicants.

“I don’t think the test is rocket science,” said Jackie L. Jeter, president of the union that represents most Metro workers.\


To explain the 1.4 percent of operators who are Hispanic and 1.5 percent who are white, Mrs. Jeter speculated that such people must not be applying. (The union is not responsible for hiring.)

Mr. Downs said, for the same reasons Mrs. Jeter noted, that is false.

“Of course they are. These are good-paying jobs with retirement and health care,” Mr. Downs said.

Metro declined to provide demographic information on applicants.


The average Metro worker had a $60,000 salary, which went up to $69,000 including overtime, about the same as D.C. schoolteachers.

The 144 people who try to keep Metro’s escalators in service make $80,000 to $100,000, after paid training at a $60,000 to $80,000 per year rate. The 488 station managers inside glass kiosks at rail stations—occasionally fielding questions, often with a bare minimum of information, riders say—have base salaries in the high $50,000s, but in reality, most take home closer to $70,000. Including overtime, 20 station managers made in the six figures.



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  • Nonsense.  They’re not having trouble finding qualified applicants, they’re having trouble finding “qualified” BLACK applicants.  If they wanted to hire non-blacks, especially whites, they could find plenty of qualified people.

  • frmore

    Whites build it. Congoloids haitianize it.

  • $114,000 for anyone with a driver’s license and a GED and they cant fill the spots.  I guess its because they are competeing with Harvard for the same blacks.

  • I think that Metro is trying to do all it can to prevent Blacks from failing their basic test. It would make them look bad if whites tested and had higher scores and better yet, were veterans and were eligible for veteran’s preference that would raise the score by 5 or 10 points depending on whether the veteran was disabled or not.

  • JackKrak

    I reckon that a similar organization that had more than about a 60% white workforce would face a Congressional investigation for its hiring practices.

    It would also be well-run and operate on budget.

  • The_Bobster

    On a similar note:


    They Were Afraid To Sit In The Front Of The Bus
    By James Fulford on March 28, 2012 at 8:23pm

    Paul Kersey:

    “We already know that more than 100 bus drivers in the Detroit Department of Transportation (DDOT) refused to work because “they were scared for their lives” after numerous attacks on the Black drivers by young Black people. Instead of driving their routes, they stayed in the Rosa Parks Transit Center (not to be confused with the Rosa Parks Hempstead Transit Center in Long Island) without one employee realizing the irony of the situation.

    “The irony is that they were afraid to sit in the front of the bus.

  • KenelmDigby

    Here is the proof that a black-run society simply cannot function.
    If the inducement and incitement of mega-salaries for very mundane work is unable to correct the situation (as classical economics dictates), then put simply, no force on Earth can make it function.

  • chuck_2011

    always the same problems…black people too stupid or too lazy to qualify for a job….time to lower the standards to let them in….

  • IstvanIN

    The communists were proud of the subway they built.  Blacks are only proud of their own vulgarity and since they never build anything, well……

  • It already is ….

  • “Metro declined to provide demographic information on applicants.”

    They can get away with this reponse considering how 97% (this is their definition of “diverse”) of the work force is black. That same response with a 97% White work force would result in a knock at the door from The Office of Civil Rights(CIVR) as well as lawsuits from “aggrieved ” minorities!

  • So in other words, that elevator mechanic making six figures only works 6 months out of the year. No telling what he does for the other six months….

  • Kurt Plummer

    What’s the cost of living in WDC?  What’s the status of these people’s savings accounts?  How many kids do they have and how many of those kids have college savings accounts?

    You see, for a white in a ‘working’ economy (one where the interest rates are not near-zero) 10 years of 100,000 dollars a year is a paid off house in a decent neighborhood and either all debts cleared away with the kids lifeplans in hand or a viable retirement schedule near to (400,000?) fruition.

    BY ALL MEANS!  Get rid of whites to an early, easy, (40-50) gentility of ‘independent means’ this way!

    Then you can hire all the blacks you want to fill the jobs we leave to them.  Of course we will still have to rely on -our- (happy to know they are wanted as supported) children for the likes of medical care and anything requiring a 115 or better IQ.

    But hey, if the blacks want WDC or Chicago or Detroit.  _Let them have it_.