The MBTA Rider Oversight Committee (ROC) is a diverse group of riders, advocates, and MBTA employees. We address issues that come to our attention through a variety of means, and provide recommendations to the MBTA that communicate the needs and concerns of all riders. The committee was created in 2004 through an agreement between advocacy groups and the MBTA.
At our monthly public meeting, the ROC invites guests from the MBTA, partner agencies, and the community to present information of interest to the committee; accepts comments from the public on any MBTA-related topic; hears reports from subcommittees and liaisons to other advisory groups; and officially approves its recommendations. Please see our meeting schedule for additional information.
NOTICE: MBTA updating service standards
The MBTA is updating its standards for providing service, and customer input is an important part of this process. Your feedback about MBTA services and the standards used to evaluate those services will help set service priorities. Please complete an online survey at www.mbta.com/survey.
NOTICE: MassDOT conducting public meetings on draft CIP for FY16
NOTICE: MBTA ROC recruiting new members
Dear T Riders,
The MBTA Rider Oversight committee (MBTA ROC), formed in 2004, is a diverse group of riders across all modes of the MBTA. We work with MBTA employees and outside groups in order to provide recommendations to the MBTA. Our primary goal is to bring attention to the needs and concerns of all riders.
We have several vacancies, and are seeking individuals with a strong interest in transit issues and a willingness to make a firm commitment to the ROC's mission. At a minimum, we require that you commit to attending 2 meetings per month for a total of approximately 4 hours per month.
If you wish to be considered for a position, please provide us with the following information along with your contact information:
- How often do you use the MBTA (and which services)?
- What is your primary reason for using the MBTA?
- How long have you been using the MBTA?
- What do you think are the most important issues facing the MBTA?
- What are some improvements that could be implemented in the near-term and in the long-term?
- What can you contribute to the committee?
Please email your response by September 15 , 2015, to email@example.com.
The MBTA Rider Oversight Committee
NOTICE: MBTA holding meetings on the future of Late Night Service
The MBTA is holding a series of informational meetings for the public to share comments the future of late-night service. Five meetings in Boston and Cambridge will be held through March 11. More information is available at http://www.mbta.com/about_the_mbta/public_meetings/?id=6442453882.
PRESS RELEASE: MBTA ROC Submits Recommendation for Overnight Service Funding
After months of meetings, the MBTA Rider Oversight Committee (ROC) has submitted their official recommendation to the MBTA regarding a means to fund overnight service. Earlier this year, the committee tasked themselves with finding a way to make overnight service a reality without adding to the MBTA's existing debt load. Their solution is to pay for overnight service using the revenue generated from a re-envisioned college student pass program. The committee's report details similar programs throughout the nation, highlighting their feasibility, popularity, and practicality. The entire report is available here:
The ROC will give a presentation on their report at 5pm on Monday, July 29 in the State Transportation Building (10 Park Plaza), Conference Rooms 1, 2, and 3. If you have any questions, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The ROC asks that the administration and the legislature abide by the spirit of the 2013 Transportation Bill:
November 30, 2015
To: Governor Baker, House Speaker DeLeo, Senate President Rosenberg, Secretary Pollack, MBTA General Manager DePaola, MBTA Chief Administrator Shortsleeve, Members of the Fiscal Management Control Board, Members of the Joint Committee on Transportation, and Chairs of the MBTA Caucus,
We understand that there is currently a dispute as to whether the law technically allows for fare increases of up to 10% every 2 years. The MBTA Rider Oversight Committee wants to go on record that we supported regular small fare increases in the discussions leading up to the large (in excess of 20%) fare increases in 2012. We felt that 5% fare increases every 2 years would not only meet the rate of inflation, but more importantly, it would be a rate that would minimize the negative financial impact on riders.
In most, if not all, of the discussions regarding the 2013 Transportation Finance bill, the 5%-every-2-years rate was agreed to be a reasonable rate. We are not aware of any public discussion about making that rate 10% every 2 years. Indeed, this was the interpretation of the legislation that the MBTA used when it raised fares in 2014. In our discussions with various MBTA staff during that process last year, there was never any mention about the ability to raise fares 10%. Also, when we wrote a letter to members of the Joint Committee on Transportation earlier this year, it was to voice our support to retain legislation that capped fare increases at a rate of 5% every 2 years.
We are disappointed that the administration would use a technicality to create a situation that violates the trust that the public has with the MBTA regarding fare increases. If the administration’s Fiscal Management Control Board (FMCB) has concluded that it needs to increase fares by more than 5% in 2016, then it should (1) start a conversation with the public regarding a different rate of fare increases and (2) work with our elected officials to craft clear legislation that matches the public’s understanding of that rate. As members of the public, we are willing to work with the FMCB, MBTA staff, and members of the legislature to explore alternatives.
Government works best when there is a trust between our elected officials , as represented by their appointees, and us, their constituents. There is the letter of the law, and then there is the spirit of the law. We ask that everyone involved in the decisions regarding the 2016 fare increase honor the spirit of the 2013 Transportation Finance legislation and limit fare increases to 5% every 2 years.
The MBTA Rider Oversight Committee
The MBTA ROC's letter to Massachusetts state senators and representatives on proposed legislation to change the fare increase cap:
May 29, 2015
Dear Senator or Representative,
We, the MBTA Rider Oversight Committee (ROC), write to request that you retain the 2013 legislation that limits the rate of fare increases. We acknowledge that fiscal prudence requires fare increases, and we stand in support with the public for fares that increase at a regular rate. The ROC has always maintained that position; and from the meetings held before the 2012 fare increases, it is clear that there is widespread support among MBTA riders for smaller fare increases that are more frequent and predictable rather than larger and unpredictable fare increases. Should the MBTA determine that it needs to increase fares every 12 months instead of every 24 months, we think that would be acceptable as long as the annual rate of increase is between 2-3 percent. Therefore, we urge you to reject Section 8 of Bill H.3447 which calls for the repeal of Subsection (d) of section 61 of Chapter 46 of the Acts of 2013. We accept that there may be a need to adjust the intervals and the annual rate of increase, but affordable increases at predictable intervals are better for the public.
The MBTA Rider Oversight Committee
If you would like to contact your senator or representative on this issue, please click here.
Click here to forward a letter written by Transporation for Massachusetts to your senator or representative on this issue.
This is not an official MBTA web site. The Rider Oversight Committee is affiliated with, but editorially independent from, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority. The official MBTA web site is www.mbta.com.