The embattled transit chief who on Tuesday said the snowmageddon besieging Boston wasn’t her “first rodeo,” handed in her resignation Wednesday.
Battered by blizzards, stranded commuters, broken T trains, frozen tracks and political pressure, MBTA General Manager Beverly Scott said she’d step down April 11.
Some of the Red Line cars still in service as six feet of snow fell on Boston were used during the blizzard of ‘78. Under Scott’s leadership, the MBTA shut commuter rail and subway services on two separate days. Monday’s snow left 50 trains disabled across the T’s system, and in three instances passengers had to be evacuated from stalled trains.
At a press conference on Tuesday, Scott lambasted the lack of investment in Boston’s aging transit system.
“Quite candidly, I’ve been around 40 years and I have been through hurricanes, I’ve been through world Trade Center bombings, tornadoes coming … so this ain’t this woman’s first rodeo,” she said.
“It is only because of the fact of the exceptional experience and knowledge of this team that they have been making a way out of no way, and they’ve been doing it for years without significant investment,” she added.
The pressure on Scott, former CEO and general manager for MARTA, the transit agency in balmy Atlanta continued to build after newly elected Gov. Charlie Baker called out her agency on Monday saying the state of the T was “unacceptable.”
“All I can tell you is it’s been very difficult to count on the representations that have been made by the T over the course of the past few weeks, and the first time that happens you can blame it on the weather, but after a while it starts to feel like something more,” he said
Scott submitted her letter of resignation today to John Jenkins, chairman of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation Board of Directors. The state hired her to a three year contract in December, 2012, with a starting salary of $220,000 back in 2012.
Scott wrote to Jenkins that she’ll use the next two months to return T services to “normalcy” following the snows, develop a resiliency plan for the system in coordination with the American Public Transportation Association, and complete next year’s budget proposal.
“No question, much more remains to be done to achieve the modern and first class public transportation system that all want and deserve,” she wrote.
During a Tuesday press conference, Scott said the recent string of storms “would have taken anyone down.”
“The trains are 100 years old… To think that it’s going to have the resilience to rise up and fly like an eagle… is foolish,” said Scott.
Morgan Rousseau contributed to this report.