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Richard Anderson replacing Wick Moorman as Amtrak CEO


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#281 Philly Amtrak Fan

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 07:27 PM

Only time will tell if Richard Anderson will support expansion of the Amtrak LD system or expansion of Amtrak at all ... and if it will even matter if he does. If Amtrak can't afford expansion or doesn't have the equipment to support expansion, it won't matter how much Rich supports expansion.


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#282 Thirdrail7

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 09:54 PM



Only time will tell if Richard Anderson will support expansion of the Amtrak LD system or expansion of Amtrak at all ... and if it will even matter if he does. If Amtrak can't afford expansion or doesn't have the equipment to support expansion, it won't matter how much Rich supports expansion.

 

You tend to not get what you don't ask for. If he doesn't plan on expansion or ask for funding for expansion/growth, funding won't even be considered.  So, it definitely makes a difference. Imagine if he just went along with the proposed budget and didn't ask for anything else. Do you honestly think Congress would have forked over more than requested??


Edited by Thirdrail7, 17 April 2018 - 01:46 PM.

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They say laughter is the best medicine. Obviously they never posted on AU.


#283 Green Maned Lion

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 08:26 AM

One of the things that bugs me about NJ Transit is their lack of competent political hacks. The proper job of the head of a government agency is to advocate for their agency, against any opposers. NJ Transit usually fails to publicly do this.

Andersons job is to advocate for improving and increasing the scope of his agency while running it efficiently. Of he hasnt called out the LD trains as something requiring elimination, his job is to advocate for its expansion and improvements.

When I ran my business I was in charge of buying, management, and keeping the books and controlling the purse strings on reinvestment. My wife was in charge of maintaining the inventory and running the store. We had debates every week about what to buy, with me tending towards conserving monetary resources (rainy day and money to be taken out of the business for personal use) and her aiming to better stock shelves and expand our lineup.

That is the kind of thing that should take place between Congress and somebody like Anderson.
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#284 Seaboard92

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 10:26 AM

Maybe there would be a use for my Poli Sci degree at NJT. I could be a decent political hack.
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#285 Philly Amtrak Fan

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 06:02 PM

 



Only time will tell if Richard Anderson will support expansion of the Amtrak LD system or expansion of Amtrak at all ... and if it will even matter if he does. If Amtrak can't afford expansion or doesn't have the equipment to support expansion, it won't matter how much Rich supports expansion.

 

You tend to not get what you don't ask for. If he doesn't plan on expansion or ask for funding for expansion/growth, funding won't even be considered.  So, it definitely makes a difference. Imagine if he just went along with the proposed budget and didn't ask for anything else. Do you honestly think Congress would have forked over more than requested??

 

 

I don't know what Amtrak CEO's have asked for since A-Day. I know how much new we've gotten since then and that's not much.


Trains Traveled: Broadway Limited (CHI-Harrisburg, PA), Three Rivers (Harrisburg, PA-CHI, Altoona, PA-CHI, PHL-CHI), Capitol Limited (CHI-WAS), Lake Shore Limited (NYP-CHI), , Silver Meteor (PHL-ORL), Southwest Chief (CHI-LAX), California Zephyr (CHI-SLC, SLC-EMY), City of New Orleans and/or Illini (CHI-Champaign, IL), Texas Eagle (CHI-DAL)
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#286 cpotisch

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Posted 18 April 2018 - 02:27 PM

 

 



Only time will tell if Richard Anderson will support expansion of the Amtrak LD system or expansion of Amtrak at all ... and if it will even matter if he does. If Amtrak can't afford expansion or doesn't have the equipment to support expansion, it won't matter how much Rich supports expansion.

 

You tend to not get what you don't ask for. If he doesn't plan on expansion or ask for funding for expansion/growth, funding won't even be considered.  So, it definitely makes a difference. Imagine if he just went along with the proposed budget and didn't ask for anything else. Do you honestly think Congress would have forked over more than requested??

 

 

I don't know what Amtrak CEO's have asked for since A-Day. I know how much new we've gotten since then and that's not much.

 

 

Let's say I offer you $75 to clean my house. And you say, "I'll do it for $90." And I respond, "Sure!" Now you have $90 and that's great.

 

Alternative scenario:

I offer you $75 to clean my house. And you say, "Deal!" Now you have $75.

 

Do you now see why it makes a difference what the CEO asks for?


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#287 FrensicPic

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Posted 03 May 2018 - 01:00 PM

Came across this this morning. Wasn't aware of "To the Trains" website/blog until now. Appears to be fairly new. FWIW...covers several of the Anderson concerns being voiced here.  

An Open Letter to Richard Anderson

I am writing this open letter to you as a proponent of train travel and finding ways to improve the utilization of Amtrak in the United States. Since January 1 of this year, when you became the sole Chief Executive Officer after the retirement of Charles “Wick” Moorman, you have been putting forth policies which I do not believe are in the best interest of America’s Railroad.

http://tothetrainstr...chard-anderson/

 

Moderator - If a different discussion is more fitting, feel free to move this post.


Edited by FrensicPic, 03 May 2018 - 01:02 PM.

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#288 cpotisch

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Posted 03 May 2018 - 09:12 PM

Came across this this morning. Wasn't aware of "To the Trains" website/blog until now. Appears to be fairly new. FWIW...covers several of the Anderson concerns being voiced here.  

An Open Letter to Richard Anderson

I am writing this open letter to you as a proponent of train travel and finding ways to improve the utilization of Amtrak in the United States. Since January 1 of this year, when you became the sole Chief Executive Officer after the retirement of Charles “Wick” Moorman, you have been putting forth policies which I do not believe are in the best interest of America’s Railroad.

http://tothetrainstr...chard-anderson/

 

Moderator - If a different discussion is more fitting, feel free to move this post.

I agree with a lot the writer has to say here, but I don't see how those final angry words do much good if you're trying to convince the CEO to hear your point of view:

 

And unfortunately, the steps which you have taken and have said you plan to take in your short amount of time in office have shown me little more than that you are an airline CEO who does not know what operating Amtrak successfully would require and either does not know how to fix it or simply does not care.


Edited by cpotisch, 03 May 2018 - 09:12 PM.

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#289 neroden

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Posted 04 May 2018 - 07:59 AM

Anderson's grossly inaccurate claim that the national network claims "cost $750 million per year" (they don't) is a sign that he simply doesn't understand the business.

 

He needs to talk to Boardman, who understands something about the mare's nest which is Amtrak accounting.  Believing phony accounting has been the downfall of many a CEO (the Board of the Milwaukee Railroad is perhaps most infamous in this regard).  If Mr. Anderson is making decisions based on bad business data -- and I think that he *is* -- he's going to get very bad results.

 

Allocated costs are a fake.  The costs are real but the allocations are fake.  As Boardman knew, and attempted to explain to Congress, marginal costs are critical.  Most of that $750 million would just fall right back on the NEC -- or onto the state corridors -- if the long-distance trains were eliminated.  There is no legitimate sense in which those are costs of the long-distance trains.

 

Anderson flubbed an easy question from Jim Matthews regarding overhead and economies of scale back at the NARP 50th anniversary meeting.  Let me make this very clear: Anderson's answer to that question was outright wrong.  It showed a failure to understand fixed costs vs. variable costs.  He's doubled down on this fatal misunderstanding in later comments.  I think he just flat-out does not understand what he's dealing with.

 

I used to think that someone who was a major corporate CEO would have to understand the difference, but I've now witnessed (in the course of following Tesla stock) enough investment analysts, investment bankers, portfolio managers, and ex-CEOs who *clearly don't* understand the difference between fixed and variable costs that I can no longer assume that.  The evidence so far points to Mr. Anderson being one of the guys who doesn't.  I hope he can prove me wrong.


Edited by neroden, 04 May 2018 - 08:05 AM.

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#290 Thirdrail7

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Posted 20 May 2018 - 12:59 PM

Mr. Anderson has dramatically increased the en route cleaning program. He is attempting to bring it to state supported trains as well. 

 

Additional  mechanical employees and cleaners are also being hired for the terminals so they can receive proper attention even if the train is dramatically late. This is an area that has been deprived since Mr. Gunn slashed the mechanical departments.

 

I guess the chefs can ask for a transfer.


Edited by Thirdrail7, 20 May 2018 - 01:00 PM.

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They say laughter is the best medicine. Obviously they never posted on AU.


#291 jis

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Posted 20 May 2018 - 01:04 PM

Are they going to restore the overnight crew that was removed , causing LD consists to be not touched at Sunnyside until just a few hours before departure, as you had explained a while back in response to one of my occasional hissy-fits on the subject?



#292 Seaboard92

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Posted 20 May 2018 - 02:17 PM

Mr. Anderson has dramatically increased the en route cleaning program. He is attempting to bring it to state supported trains as well. 
 
Additional  mechanical employees and cleaners are also being hired for the terminals so they can receive proper attention even if the train is dramatically late. This is an area that has been deprived since Mr. Gunn slashed the mechanical departments.
 
I guess the chefs can ask for a transfer.


Now this is a change I can actually support. Hopefully they will bring back the graveyard shift in NYS which should bring down some initial terminal delays as well.
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#293 Thirdrail7

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Posted 22 May 2018 - 08:02 PM

Are they going to restore the overnight crew that was removed , causing LD consists to be not touched at Sunnyside until just a few hours before departure, as you had explained a while back in response to one of my occasional hissy-fits on the subject?

 

 


 Hopefully they will bring back the graveyard shift in NYS which should bring down some initial terminal delays as well.

 

 

I seriously doubt they would bring back the Long Distance graveyard shift at SSYD. I believe they changed some of the scheduling so there will a bridge shift of sorts.

 

That should cover it for the time being, particularly while the LSL is operating to BOS. If things aren't that delayed, 98 and 20 should arrive in time for daylight or the bridge crew to work.

 

That just leaves 92 and 50.


Edited by Thirdrail7, 22 May 2018 - 08:03 PM.

They say laughter is the best medicine. Obviously they never posted on AU.


#294 jis

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Posted 05 June 2018 - 05:40 PM

Amtrak CEO Richard Anderson's response to a letter from the Presidents of AAPRCO Robert Donnely and and RPCA Roger Fuehring on matters ranging from food service and Southwest Chief to PV and Charter Trains

 

http://files.constan...71531d9c63e.pdf



#295 AmtrakFlyer

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Posted 05 June 2018 - 06:33 PM

Not impressed with Andersons letter. To start with anyone who has actually ridden a LDT end point to end point knows that seats and rooms turn over constantly. On the flip side people do indeed ride end point to endpoint. This makes our current long distance trains a model for something build upon, not destroy.

He either doesnt understand the business model or will just say anything to implement Elaine Chous and the administrations agenda.

#296 Ryan

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Posted 05 June 2018 - 07:09 PM

The "destroy" part seems to be completely made up. There is still nothing in there that says LD trains are going away.

The problem that he cites are real ones. Cities like Cincinnati, San Antonio, and Pittsburgh see their one-a-day LD trains at abysmal hours. It's a long-acknowledged issue here, that Amtrak has done nothing to address. Now, we have someone that recognizes that this is a problem, and seems to want to do something about it. He may make a terrible mess of trying to fix it up, but maybe the answer is working to establish daytime service in cities such as those in addition to the current trains that pass through. That would make nearly everyone here thrilled, no? Is that a pie in the sky notion? Maybe? But I'm willing to at least hear what the man's plan is before running him out of town.
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#297 AmtrakFlyer

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Posted 05 June 2018 - 07:15 PM

The answer is corridor trains in ADDITION to long distance trains, its so simple its stupid.

#298 Ryan

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Posted 05 June 2018 - 07:16 PM

Which is why I suggested it.

The actual funding and execution of it is anything but simple.
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#299 Philly Amtrak Fan

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Posted 05 June 2018 - 07:40 PM

The answer is corridor trains in ADDITION to long distance trains, its so simple its stupid.

 

With what equipment? With what money? If it was that simple, wouldn't it have been done by the last ten Amtrak presidents?


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#300 AmtrakFlyer

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Posted 05 June 2018 - 07:53 PM

You cant have a strong body without a skeleton. The national network is the skeleton to build upon. Yes, more money is the answer even to maintain the status quo.
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