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Fairfield County Lawmakers Take Complaints To Metro-North

More than 70 people were injured when a Metro-North train derailed on the Fairfield-Bridgeport border in May.
More than 70 people were injured when a Metro-North train derailed on the Fairfield-Bridgeport border in May. Photo Credit: NTSB via Flickr (File)

FAIRFIELD COUNTY, Conn. -- State legislators, including some from Fairfield County, took aim at Metro-North officials and unloaded a series of complaints about the commuter railroad during an informational forum Thursday at the Capitol, the Hartford Courant reported .

Joseph Giulietti, the new president of Metro-North Railroad, and his boss, Metropolitan Transportation Authority Chairman Thomas Prendergast, attended the hearing before the legislature's Transportation Committee.

The legislators took issue with the derailments, delays, power failures and poor customer service along the New Haven Line and the Danbury Branch. The talked of the complaints they receive from their constituents.

"When the railroad fails, it has such an impact on the [whole] region. There's a trickle down," Sen. Toni Boucher, R-Wilton, was quoted as saying by the Courant. She also represents New Canaan, Redding, Ridgefield, Weston and Westport.

State Sen. L. Scott Frantz, a Republican who represents New Cannan, Stamford and Greenwich, took issue Metro-North's recent run of problems after the hearing.

“There is a lot of anger and frustration in the community related to the poor performance of Metro-North. Although I am extremely disappointed in service thus far, we may be seeing a path to improvement," Frantz said in a statement. "Today’s informational hearing was an opportunity for us to gain a better understanding of what has and has not been done by Metro-North, which will help us determine how to get this right as quickly as possible."

Frantz went on to say that in order to safely restore Metro-North's run times and reliability, greater funding is in order.

“We also need to make sure that transportation funding is preserved and funds are spent appropriately," Frantz said. "There are many causes for Metro-North’s service flaws, and a lack of appropriate funding for infrastructure improvements is a significant factor at play.”

The entire two-and-a-half hour hearing before the Transportation Committee can be viewed here at the Connecticut Network online.

Read the full story from the Hartford Courant here .

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