Lhota wants fewer live M.T.A. board meetings, but will take questions online

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Lhota. (Dana Rubinstein)
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Tomorrow, M.T.A. chairman Joe Lhota will propose reducing the number of board meetings at which the public gets to address the M.T.A. leadership from 11 to eight, while also establishing a new, twice-yearly "Chairman's Forum" in person and online.

The new schedule, if approved, would also apply to several of the agency's committee meetings, which are also open to the public.

The idea behind reducing the frequency of meetings is to "to promote more efficient use of the time and resources of Board members and staff," according to the agenda for tomorrow's corporate governance and audit committee meetings. 

That doesn't necessarily sit well with William Henderson, executive director of the Permanent Citizens Advisory Committee to the M.T.A., although he's reserving final judgment until tomorrow.

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"We want to make sure there’s still ample opportunity for people to address the board," he told Capital. "It’s sort of the court of last resort. If you can’t get anything any other way, you can at least come and have your two minutes to address the board."

At the same time, the M.T.A. chairman would, twice a year, hold a live-streamed "Chairman's Forum," where the public, both in person and online, would be able to engage with the agency's chairman and presidents directly.

"The Chairman Forum meetings would allow for a greater exchange of information than is possible at the regular Board and Committee meetings, which, while they do include a public speaking session, do not include question and answer sessions," reads the agenda.

"I’m sort of reserving judgment until I hear the full presentation, I guess," said Henderson.