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Join Me at Noon For Online Chat

We'll have our regular Monday chat at noon, in which we can talk about any of the local transportation topics.

We've certainly had plenty to talk about over the past week. In transit, there's the issue of changes in the SmartBenefits program, which will affect thousands of us who download the money onto our SmarTrip cards. I'm hoping we'll be joined today by Cyndi Zieman, Metro's SmarTrip director, who can respond to some of your questions about the planned changes.

Then there was the equipment problem at Metro headquarters that struck down many of Metro's communication functions for hours.

On the roads, there's plenty of construction action going on across the region. And speaking of meltdowns, there was the two-day blow to Montgomery County's signal light timing system.

That's enough to make you want to get away: Shall we talk about Thanksgiving trips?

Here's the link to the discussion. And here's the one in case you want to submit a question or comment in advance.

By Robert Thomson  |  November 9, 2009; 10:50 AM ET
 | Tags: Dr. Gridlock  
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The link to the discussion transcript doesn't work.

Posted by: heresathought | November 9, 2009 2:33 PM | Report abuse

Very confusing comments from the Metro rep in today's chat regarding SmartBenefits.

I still am unclear what will happen to any unused balance on January 1, 2010.

Also, the rep kept saying that personal funds will continue to accrue while unused SmartBenefits amounts will be returned to the employer at the end of the month.

1. What does the employer do with the refunded money? Return it to employees?

2. It appears from Metro's website that fares are not drawn first from SmartBenefits and then from the personal account. Instead, fares are split with half the fare coming from SmartBenefits and half from Personal funds. If employers are not returning credited money to their employees, it is going to take some thought for employees to calculate SmartBenefits contributions the next few months.

Posted by: ghokee | November 9, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

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