C-Tran Board Caves to Leavitt & Crew

by lewwaters

From the Columbian

Stalled by the threat of a bloc veto by members of the Vancouver City Council, the C-Tran board agreed Tuesday to put off deciding the boundaries for a 2012 sales tax vote on light rail and bus rapid transit.

Before the board Tuesday was a proposal put forward by board member and Clark County Commissioner Steve Stuart that called for a 0.1 percent sales tax vote go before voters in all of C-Tran’s service area in either August or November 2012.

But on Monday night, the Vancouver City Council, led by Mayor Tim Leavitt, said it wanted more time to hear details on a districtwide vote versus a narrower subdistrict before making a call. The council threatened to vote down Stuart’s proposal as it stood.

Less than 2 weeks ago, newly announced CRC Director Nancy Boyd said,

“We are shifting into delivery mode. We’re transitioning from planning … into how are we going to deliver the project. It’s really an exciting time, and we’re refocusing the staff on getting all the plans put to reality.”

CRC is going into delivery mode while Leavitt stalls a citizen vote?

I’m voting NO on anything related to C-Tran. No vote, let it go broke.

24 Comments to “C-Tran Board Caves to Leavitt & Crew”

  1. Don’t even get me started.

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  2. It’s time to kick the whole lot of them out.

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  3. You know, I never thought I’d see the day in America when elected officials would be so arrogantly defiant of the voters.

    Of course, I also never thought I would see the day when a bloody Revolution would be so needed in this country.

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  4. As long as light rail or BRT is on the agenda, we have to assume that any money they get may go to these wastes instead of serving the transit dependent.

    Light rail: costs too much, does too little.

    Thanks
    JK

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  5. The battle is very simple: Vancouver wants a new bridge and Portland can take or leave it. Portland will only take a bridge if it has Light Rail. Portland would rather have no bridge than a 3rd bridge. Portland is demanding bike lanes, extra environmental concerns, and other non-transportation related issues.

    I support a new bridge but, frankly, Vancouver is in such a weak (lousy) negotiating position, it may be better to kick the can down the road – just like the economic problems of this nation.

    Democracy is tough.

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  6. It isn’t Democracy when a small group of elected ruling class pulls every stunt they can to deny citizens a vote so they can shove a multi-Billion dollar boondoggle down their throats.

    I say screw Portland. We need people in office with the balls to stand up to Portland.

    Why in the hell do we continue to cower to Portland? We had the opportunity to draw businesses from Portland to Clark County when they passed measures 66 & 67.

    Instead, our elected morons chose to follow suit.

    No, it isn’t Democracy when the voices of the people are drowned out by the elected who lie, scheme and steal to benefit their fatcat buddies in the light rail mafia.

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  7. Lew, if there is a vote – Light Rail loses. If Light Rail loses, Portland pulls the plug on a bridge. All the blustering, indignant, threatening talk from Vancouver hasn’t done a thing to correct the horrific and criminal taxation of Vancouver residents by Oregon, what makes you think we can do something about Portland’s stance on a bridge?

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  8. Then let the plug be pulled, Martin. That’s what I mean by having the balls to stand up to them.

    That bridge is for Portland’s benefit more than ours. And, we conontiue to cower and be held hostage by those idiots over there?

    Hell, as it is, we will be paying for road improvements in their state with income taxes from our citizens and tolls added to the bridge.

    Just as Reagan did with Gorbachev, get up and walk out. Give Portland the finger, not citizens of Clark County.

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  9. It may be that a new bridge will have to wait another 20 years. Perhaps Vancouver will not grow during that time? Honestly, if Vancouver never grows, we’ll NEVER need to replace the bridge. The real question is “How can we keep Vancouver from growing?” or at least not want to cross the river if we do grow?

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  10. We had the opportunity when Oregon passed measures 66 & 67, but out elected ruling class let it slip through their fingers.

    Will Washington & Clark County Recognize Oregon’s Free Gift?

    While Wash. Officials Ignore Oregon’s Gift, Chicago’s Mayor Swoops In

    Cowering to Portland has never benefited the community at all.

    If Portland must extend their financially failing Loot Rail to Vancouver, why aren’t we demanding they pay us instead of us paying them?

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  11. People who want to live in Portland do so for a reason. Businesses that stay there do so because they like it there. Some businesses will be driven out of Portland due to high taxes but more will be attracted in by the lifestyle supported by those taxes. Only a few of cities in the nation can do this (San Francisco, Boston, New York) because most Americans are not progressives (socialist inclinations). Many Vancouverites who work in Portland are not progressives either, that’s why they live in Vancouver. The bottom line is that Vancouver is not going to draw many businesses out of Portland based on economic grounds because the businesses that are in Portland LIKE it there.

    Which brings us to the bridge. The Soviet Socialist Republic of Portland doesn’t really like non-progressives, especially not Vancouverites. They would rather we just send tax money and not actually come into their state.

    Our answer may be “Screw You Portland!” but that means either Vancouver can’t grow or people who live in Vancouver quit going to Portland.

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  12. Sorry Martin, but you display exactly the attitude Portland wants and that keeps us hostage to their demands.

    Businesses will go where they stand to make the most profit. When measures 66 & 67 passed, we could have offered them some tax breaks to draw them over. Not all would have come, but if we showed them it was advantageous to move here to a more business friendly environment, we would have gained some.

    The increased employment would make up for the tax breaks.

    At the same time we could have trimmed spending to more realistic levels, and I don’t mean by closing fire stations or laying off Fire Fighters and Police (think $1.5 Million for a closed landfill sight when waiting, the county could have gotten it for $1)

    If we wish our community to grow and expand, we won’t accomplish that by remaining in Portlands shadow and allowing them to dictate our every move. Portland does not do anything for our benefit.

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  13. Actually, Lew, I don’t know how to respond to those statements?

    Portland is Portland – they will do what they want for their constituency (which does NOT include Vancouverites).

    Vancouver IS in Portland’s shadow, as evidenced by ~70K Vancouverites who cross the river each day.

    Either the paradigm has to change (unlikely but I’ll discuss the possibility with you), or we have to conduct our rebellion from Portland at the State level. All out war.

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  14. The comment wasn’t meant as a slur, martin, but to point out the attitude many have over here that allows Portland to hold us hostage to their whims.

    Yes, Portland is Portland and they don’t do a think for us, except take from us and demand we give them more to satisfy their greed.

    And yes, we are in their shadow and if we wish to remain a vibrant community, that must change. As you point out, 70K of our citizens work there. By the same token, that also shows they don’t have enough talent over there to fulfill their needs. They are dependent upon us as well, but we kow tow to their every demand.

    So yes, the paradigm must change and that will take people in elected office with some balls. You and I most likely agree on several ways to accomplish that.

    But, as long as we cower in front of them and allow them run roughshod over us, it will not happen and we will continue sending millions of our dollars to their community, while ours does without.

    Whatever it takes at whatever level, it has to be done.

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  15. I will be voting against all future C-Tran measures until they abandon their ridiculous quest. I’m hoping that not only will the light rail and rapid transit request fail (if we are allowed to vote), but that the core bus ballot (November 2011) request fails too. A bonus would be to see that smug smirk wiped off Leavitt’s face.

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  16. I don’t see that we have any other reasonable choice, Craig.

    Any project this large must have citizen support in order to be workable. No support it is a burden. No vote and there is no way to guage citizen support.

    If the only way we have left to get the message across is to vote down funding of C-Tran, so be it.

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  17. I agree with your assessment that Clark County blew a golden opportunity when 66 and 67 were approved in Oregon. It seems like the powers that be do everything they can to keep this area dependent on Oregon. Where were Stuart, Boldt, and Mielke; Pridemore, Wallace, Probst, and Jacks, etc. when 66/67 came up? I heard a little ‘wishful thinking’, but no serious effort to take advantage of the opportunity.

    Martin is correct though. There are businesses that will stay in Portland because they love the progressive environment of Portland. We need to find a way to keep workers on our side of the river. Let Portlanders enjoy their progressive environment all they want.

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  18. Craig, I contacted all and the few replies I received are in the links I gave Martin.

    Yes, those that love Portland will remain. Let them stay.

    However, I do believe several others would be willing to move over.

    Somehow, we hve to cut the unbilical cord we have to Portland. They do us no favors.

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  19. Lew

    Start the recall of Leavitt and Jeanne Harris. We have all had enough.

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  20. re: 66 & 67
    You have another change!

    Portland’s Milwaulkie light rial line will displace 1000 jobs from SE Portland. Once forced to move, many will move out of Portland and out of Multnomah county.

    Your job is to motivate them to move to Clark county instead of Clackamas.

    PS: Last I saw, Clark County was growing more rapidly than Multnomah or Washington, so the Portland crackpots are already losing. All Vancouver needs to do is NO REPEAT PORTLAND’s MISTAKES.

    Thanks
    JK

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  21. re: 66 & 67 (corrected)
    You have another chance!

    Portland’s Milwaulkie light rial line will displace 1000 jobs from SE Portland. Once forced to move, many will move out of Portland and out of Multnomah County.

    Your job is to motivate them to move to Clark County instead of Clackamas.

    PS: Last I saw, Clark County was growing more rapidly than Multnomah or Washington, so the Portland crackpots are already losing. All Vancouver needs to do is NOT REPEAT PORTLAND’s MISTAKES.

    That means:
    NO LIGHT RAIL.
    NO SUBSIDIES FOR HIGH DENSITY.
    NO RESTRICTION ON LAND FOR JOBS.
    It is not the government’s job to cause redevelopment.
    Its not the government’s job to make driving difficult.
    It is not the government’s job to increase the density of the neighborhoods.
    It is not the government’s job to promote biking or walking or transit.

    The government’s job is to provide basic services such as good schools, courts, police, fire protection, roads, and a safety net. (Some would argue that several of these could be better provided by the creativity of private enterprise – I agree!)

    Thanks
    JK

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  22. Jim, Government’s “job” is whatever we say it is. If enough voters agree with you then I agree with you, and since our country is divided into physical areas, each with near-autonomy, people can move to just about anywhere that suits their sensibilities.

    People who live in Portland moved there because they liked it. Simply projecting your personal perspective onto them will not cause businesses to move to Vancouver, (but I agree we should make Vancouver a good option).

    I don’t want to argue, I just want to point out that we set the wrong expectations for ourselves if we assume all people think the same.

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  23. Martin, of course all people do not think the same. That is why we hold votes and the one with the most wins wins (except for the presidency which is a unique election, but for another discussion).

    When it comes to light rail, this is why we continue to demand a vote of all of Clark County. Neither side currently knows how the overall community feels for certain and both claim to be the majority view.

    Only a vote of all of Clark County, who will end up being the ones paying for it, not only some gerrymandered sub-district to vote in favor of it, will state community sentiment.

    The efforts to block that vote tell me they fear a vote of the whole public.

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  24. One thing is really funny that I doubt gets much mention here and is related to this discussion.

    There was some comments on one of the C-tran board meetings that was held at the Clark County PSC building recently.

    Tim asked specifically on the topic of how much the average box recovery for average bus ride which ran some where near 16-19 percent. The average commuter was 25? percent and growing. That the average bus commuter riders were subsidizing some of the Ctran operations. Ctran is doing a lot of things to raise their farebox returns and recovery on a lot of different fronts to help shore things up.

    But my point in bringing this up was and some where I had heard (I believe at this same meeting) that C-tran will FIGHT to keep those highly valued bus runs even after the CRC is built and LRT is brought into Vancouver.

    Like

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