C-Tran Already Drooling For Even More of Your Tax Dollars

by lewwaters

In a Sunday November 20, 2011 Op-Ed in our local version of Pravda, the Columbian, that should rightfully be filed away in the “have you no shame” column, C-TRAN Executive Director/CEO Jeff Hamm, still drooling over having successfully conned nearly 54% of Clark County voters begins laying out his next rip-off of taxpayers, in our third year of double digit unemployment.

Oddly enough, Hamm now informs us that C-Van will be expanded with the passage of Proposition 1. I don’t recall much, if any mention that part of Prop 1 was to “expand” C-Van, do you? I thought all along it was if they didn’t get deeper into our pockets, Granny and the handicapped were going to be left standing out in the cold with no way to get to the doctor.

Apparently gazing into some liberal prophetic crystal ball, Hamm says, “Someday soon, Clark County will return to times of economic prosperity and again grow its population and employment base.”

“Someday soon?” I thought the Clark County Pravda has been telling us how much better things are now, with 9% unemployment being a “new norm” Democrats speak of and supporters of Prop 1 telling us we are stingy and greedy if we don’t give up more of our dwindling paychecks to whatever the ruling class in Clark County tells us we must.

But, prosperity will return “soon?” Where? How? We are in our third year of double digit unemployment with no efforts apparent to cut the umbilical cord to Portland, Oregon. It appears as our elected rulers seem more determined than ever to be even more dependent upon Portland.

If you recall, it should still be fresh in your mind, Prop 1 had nothing to do with Portland’s ‘Loot Rail’ being brought into out county, even though forensic auditor Tiffany Couch exposed that C-TRAN was holding Millions of Dollars in reserve to fund ‘Loot Rail’ expansion and their ‘pie in the sky” Fourth Plain Bus Rapid Transit system. But now we read from Hamm, “

In 2012, the C-Tran Board of Directors will wrestle with two significant opportunities to step into that future: The Columbia River Crossing (CRC) light rail extension into Vancouver and a Fourth Plain Boulevard Transit Improvement Project. While the CRC project and light rail has generated an intense amount of interest and discussion throughout the region, it is important to understand C-Tran’s role in the project and what citizens may be asked for in order to fulfill that part of the agency’s adopted 20 Year Transit Development Plan. In 2008, the C-Tran Board of Directors voted to support the CRC project with two funding-related conditions:

That C-Tran would not have to ask its voters to fund any construction elements of Light Rail Transit (LRT); and …

That C-Tran would ask voters to fund only the Vancouver side’s share of the LRT operations and maintenance costs.”

Do you note there is no mention of replacing an antiquated bridge there, as we have been told time and again was the main reason for the CRC? Having successfully duped 54% of you voters, Hamm can begin being more honest in that the primary reason for a new bridge, ruled safe for at least another 50 years by structural analysts from both states, is to expand Tri-Met’s financially bankrupt ‘Loot Rail” to Clark County and having Clark County fund even more of Multnomah County’s ventures.

Hamm says, “less than a 0.1 percent C-Tran service-area-wide sales tax increase” would be needed to cover the estimated “$2.57 million per year” cost they claim expanding ‘Loot Rail’ to Clark County will cost.

When was the last time you heard of any “study” launched by government on costs associated with any of these legacy building, dreamy projects not greatly exceeding projected costs? They always estimate very low and project revenues very high, but when reality hits and the true costs come out, you, the hapless duped taxpayer and business owners must cough up even more, resulting in less to care for your family and higher unemployment as businesses struggle to keep costs down.

The single most ridiculous part of Hamm’s Op-Ed and in showing just how stupid he thinks you all are, says of the next planned taxpayer rip-off, “

It envisions a C-Tran willing to provide a palette of services to empower citizens with more and better mobility options and thereby contribute positively to the region’s sustainability, livability and economic vitality.”

How in the world, what with all of the efforts to “force you out of your car,” higher gas taxes, limited drilling and refining of oil into gas, increased license fees, higher parking fees and the higher cost of cars due to government regulations and onto the fixed routes, fixed schedules and total dependence upon costly public transportation, going where you are told, when you are told and how you are told, by the ruling class of Clark County “empower citizens with more and better mobility options?”

Many of us tried to warn you and tried to tell you this “small” tax increase was only the beginning.

And now, C-TRAN Executive Director/CEO Jeff Hamm is standing before you, drooling and grinning while telling you, BOHICA (Bend Over, Here It Comes Again).

10 Comments to “C-Tran Already Drooling For Even More of Your Tax Dollars”

  1. I stand by what I said before the election. The biggest problem with C-Tran is long term employees like Jeff Hamm who never stand before the voters for anything, and the self-appointed “Board of C-Tran” which is made up of the usual tax and spend Ruling Class members who use the board as political cover to force decisions on the taxpayers in the name of “The Board” instead of themselves.

    The best solution I can think of is to convert C-Tran to a true public entity, with an elected 3 person Board of Directors just like the Port Commissions. A three person Board that oversees operations directly, and who have to answer to the voters directly would have a much better job of instituting some controls that mean something. Considering the amounts of money that C-Tran has increasing access to, along with the many risks some of us see by allowing Oregon’s TRIMET free access to Clark County, i see no other reasonable way to effectively rein this agency in.

    Voting to raise the sales tax is one matter, and actually collecting the revenue you expected is quite another. I predict a year from now we will be hearing even more sob stories and threats to cut bus service again because those revenues never materialized.

    Raising the sales tax again to pay for Loot Rail and Bus Loot Rail could well be the least of C-Tran’s problems if they are still in hock just trying to run a bus service.

  2. I’m sick to death over the way you uncivilized hounds keep peeing on fine public agencies like C-Tran, and the great people who do such a good job spending all that money. If it wasn’t for small minded people like the ones how hang out here, we could have a transit agency that is every bit as big and effective as Trimet!

    I’m also tired of the way this “website” constantly picks on the poor, hardworking, underpaid 99%ers at the Columbian. I’ve seen the vicious catty comments you people make and the nasty way you go after that poor man who tries to hold things together by the skin of his teeth, Lou Brancaccio. I’ve never seen a better looking young man and I just love the nice way he writes and the friendly open manner he always uses to try and educate all of you little people.

    You lost the election, so just pay up, sit down and shut up. Nobody wants to hear about this from you any more.

    And leave my Lou alone!

  3. Your “tongue-in-cheek” looks a lot more like a turd in your mouth, “Molly”. Is your last name Moeller? You fit his “style”.

  4. Bob Koski:
    I totally agree with you.

    “.. convert C-Tran to a true public entity, with an elected 3 person Board of Directors just like the Port Commissions. A three person Board that oversees operations directly, and who have to answer to the voters directly would have a much better job of instituting some controls that mean something.

    Now how can we make that happen.

  5. Jack:
    I’m pretty sure it is Lou Brancacio.

  6. I already know just who it is, Daniel.

    Funny thing about WordPress, with every comment I receive their IP Address and “Molly’s” is a perfect match to another commenter.

    I’m sure “Molly” is tongue in cheek 😉

  7. Interesting observation here:

    Eileen Brady was interviewed yesterday on the Rob Kremer tirade-fest, and apparently she didn’t come off as much of an alternative to the condo pushers that she’s running against. In response to a comment that folks in Vancouver, Washington don’t want light rail, Brady reportedly said, “Ah, they’ll love it.”

  8. Eileen Brady is the head/ceo of New Seasons Market, right? The reason why I believe they need a new bridge is that light rail will not work on the old teeter totter and it shakes so much that I don’t think they could effectively put it on that old bridge.

    So new bridge, light trail and damn the people!

    If Molly Laird would like to come back & have a civil discourse, I think some of us would here her out. But I do believe its just drivel put up to piss people off. Time to look at the real facts and factors instead of dealing with trolling impersonators…

    Bob, you have any ideas of places that might have tried what you are suggesting that is similar to our sized community? A separate transit board that has no direct political ties as C-tran does now?

    Maybe some of us can start working on it for next year or two and get the ball rolling?

  9. I believe there’s a member of Lou’s 1-party Fan Club here on the C, salivating away as they throw crocodile tears upon their keyboard while typing their attacks on Lew’s WordPress…an honest website that displays the TRUE meaning of freedom of expression.

    I hope Miss(ed) Laird has enough paper towels to wipe up the mess. (Lou or John, if that’s you…shame on you.)

  10. Psst. Goldie? 🙂 Molly is just one of Laird’s less inspired sock puppet admirers????? 🙂

    I don’t think Molly spends much time over at the newspaper inflicting and inciting divisive, invective chaos upon the county.

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