Meanwhile, Out Back at the Woodshed

by lewwaters

Woodshed 1Larry Patella has been a staunch advocate for the people of Clark County & Vancouver, Washington. He has been in the forefront of many battles with the City Council’s desires to separate taxpayers from their hard-earned paychecks over several years.

And circumstances have proven him correct many times over, even though ultimately, taxpayers have ended up stuck with a bill they shouldn’t have. The list is too numerous to post here, but all too often his warnings have fallen on deaf Democrat ears and we taxpayers have ended up with the bills.

But, when he is wrong, he’s wrong and when he is too stubborn to admit it, even though several show him where he is wrong, I must defend what is right, let the chips fall where they may.

As has been previously shown, now that the CRC light rail project lies in a deep comatose state, hopefully to be left to die very soon, Washington State Republicans Ann Rivers and Liz Pike have extended an effort to do what should have been done some 15 years ago to solve our problems of crossing the Columbia River, open an honest and candid discussion with Oregon officials: Burning Bridges or Building Bridges?

For some reason, Patella apparently misread or misunderstood their intent and sent out an email blast ripping into the two ladies, that email very adequately scolded by Kelly Hinton on his blog, Patella blows it on the Bistate Bridge Coalition issue, thanks to the lies of the Lazy C.

Adding to that, Liz Pike replied to Larry in order to “set the record straight,” informing him, among many points;

• Sen. Rivers and I worked very hard to kill the CRC project because it included costly light rail that was adamantly opposed by an overwhelming majority of Clark County citizens. It was also a flawed bridge design of substandard height which would have restricted current and future river users, and the entire project was fraught with waste and corruption, as demonstrated by a recent partial state audit which showed many millions of dollars in questionable expenses.

• Our Bi-State Bridge Coalition (BBC) is an effort to bring legislators together from both sides of the river to identify solutions, including a third and possible fourth new crossing to relieve traffic congestion and improve freight mobility between Oregon and Southwest Washington.

• Sen. Rivers and I have NEVER advocated tearing down the current I-5 bridge as you mistakenly assert.

• At no time has Sen. Rivers or I advocated to restart discussions for ANY LIGHT RAIL operations between our two states. We have been among the most active opponents against light rail extending into Clark County, so any assertions otherwise make absolutely no sense and are completely false.

Liz added, “Mr. Patella, you certainly do not have to agree with the pro-active approach that Sen. Rivers and I are taking to find positive transportation solutions which our community can rally around. However, to undermine our efforts at the initial outset with your own set of ‘facts,’ which totally misrepresent us and our intentions to a wide audience throughout Southwest Washington is wrong” along with a request for him to also ‘set the record straight’.”

How disappointing it was to open my email this morning and find from Larry;

I have been taken to the Woodshed!!!‏

Good morning,

I have been getting a lot of flak and have been taken to the woodshed for having the audacity to question the need or the reasons for a Bistate Bridge Coalition.

Why? When we have not yet received any information from any State or Local Politician concerning the status of the Secret and in my opinion Illegal contract between Clark County’s C-Tran and Portland Tri-Met that will allow Portland’s Tri – Met to:

1. Invade Vancouver and Clark County and use our eminent domain laws to confiscate private property.

2. Build, with Vancouver and Clark County Dollars, the CRC complete with Light Rail.

3. Impose outrageous Bridge Tolls for Vancouver & Clark County voters and taxpayers to pay. Oregon gets to keep all the money.

4. To fine Vancouver and Clark County Voters and Taxpayers $5,000,000 dollars if we don’t allow ourselves to be DICTATED to.


Not exactly setting any record straight on his erroneous claims from the day before.

I brought up the same concern some time ago over that contract and the subsequent actions left me frustrated and not too pleased with some officials (a discussion for another time), but as long as light rail is not part of any project, the contract is not in force.

And yes, it should be terminated, in my opinion.

But the contract is between C-Tran and Trimet, not the legislature.

I can only imagine it will be mentioned in discussions, but have no firsthand knowledge of that.

Still, as noted, as long as light rail is out of the equation, it is not in force.

And, neither Ann Rivers nor Liz Pike are advocating light rail, both remaining very strongly against it.

I appreciate the many years of Larry Patella’s advocacy on behalf of citizens and believe we would be better off had some of his cries been heeded years ago.

But that does not excuse his sending out an email blast with wrong information concerning the intent of setting in motion the discussion that should have been before light rail took precedence on river crossings.

If Larry is being taken to the woodshed today, it is because he got it wrong this time and should correct it.

4 Comments to “Meanwhile, Out Back at the Woodshed”

  1. Maybe he’s just having a bad day or two…or (more likely) too embarrassed at his original misunderstanding of the intent of Rivers and Pike to acknowledge his error…but hey, that’s never happened to me!


  2. Anyone can make a mistake. An apology shows a capacity for humility and correction.


  3. My conversation with Larry today was worthwhile. He as well as I would like to make sure that the contract between C-Tran and Tri-Met is cancelled before anyone talks about any crossing between the two cities. We on this side of the Columbia river need to get C-Tran to become more transparent with taxpayer money. You can’t put up an initiative have it passed and use it for something else. That is definitely not moral or honest. Needed is an administrator that follows the will of the people and the people don’t want light rail. I stand with Larry in the woodshed.


  4. While I agree that the contract needs to be terminated, that matter lies between C-Tran and Trimet, not the legislatures.

    The effort Rivers & Pike have launched is just to establish a long overdue dialogue between the two states to actually solve the problems concerning river crossings.

    It is not to make demands, force light rail or a third bridge just yet, but to establish common ground and have the dialogue that should have been 15 years ago that never happened as everybody jumped on the light rail bandwagon.

    We have problems in adequate river crossings that need solutions. We will kill any chance at actually solving them if we enter into this initial discussion with our backs as stiff as the light rail advocates were.

    If we really want that contract gone, which I do, we need to begin electing people that will sit on the C-Tran Board we can trust and fire Jeff Hamm.

    You and Larry need to actually read Liz’s letter or speak with either her or Ann before going off half-cocked over this.


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