January 31, 2013
From 3rd Congressional District Representative Jaime Herrera Beutler, to 17th Legislative District Senator Don Benton and to 14th Legislative District Senator Curtis King, chair of the Senate Transportation Committee, critical questions are beginning to be asked and recommendations made to clear up the many discrepancies surrounding the Columbia River Crossing project.
Senator Benton has long been a critic, having seen early on in the project that it could not live up to promises or expectations and would be a massive waste of tax dollars as planned. His calls and cries for reining the project and the steady flow of tax dollars in, over $160 Million to date, have been largely ignored and cast aside as what now appears to be the biggest swindle ever to hit Southwest Washington forged ahead amidst growing public opposition.
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January 8, 2013
Submitted by Robert Dean
Actions and public statements from C-Tran indicate that they are aware of RCW 81.104 but either did not take it seriously or forgot many of its provisions. Similarly, CRC officials acknowledged the Act but did not plan the Project accordingly.
CRC Co-Director, Don Wagner, observed in 2010 that each one year delay in construction costs the public $100 million with 3% inflation. When he made that observation he was expecting the C-Tran public vote on funding operations to take place that fall. If he had been familiar with the Act he would not have had that expectation.
C-Tran has recently scurried to comply with the Act:
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December 17, 2012
Time and again voters have let it be known that extending Portland, Oregon’s financially troubled light rail into Clark County and rebuilding Fourth Plain Boulevard to accommodate a Bus Rapid Transit feed to that proposed light rail line is out of the question. We do not want it!
Time and again C-TRAN, the Columbia River Crossing project and certain leaders within the community have shown that they do not care what voters say, they are going to build it with voters and taxpayers paying for it, come hell or high water, no matter what.
Totally corrupting the democratic process is of no concern to those proponents. Like a small child wanting a piece of candy in a grocery store, their attitude is just ‘take what you want now,’ any way you can get it.
The recent defeat of Proposition 1, to fund operations and maintenance of the light rail extension we have been repeatedly denied a vote on was thought to be a blow to C-TRAN’s efforts at empire building. But we see again that our vote denying them another tax increase to fund their dream is little more than a bump in the road to them.
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May 17, 2012
Probably no one in Clark County understands the futility and frustrations associated with Vancouver holding block veto power over the C-Tran Board of Directors than does city council member, Jeanne Stewart, who was unceremoniously dumped from her long held seat on the C-Tran Board at the direction of Mayor Tim Leavitt.
Ms. Stewart had the audacity to join with the rest of the non-Vancouver city council members of the Board and vote to split ballot measures pertaining to continuing funding of C-Tran with a sales tax increase from another sales tax increase to pay for operations & maintenance of Portland’s financially plagued light rail being extended into Clark County, a position the council adopted well after they dumped her off of the C-Tran Board.
At issue was the city council policy of the 3 representatives from Vancouver on the C-Tran Board being required to all cast votes in accordance with any position adopted by the council over concerns for citizen’s views. In effect, the Vancouver city council selected to give itself power over the rest of the county served by C-Tran.
Since the majority of the council most often sides with Mayor Leavitt when it comes to his strong desire to stack Portland’s light rail on our backs, holding block veto power over the Board of Directors at C-Tran and the council policy of requiring the 3 Vancouver representatives to the Board, you could say that one man, Tim Leavitt, holds excessive power in regards to the direction of our transportation policies in Clark County.
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November 20, 2011
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.
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November 11, 2011
Submitted by Professor Robert Dean
Boldt: Hello! Commissioner Marc Boldt here. What can I do you for? (Aside: I always like to have a little fun with people).
Caller: Marc, Jeff Hamm.
Boldt: Jeff Hamm?
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