Measure D: VTA

Voting for Measure D would mean never having to vote on Measure C again. It would eliminate the legal requirement that VTA seek an advisory vote on its transit plan every six years. In place of the referendum (which is only an advisory vote) Measure D would create a “Citizens’ Watchdog Committee” to review the plan.
Given its spotty history (including a recent slap from the Grand Jury), it’s difficult to vote to eliminate any oversight of VTA. But the fact is, no voter ever read the 200-plus-page VTA plan anyway—this year, it’s not even done. Smarter to set up a watchdog group, and then watchdog the watchdogs. And let this be a vote against governing by referendum.

3 Comments

  1. yikes. anybody who’s ever worked on citizen’s watchdog groups (try working on school bond oversight committees) knows that this almost always becomes wolf-watching-the-hen-house, as the organization being oversought ends up stacking the committee with shills. Or—worse yet—forcing out people who actually do their oversight jobs. This one smells bad, especially given VTA’s utterly dishonest projections and funding requests. Too much money at stake here, this requires serious systemic citizen review.

  2. RGD is correct when mentioning that such committees end up being straw men and women to the agency they monitor.  More dirt on Measure D can be found here:

    http://www.vtaridersunion.org/causes/no_bcd_2008.html#noond

    Remember: you have to be nominated by the city, another VTA committee (who, like its board, has members you cannot elect nor recall), or by business and labor groups to be a part of that committee.

    Given VTA’s history of ignoring its own committees, it makes no common sense for voters to give away their say in how their money is spent on transportation planning.

    As much as advisory measures are expensive, voters need to preserve their rights they voted for back in 1976.  Hence, a big NO on Measure D.

  3. Eugene Bradley in Santa Cruz is correct. A recent state audit found that VTA ignores its advisory committees. In fact, they did not bring the Measure B sales tax increase to the advisory committees before placing it on the ballot. Why would we delegate any “oversight” we currently have to a committee that VTA routinely ignores?

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