While I am all for accountability, I am not sure that an "elected
official" will be any better. Who did we have in mind? Maybe a former
NOPESorry Guv. you know the phrase "you can put lipstick on a
pig but its' still......."Mismanagement at UTA is beyond
ridiculous. The legislature needs to either replace/fire the WHOLE upper
management or move the whole mess under the control of UDOT.The ONLY
thing that has kept UTA afloat is their lobbyists at the legislature. BIG TIME
lobbyists, BTW who are being paid by OUR tax dollars.Just replacing
a couple of "board" members won't cut it. The "board"
never has been anything but a rubber stamp for ANYTHING management want
anyway.Any first semester accounting student would have been able to
tell that the choo-choo trains weren't funded properly regarding their
long-term maintenance and that they are a massive drain on the budget (besides
the bosses' salaries).City leaders wholeheartedly supported the
choo-choo trains as long as UTA promised to bring them to THEIR cities.Those opposed to the massive malfeasance are starting to get involved by
writing to their legislators and joining together to make mass transit more cost
effective for everyone.WHY can't the Guv. help rather than
brushing the whole thing aside??
I have had this "opinion" for 30+ years. And almost ALL of the bus
drivers I have talked with [Salt Lake City, then Seattle, and back to SLC] agree
with me. "Management" needs to step out of their "paid/perk"
SUV's, and use the system that they "manage" for 1 month during the
summer, but most importantly, 1 month in the "dead of winter".
I agree with the Governor. Right now no one is accountable to the voters.
Wrong, Governor. Having senior Government officials on the UTA board
has helped UTA get special legislation and tax hikes through. Down in Utah
County, County Commission Chair, Larry Ellertson actually pushed for and voted
on the tax hikes to build FrontRunner South, while he was Chairman of the Board
at UTA.Mister Hughes still doesn't have a clue as to what needs
to be done. I doubt that he has really studied all of this audit and he
certainly does not understand the implications in the last Utah Legislature
audit, 2012-001, pointing to UTA's precarious financial picture.Even though he represents Draper, he is clueless about the broken promises for
bus service in Sandy and Draper. There should have been bus routes everywhere,
but instead there is just a few pieces of routes mostly operating only 5 days a
Replace the board with people from the general public elected every two years
with no one eligible to be re-elected. Then require that UTA meet ridership
goals and provide bus service to within 2 miles of all neighborhoods in their
service areas.No private company could have survived while gutting
their main product - bus service - to build a hobby railroad. The public owns
UTA and supports it with tax dollars but we are not getting a reasonable return
on our investment. We tax the poor to provide transit service but provide the
best service to those who can afford to not use UTA.
"In the past, UTA offered later services hours under a pilot project....
."This UTA statement is not true. Back in the early to
mid-90's UTA had lots of late running buses. They had a separate schedule
called, "Nite Ride"."Offering later service hours is not
just a quality of life issue, Cragun said, calling it a necessity for
many...".Mr. Cragun is referring to the "transit
dependent" among us, for whom a reasonably well run transit system is a
lifeline. UTA used to claim, before the TRAX bandwagon got rolling,
that 80% of the bus riders were "Transit Dependent". Now, they have
flipped what was the intended role of UTA when Sam Taylor and Dixie Leavitt got
that first 1/4-cent tax... that UTA must serve this important social function.
Recently, UTA claimed that 80% of its riders were not dependent on transit, but
had alternatives. Now, only 20% of riders are "Transit Dependent". AS UTA executives gleefully pocketed their bonuses ranging from three to
seven times the maximum allowed at UDOT, They conveniently forgot to maintain
the foundation for all transit of a well run bus system that fulfills the values
of the community.
I don't know what the answer is but it seems that since its inception the
UTA board generally has gone along with what management has asked for including
approving obscene salaries and benefits for management.To anybody
who has paid attention to this fiasco it is easy to see that UTA is out of
control of the taxpayer and at the mercy of those in charge.
Like that will help! Sorry Gov. another attempt to pass the buck and expand
governments reach. Don't forget the legislature will want to be paid for
this perk as well and then there is the political corruption and old boy game
playing. It is time to do some serious thinking about what would be best for the
UTA board and the public and stop the hip shooting.
when are they going to bring service back to riveton and blufdale. longest
commute times and we don't have any busses. oh and they have no one that is
over them. so they have no customer service.
What Governor Herbert should do immediately is to demand the replacement of 3 or
4 of the more inept... longer serving... members of the UTA Board, and replace
them with highly competent civil engineers from UDOT. The most
needed profession needed on the UTA Board is Civil Engineers who have
transportation engineering expertise.