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The Golden Rule in the National Transportation Policy is “efficiency.” So, why do we force motorists and taxpayers to subsidize the most inefficient transport available to us: public sector transit. 

How many Grand Jury Reports are ignored, get shoveled under the rug? How badly should we shaft motorists to keep empty bus seats moving? Why do we pretend that public sector transit is efficient? If it was a horse, we would shoot it. 

Why don’t the elected people tell the unelected “delegates,” directors of the transit agencies, that we must reverse course? Fraud, waste and abuse at the transit agencies undermine our goal of efficient transportation.

It’s time for a change. Give us truth in transportation. It’s long overdue. 

Joseph P. Thompson, Esq. 

Past-Chair, Legislation Committee, Transportation Lawyers Assn. 

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  1. Editor,
    I hope that you are well, enjoying the New Year. We expect that subsidy recipients will support more transit services paid for by others. What we don’t expect is that our government will conceal the truth in transportation from the taxpayers, who pay the taxes that make it possible for them to operate transit boondoggles. In our Public Utilities Code we find the Transit Development Act, where the requirements for farebox recovery rates are prescribed. The truth is in the details. Bernie Madoff and Enron used “off-book accounting” methods to conceal the full extent of the losses they sustained. How would it be if our own government did that to us?
    FTX Bitcoin scam is, according to some reports, the “scam of the century.” Maybe. But do our leaders (appointed “directors” of the transit agencies) conceal the losses that they sustain by means of false financials?
    If they are required to net 10% of their operating costs from their patrons (riders), do they include taxpayers’ subsidies from sales taxes in calculating their income from operations? Wouldn’t such a practice undermine the integrity of their financial
    reports to the voters? What creative accounting is going on at the transit agencies at the expense of motorists paying gas taxes to fund the transit agencies’ operations? Are there any elected officials who would dare to ask the question?
    What about a Public Records Act request by the City Council to the VTA? Or by SBC BOS to SBC COG? Would that get to the bottom of the cover-up? Don’t know because they never seek to know why the taxpayers are being shafted by the “directors” unelected appointees to the transit agencies.
    We continue the quest for truth in transportation, and I am very happy to have you join me in the discussion.
    Joe Thompson
    (408) 848-5506
    Past-President (1999-2001, 2006), Gilroy-Morgan Hill Bar Assn.
    E-Mail: [email protected]


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