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Someone is opposing the Metro referendum

I suppose it was too optimistic to hope that the Metro referendum would not get any organized opposition.

Opponents of Metro’s $3.5 billion bond referendum have formed a political action committee to lead a grass-roots campaign to curtail what they say is wasteful spending by the regional transit agency.

“To ask for $3.5 billion is irresponsible,” said Bill Frazer, one of the organizers of the Responsible Houston PAC and a former Houston city controller candidate.

[…]

Opponents used the Post Oak project as the backdrop for their announcement Tuesday, noting that Metro is asking for money to build 75 miles of bus rapid transit in the region despite having nothing to show Houstonians are eager to hop aboard. Critics also noted Metro’s newest light rail lines have never delivered the ridership officials promised when they started construction and failed to build many of the things promised voters in 2003 — as they used the $640 million voters approved to build three rail lines and did not add the park and ride locations and increased bus service promised by the ballot item.

“Before we do another blank check, someone needs to hold someone accountable for the past,” said Wayne Dolcefino, a media consultant that helped organize Tuesday’s announcement.

With so many areas in need of improved street drainage, Frazer said transit officials should invest their money there — something he said is possible because Metro’s agreement with cities promises 25 percent of the transit sales tax for street and drainage projects. Nothing, Frazer said, prohibits Metro from spending more than a quarter of the money for streets.

Note that “organized” does not mean “coherent”, or “logical”, or “sensible”. Last I checked, Houston already had a funding system in place for street and drainage improvement, which as I recall from his campaigns for Controller Bill Frazer opposed. Drainage is certainly a vital thing, but it doesn’t improve mobility. I’m also old enough to remember the 2012 election, in which there was a referendum that not only reaffirmed Metro’s one quarter share of the transit sales tax, it granted Metro a full share of the revenue growth on top of what was then being collected. The rest of this is largely unsupported claptrap, which will appeal to the kind of person who thinks any of this makes sense, and nobody else. I’ll be sure to look for their 30-day and 8-day finance reports.

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7 Comments

  1. C.L. says:

    Whatever Dolcefino is against, I’m for, and whatever Dolcefino is for, I’m against. I just think that’s how balance in this world is kept in check.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Metro’s plan subsidizes transportation for the suburbs. More of a highway construction plan (more HOV lanes) than a transit plan. And the idea of a blank check is problematic for me (e.g. gold line). They can “promise” us one thing and spend the money on something else.

    Also, how can they even consider building more BRT when the one in uptown is not even finished or in operation. They need to learn from the past experiences, usage, and customer input since BRT is new in COH.

    If you live in suburbs, this is a definite YES. If you live in the city of Houston, I say consider voting NO. (Either way, this will pass since Houston voters are stupid. How did Pay Parity pass? )

  3. Susan Egrets says:

    It passes because Metro gets to spend 10 million of taxpayer money for advertisement

  4. Ross says:

    @Susan, are you saying Metro shouldn’t get to spend any money explaining what the bonds are intended for?

  5. Jules says:

    I’m opposed to paying Texas Central’s “last mile” costs. I will vote against.

  6. Susan Egrets says:

    @Ross NO!!!!!! That 10 million should be used for building more rail. This Democrat is tired of the corruption. I voted for Turner 4 years ago. I swear y’all going to make me vote for Buzbee.

  7. Adoile Turner III says:

    It will pass you see people always whine and beg for expensive and extremely useless elevated rail in here but BRT gets you way more bang for your buck so COH residents should def also be for it. My only issue with the plan is the total lack of regard for Westheimer to be a real BRT corridor with well over 13,000 daily riders. Trips Downtown-Greenway-Uptown-Westchase-Energy Corridor and evening on to Katy/Fulshear. And a serious call to East Harris County cities to join the service area. That area has one single line and it runs as a major frequent route with well over 7000 riders daily. But i guess they’ll just stay left behind with there small town system they have now with barely any connections to the rest of the metro area.