Who do they listen to?

December 17th, 2013 by Ken

Regional government in Thurston County is controlled by some 20 boards and commissions that govern just about everything we do as residents of the county.

And, each of these 20 regional boards and commissions undertake regular evaluations of their roles and responsibilities.   They look at current service and try to forecast what changes may be necessary for future operations.

Unfortunately, most of the time, these boards and commissions never hear from the public.   Often, the only feedback they receive is from a citizen’s advisory council, or from those who make a living from the board’s actions.

Currently, Intercity Transit is looking at its future and trying to determine what it should do with that in mind.

Federal grant funding for construction of facilities and for the purchase of rolling stock (make that buses) has gone away.  If the transit system wants to expand it has to do so within existing revenue or raise additional local taxes.

It can raise money by increasing fares or it can go to the voters for an increase in the local sales tax.

Currently the transit commission is receiving pressure from its citizen’s advisory group to got out for a tax increase in the coming year.

Intercity Transit is looking at a number of questions.   Should it continue to spend money to support bicycle commuter contests and youth educational programs?

Should it expand its fixed transit routes or its Dial A Lift program?

Should buses be allowed signal priority just like medics, fire equipment and police?

These are just some of the questions the transit system is wrestling with.  So far, all of the input they’re received is from their appointed citizen’s committee or from people wanting transit to raise more money and provide more services.

I really don’t expect you to run out to a public meeting on transit or to comment on transit’s future.

I just want you to know that it’s going to cost you more money next year – – if you don’t.

Posted in Government, History, Informational, Local Politics, The Real News

(comments are closed).