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Good question.

The Stanwood-Camano News reported 5 days ago they were not told during the loss of the Camano-to-Everett Connector about the depth of Island Transit’s fiscal problems, “All this was developing even as Rose and the board were talking about cutting the Everett Connector, but no one mentioned it in interviews.”  The same allegation has been made by the Whidbey Newsgroup.  If I may quote their syndicated newsstory:

A reporter contacted Rose and a couple of IT’s board members about budget problems a month ago, but none of them mentioned the impending layoffs, widespread route cuts or that the finance director was terminated because of the cash flow problems.

Rose told the reporter that the “county connector” in Skagit County was being modified and Everett connector canceled due to cuts in state transportation funding. She now says she didn’t realize at that time that deep cuts would be necessary to right the ship.

These cuts were promised to only last a year in many public statements.  However, Oak Harbor City Councilman Jim Campbell who serves on the Island Transit board made a statement at the 6 August Oak Harbor City Council meeting that should trouble many of us.  About 1:52 into a YouTube clipping are the assertions the rescue plan has not been presented to the Island Transit Board as a board and will require longer to as Martha Rose would say, “come out of the clouds in about a year.”  Therefore exists the serious, genuine question does misinformation from Island Transit continue – which makes me individually take the editorial position we just might find more fiscal booby traps and possibly similarities to Enron’s downfall.  Below is my attempt to embed the video:

There also has been the admission that 1:27 into the YouTube clip of what the open government community calls ‘serial meetings’ about this plan.  Having each board member meet with the Executive Director to talk about a plan very much in the public interest behind closed doors is at the least impugnable.  At the most, against the Washington State Open Public Meetings Act (OPMA), RCW 42.30.  Hopefully the Washington State Auditor’s Office (SAO) will investigate.  After I hit publish and address any grammatical errors here, will fire off a head’s up to my SAO contact.

Finally mark the date, time and location: Friday, August 22, 2014, at 9:00 AM at the Island Transit Operations & Administration Building, 19758 SR 20, Coupeville, WA is the next Island Transit Board Meeting coupled to – and please swallow before you read this – “A Public Hearing to receive input on Island Transit’s Six-Year Transit Development Plan. … The regularly scheduled Monthly Business Meeting will be held following the conclusion of the Public Hearing”.  Six-Year Transit Development Plan now?  Seriously, when we do not know if Island Transit faces the threat of extinction Island Transit’s going to plan 6 years ahead?

Being I’d promised 500 words or less, stopping here.  Sincerely welcome and appreciate your comments!  I will do my best to reply within 12 hours or less, thank you!

3 Replies to “North by Northwest 02: Is Island Transit Still Misleading Folks?”

  1. P.S. I will get something up positive about transit – namely Amtrak Cascades sometime Tuesday.

    I also will have a Paine Field update sometime this week.

    Frankly this post was one I decided to make only after the full impact of Jim Campbell’s comments sunk in.

  2. “… possibly similarities to Enron’s downfall?”

    Yeah, just like the 1993 abandonments of Valmeyer, IL and Rhineland, MO have “similarities” to the fall of Rome.

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