Letters to the Editor

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TRANSIT: Agencies’ services need to be consolidated

Letter by William H. Cosgrove, Tacoma on March 11, 2013 at 12:34 pm with No Comments »
March 11, 2013 12:38 pm

Re: “Transit may eliminate 40 vanpools” (TNT, 3-11).

The elimination of vanpools is a sad indication of a well-meant government program sinking into the morass of multiple bureaucracies.

These vanpools – created to reduce traffic, the need for parking and a reduction of pollution – are a good idea. But as the region grew, each municipality needed a transit agency. Eventually, as these communities grew, we were left with overlapping and redundant systems.

Pierce County, King County, Snohomish County, Kitsap County and Sound Transit each has a territory with resulting management and bureaucracies fighting to survive. Each has six-figure management compensations and overlapping programs like the vanpools. How ridiculous that a King County van could continue to operate out of Pierce County while the South Sound van could not.

Taxpayers have spoken in Pierce County, denying increased taxation to support the system. Do we think that King County taxpayers are happy about supporting Pierce residents in their vanpool commute?

Politicians from Washington, D.C,. to our own county have told us that the sky would fall when asked to reduce their spending. The results never actually resemble the hollow threats. While some programs may be affected, it is our government’s responsibility to seek efficiency first and increased taxes later.

I suggest someone in leadership pick up a phone and begin the process of consolidating services in the Pugeplex before the system collapses completely. The taxpayers are tired of business as usual by our government. It is time for new ideas and creative leadership. Get to it.

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