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Author Topic: TransLink shake-up in the works  (Read 1060 times)

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TransLink shake-up in the works
« on: Mar 10 06 12:18 »
[TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 width=500 align=center border=0][TBODY][TR][TD class=fullstoryTitle]TransLink shake-up in the works [/TD][/TR][TR][TD class=credits vAlign=top height=30]Last updated Mar 9 2006 09:37 AM PST
[A href="http://www.cbc.ca/news/credit.html"][FONT color=#003300]CBC News[/FONT][/A][/TD][/TR][TR][TD class=stories]B.C. Transportation Minister Kevin Falcon says he's not happy with the way TransLink is being run, and has appointed a panel to review the way the Lower Mainland's transit authority is governed,

[TABLE align=right border=0][TBODY][TR][TD class=caption align=middle][img height=150 hspace=2 src="http://www.cbc.ca/gfx/Vancouver/photos/041130_falcon.jpg" width=200 border=1]

Kevin Falcon (File photo) [/TD][/TR][/TBODY][/TABLE]Falcon says there is too much parochial thinking by board members particularly during the debate about the rapid-transit Canada Line, formerly known as RAV.

"There was too much focus on local backyard politics, as opposed to the ability to think about the broader regional interest," said the minister.

"There's no ability there to develop the skill-set to understand major, multi-billion projects. And I think that's part of what undercuts the public confidence in the decisions that are being made."

Opposition within TransLink to the $2-billion project delayed the start of construction, putting hundreds of millions of dollars at risk. [TABLE align=right border=0][TBODY][TR][TD class=caption align=middle][img height=150 hspace=2 src="http://www.cbc.ca/gfx/Vancouver/photos/040618_rav1.jpg" width=200 border=1]

TransLink board in 2004 during
the RAV-line debate
[/TD][/TR][/TBODY][/TABLE]

[UL class=newslinks][LI][SPAN class=date][FONT size=1]FROM JUNE 18, 2004: [/FONT][/SPAN][A href="http://vancouver.cbc.ca/regional/servlet/View?r=-620811912&filename=bc_ravnoon20040618.html" target=_self][FONT color=#003300]TransLink board kills RAV, afain [/FONT][/A][/LI][/UL][UL class=newslinks][LI][SPAN class=date][FONT size=1]FROM JUNE 30, 2004: [/FONT][/SPAN][A href="http://www.cbc.ca/bc/story/bc_rav_pm20040630.html" target=_self][FONT color=#003300]RAV wins TransLink approval [/FONT][/A][/LI][/UL]It is governed by a board of mayors and municipal councillors, and it has powers to raise revenue through transit fees, gas taxes and property taxes.

The chair of the review panel is former Langley mayor Marlene Grinnell.

The other members of the panel are civil engineer Dan Doyle who is a former deputy minister of transportation, and Wayne Duzita, a corporate vice-president with a transportation background.

Mixed reaction to review

The NDP's transportation critic is worried a change in the way TransLink operates will lead to less accountability with provincial appointees instead of municipal politicians.

"What we can tell, is the direction the minister is pushing. And the minister is pushing away from accountability and democracy towards his own agenda for transportation in the region," said David Chudnovsky.

But TransLink chair Malcolm Brodie welcomes the review, saying the transportation authority needs the confidence of taxpayers.

"I do believe there are many, many positive aspects in the governance and mandate and the funding sources for TransLink. But I think it needs a good look, and I think it will stand scrutiny, though there are bound to be some changes that are suggested."

The Richmond mayor also counter's Falcon's criticism of board members for being parochial when dealing with projects such as the Canada Line, noting many municipalities who had no direct interest in the line supported it.

The panel will report to the minister by the fall.[/TD][/TR][/TBODY][/TABLE]
"We can't stop here. This is bat country."

 

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