Chuck Reed, which two years ago endorsed against the 2006 Measure A, expressed disappoinment last Friday that VTA couldn't carry on Ron Gonzales' "legacy":
"Clearly, BART is the No. 1 project," said Reed, a VTA board member. "That is what people voted for and it needs to go all way to Santa Clara. It doesn't make any sense to stop at Berryessa."
With the failure of the 2006 Measure A, clearly the voters no longer believe in the delusion promised in the 2000 Measure A. VTA tried to ignore the issue for years. While it is good for VTA to admit that the tax revenue is much lower than originally projected, and that BART costs a lot more, it is not good enough until the VTA board actually wakes up and does the right thing.
Since 2000, BART to San Jose has been a curse on VTA. Without digging any dirt for the BART extension, VTA's misguided priority has already screwed its passengers (especially the disabled) and its front line employees. Unfortunately, politicians like Chuck Reed know how to pander transit riders (and to others like the Vietnamese community) and then screw them once the politicians are voted into office.
Although other projects such as light rail extension to Eastridge and Caltrain double tracking in the South County are all wasteful and deserve to be on the chopping block, the BART extension is by far the most harmful, and that harm doesn't end once the construction completes. It is dishonest for the VTA Board to think that it can afford BART by getting rid of other non-BART projects, wasteful or not.
Chuck Reed, and the rest of the VTA Board, are too chickened to get rid of that curse.