People that know me understand that over the past years I have spent quite a bit of time studying Trimet management and the intricacies of their operation.
I associate with others that also have spent a great deal of time studying the operations of Trimet, we have together sort of a “Trimet club” so to speak.
The blog that I am associated with is not just my material; the things you see on that blog are actually supplied by quite a few other people besides me.
Any subject matter that you study over a period of time gives that person an unique insight into that particular topic.
So I consider myself somewhat of a “authority” at evaluating Trimet policies and public statements.
That is why I think it’s a fairly safe bet that the new “budget crisis” is just another smoke and mirrors campaign dreamed up by the executives of this organization then foisted on the public and the employees.
Think back to the first round of “crisis”, remember, the threatened “lay offs”, the “furloughs”, the “demotions”.
There was no new bus drivers hired for two years. (Alas the management continued growing however)
Remember all the gnashing of teeth during that time, I sure do.
Then not too long ago “everything was ok again”.
All the demoted personnel were once again promoted back to their original ‘white shirted’ positions, a whole slew of ‘top executives’ were hired, and bus operators were once again being hired in mass.
Now here we are again, back to the ‘we are going to be in a budget crunch’.
Either the management is completely incompetent, or they are intentionally manipulating public opinion.
I pick the latter. I said after the first round of cuts that this would not be the end of the cuts, meaning the bus cuts, and it appears that I was correct.
The unemployment picture is supposedly better than it had been, but now they are facing another ‘crisis’.
I think they are facing a crisis alright, a crisis of ‘expansion management’.
Fred Hansen came in here and along with Neil MacFarlane decided this transit agency was now going to be a method of “economic development” and social engineering. Getting people to where they needed to go became secondary.
The planners also miscalculated when considering available tax revenue. Apparently they thought that tax revenue would continue growing each and every year to god knows when.
The fact that all of a sudden tax revenue missed projections hit them by surprise.
In 1991 Trimet received $82,549,119 in employment taxes
In 2010 that figure was $236,022,862.
That’s about a 300% increase in revenue in ten years.
With three times the amount of revenue available 10 years ago, they now are preaching “we are in trouble” to the public and the employees.
So who’s really to blame in the current crisis?
Obviously management bungling has created the crisis, the more money they get the more money they spend.
The lame attempt to blame it all on union health benefits is pathetic.
This latest public relations ‘tool’ that was developed by the Trimet ministry of propaganda is nothing but more bullshit coming from an agency that has become expert in slinging the bullshit.
Who knows what the truth really is.