Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Truth Will Out

If there is one certainty in this world, it is that the truth will always come out in life, in government or in politics. Sometimes it takes a little longer than one would like, but in the end, the truth arrives.

A number of years ago, ACHD made the decision to ream out the West Bench by installing a five lane road on Ustick where only three had been. The area between Cole Rd and Five Mile Rd was, and remains, substantially residential with some mixed use - an eclectic area. No one, except ACHD, really wanted the road. At that time, ACHD did not listen to the community, in fact, there was never one public hearing on the project - it was rammed down the public's throat.

One of the suspicions the residents had was that the reason for widening Ustick was to forestall the widening of Fairview Ave. Fairview had been in the plans for many, many years to be widened to seven lanes from its current five lanes. You can see as you travel down Fairview that there are currently places where there is room for extra lanes. Well, it would be much more expensive to acquire land on commercialized Fairview than to just sucker residents along Ustick (and sucker some they did.)

And that suspicion, when voiced to ACHD staff and ACHD Commissioners, was pooh poohed. "We wouldn't do that, that's not true, we would never do that, that's not the plan" blah blah blah. I mean really, how could anyone think that ACHD would actually lie to citizens?

Well, as I said, the truth will out.

Under Draft B of the FY2011-2015 Work Plan ( list of future projects), on page 2 under Fairview Avenue, it specifically states "Although Fairview Avenue scores high in the prioritization for widening to seven lanes between Meridian and Cole, staff recommends delaying any programming of these projects until the widening of the Franklin and Ustick corridors is complete. Once these corridors are complete, it may delay the need to widen Fairview for some time." (emphasis added)

Now many of the staff members working on this years Five Year Plan were not involved way back when statements were made to the contrary. But four Commissioners were and they were called on it today by me. The wording will be amended to reflect that Fairview is still in the works. I'll be interested to see how it looks in the final draft.

I understand that things change. But honesty should not be mutable. Government can only survive with the consent of the governed. When those who are governed are lied to, we are doomed. And the truth always is uncovered.


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