[tabi] Re: City Commission approves Nova 2010... but not a complete loss

  • From: "Chip Orange" <Corange@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 25 Mar 2010 15:17:37 -0400

Thanks so much Erica for the wonderful reporting!!!

I'd say everyone was influenced (all the commissioners and Mr. Garrison)
in a very positive manor, and for the betterment of blind individuals
and the public, with the exception of commissioner Lightsey!  Her
comments smack of "separate but equal" mentality that I find
unbelievable today!  If we're going to concentrate our voting efforts,
well, here's an opportunity I'd say to tighten our focus.






------------------------------

Chip Orange
Database Administrator
Florida Public Service Commission

Chip.Orange@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
(850) 413-6314

 (Any opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not
necessarily reflect those of the Florida Public Service Commission.)
 

> -----Original Message-----
> From: tabi-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
> [mailto:tabi-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of 
> ericamccaul@xxxxxxxxxxxx
> Sent: Thursday, March 25, 2010 1:49 PM
> To: tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
> Subject: [tabi] City Commission approves Nova 2010... but not 
> a complete loss
> 
> TABI and others:
> First, Owen and I would like to thank all of you who wrote 
> to, phoned, 
> or met with StarMetro staff and/or especially the City Commissioners. 
> Also, those of you who contributed ideas enhanced the process.
>     Of course you all know that "we lost", and I know many of 
> you feel-and 
> have now publicly expressed-that this was a "done deal" long 
> before the 
> public got involved. I don't disagree with any of this, and I 
> personally am displeased with this incomplete plan passing. However, 
> please do not fall prey to the idea that this is over, or that either 
> we have done no good, or that there is no further opportunity to have 
> influence. (more on these topics below)
>     For those of you who did not attend, or had to leave 
> before the voting 
> (around 8:20pm) here is a record of the Commissioners' votes and my 
> interpretation of their comments:
> Gillum: Approve, for the following reasons: 1. Like to see what could 
> be added to the system if the "budget neutral" restriction 
> was removed 
> (more night/Sunday service, greater frequency, etc.). 2. What 
> could we 
> do to provide information/allay riders' fears about whether 
> the bus is 
> on time, or if they've just missed it (at transfer points). [Sila's 
> point] 3. Suggest that it would be bad to put a half-baked plan into 
> effect, with hopes of improving it later. New riders will not be 
> attracted, for example, if the frequencies are too low. Let's try to 
> get a really solid plan from the start.
> Ziffer: For. 1. Need to get those sidewalks in. 2. Need to look at 
> improving night/Sunday service as soon as fiscally possible.
> Mustian: Approve. 1. Change is difficult, but needed.
> Marks: Approve. 1. Need to get those sidewalks in. They will help the 
> whole community, not just the bus riders. I never realized 
> before that 
> sidewalks are not merely a luxury. 2. We will at the least make this 
> ADA compliant; meeting a higher standard would be great.
> Lightsey: Approve. 1. Rather than configuring the bus system, 
> which is 
> meant for all riders, to the needs of the few [disabled], we need to 
> find out what alternatives they [the disabled] have. 2. I 
> preferred an 
> earlier version of the map, which provided better overall 
> service, and 
> had been less tailored by citizen input. 3. I would like to see night 
> and Sunday service expanded.
> 
> At least 4 of the Commissioners stressed that transfers need 
> to be free 
> under Nova, both to prevent a barrier for current riders and to not 
> dissuade new ones. This was, by the way, the cost model 
> StarMetro used 
> when calculating its revenue for Nova.
> 
> Also of note: Matt Brown of the Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce spoke 
> in favor of the plan, along the lines that change is needed 
> in general, 
> and that Nova would move workers to employment sites better. The 
> Chamber's address is: 100 North Duval Street, Tallahassee, Florida 
> 32301, phone 224-8116.
> 
> Mr. Garrison said that they are now shooting for 
> implementation by the 
> end of 2011. His "hope" is that seating at stops would be doubled 
> within the first 14 months of Nova implementation.
> 
> Attendees of note:
> Proponents: Kevin Davis, William and Sally Benjamin, Bruce Weaver 
> (though not a strong message), Tom Osteen (professional transit 
> planner), Greg Thompson (Chair of the TAC), Ed Osburn, Joanna Price 
> (CCOC), a representative from the Senior Center (sorry, I didn't get 
> her name)
> Opponents: Robert and Sila Miller, John Plescow, Lynn Evans, Linda 
> Pulliam, Owen & Erica McCaul, Charles Gainy, Amanda Bernath 
> (Lighthouse), Sue Ellen Smith, Carol Travis Rountree, Michael Banyas 
> (lives on Thomasville Rd. in an area that will lose service),
> 
> Some of you may have seen in yesterdays' Democrat an article about a 
> schoolchild being hit while presumably walking to a city bus stop 
> before school. Here is the link.
> Link to article on Tallahassee.com re: Nims 6th Grader hit by car:  
> http://www.tallahassee.com/article/20100324/NEWS01/3240317/101
> 0/Nims-sixth-grader-hit-by-car-in-critical-condition 
> Owen sent a copy of the story to Mr. Garrison and the City 
> Commissioners.
> 
> This is relevant to the following:
> After the hearing, Mr. Garrison came up to Owen and encouraged him to 
> stay involved with the project as it evolves.
> Owen said that he'd surely contact Garrison when the first bus rider 
> was hit by a car.
> Mr. Garrison replied, "I sure hope no one is hit by a car." 
> Owen said, 
> "Well, under the new system, it's inevitable."
> Ironically, at the time, Owen didn't know about the Nims 
> schoolgirl (or 
> the pedestrian who was hit on Tennessee Street within the last week).
> 
> I will end on a positive note, however. Lest you only think 
> of this as 
> a loss, here are some areas in which our input CLEARLY made a 
> positive 
> difference:
> 1. Sidewalk construction and repair has become a major focus, and the 
> emphasis is on getting them complete before Nova is 
> implemented. Usable 
> condition of complete sidewalks has been brought to the forefront of 
> the Commissioners'/Mayor's thinking.
> 2. Transfers will continue to be free.
> 3. Implementation has been pushed back to April 2011 at the earliest. 
> The approved plan calls for implementation by the end of 2011.
> 4. Service into Governor's Square Mall (not during peak hours, but at 
> least non-peak and weekends)
> 5. Service to the Senior Center on 7th Avenue (not just 
> Monroe Street).
> 6. Service to John Knox Rd.
> 
> So please, continue to stay informed and involved, and be vocal, 
> because it does pay off.
> Thank you,
> Erica
> 
> 
> Check out the TABI resource web page at 
> http://acorange.home.comcast.net/TABI
> and please make suggestions for new material.
> 
> 
> 
> if you'd like to unsubscribe you can do so through the 
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> 
Check out the TABI resource web page at http://acorange.home.comcast.net/TABI
and please make suggestions for new material.



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