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Friday, October 30, 2009

Should Mass-Transit Free Rides for Seniors End, Be Modified or Continue? First, Let's End the CTA

As legislators across Illinois debate the issue of free rides for seniors for mass-transit, including CTA, Metra and Pace, there is one thing that will not be discussed, but should. When will legislators have the courage the end the CTA?

CTA (aka "Chicago Transit Authority"), the dysfunctional transit agency run by Chicago Mayor Daley has been a disaster by any measure, but for some reason, we keep pouring money into the endless financial hole.

Transportation experts say today's Chicago metropolitan region is not just your parent's "take the train to work in the city" but a more broader network of commuters that often go suburb-to-suburb or don't necessarily need to all head into downtown Chicago. Approximately 7 million suburban residents will live in the Chicago area that never need to enter Chicago, but our transit systems are still focused on Chicago as the spoke.

Even those that head into Chicago can't just go from a Metra train and switch into a CTA train thanks to the disconnect between anything controlled by the City of Chicago and everything else.

We say that any transit deal for the future must include the most critical step needed to fix transit for the future. Eliminate the CTA and let one agency integrate all transit together so the reality of the 21st century can be applied to connect the transit dots.

And, since we expect Mayor Daley to huff, puff and whine about why he should be able to maintain control of the CTA, we say go ahead and give him free rides now that he's old and his tantrums are getting more frequent. The City of Chicago is broke anyway thanks to him so they can dump his limo, driver and let him ride on the transit system he expects everyone else to like.


Anonymous said...

Aurora Country Club sues Alderman

October 29, 2009

AURORA -- The Aurora Country Club has sued Aurora Alderman Rick Lawrence, claiming $3,477 in unpaid dues and other expenses.

But Lawrence said these claims are "slanderous and absolutely untrue," and threatened to file a countersuit against the club for breach of contract and endangering the health and safety of its members.

Lawrence said the suit stems from a Jan. 31 incident at the club on Prairie Street. Lawrence and his family were there eating dinner, he said, when an inebriated club member accosted them.

"He literally screamed and shouted profanities at them in a manner that would fill any parent with disgust, horror and anger," Lawrence said. After asking country club officials to step in and getting no response, Lawrence said he withdrew his membership in the club and left, never to return.

Lawrence said he paid what should have been his final bill from the club in February but continued to receive bills throughout the rest of the year. These, he said, are the basis of the country club's complaint, and he is confident he doesn't owe them a dime.

Club Manager Robert White would not discuss details of the case. He said the club has filed small claims suits against members who leave with balances due in the past, but it does not happen often.

The complaint, filed earlier this month in Kane County Circuit Court, alleges a balance due for "membership fees, food, merchandise, golf fees and miscellaneous charges incurred while a member of the Aurora Country Club."

Lawrence, however, says he has never been a golfing member and has never incurred golf fees.

His court date is Nov. 10.

"I take this matter very seriously and will be consulting with an attorney to prevent any further harm to my reputation," Lawrence said.

Anonymous said...

You dumb ass. What's this got to do with mass transit?

Anonymous said...

openline wont let the shameless/classless lawrence story get commented on, so here you go.

Anonymous said...

So I take it you do not believe the explanation given by Lawrence in the very article you posted?

Anonymous said...

Believing an explanation isn't the point. Openline will not post this story and not everyone reads the Beacon. A well read community is a more informed community.