by Sam Hieb
Anyone else find it interesting that days before a key vote on the proposed Durham-Orange light line, the Orange County Board of Commissioners –as well as residents attending the public hearing—are told that their share of the cost will be reduced?
Orange commissioners’ vote –as well as the vote by Durham County commissioners— will decide whether or not to seek Federal Transit Administration funding for 50 percent of the project’s cost. Should the FTA sign off on the funding, a massive private fundraising effort would ensue, according to former GoTriangle General Manager David King:
King said FTA approval would trigger a private, $100 million fund-raising effort. The 21-member collaborative includes private citizens and leaders from universities, health care institutions and governments.
“That is a large number. It’s not automatic that it’s going to happen, but as you look at the names on this list … you’ll see it involves people who have a track record of being able do things at this scale,” King said.
The commissioners also heard Tuesday from 70 people, all of whom said they support transit, but only half of which supported advancing the light rail project.
Notice that “leaders from government and universities” is making up the so-called “21-member collaborative” that would trigger the private fundraising effort. That is not very reassuring.