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LA Metro Purple Line Train (wikipedia)

Citizens Demand Action on L.A.’s Purple Line Train Cost Overruns and Mismanagement

Homeless epidemic spending mirrors wasteful train spending – deceitful and expensive

By Katy Grimes, September 30, 2019 12:08 pm

Many cities in the United States are experiencing an overwhelming increase in the number of homeless people occupying the streets, leading many citizens to take action. 

Recently, in lower Manhattan, residents were so fed up with city officials ignoring the homeless crisis, they started a petition to remedy the epidemic. Sacramento has a citizens group documenting the volume of homeless crimes, abuses, exposures, sex crimes, and the like, much to Mayor Steinberg’s chagrin.

In spite of Los Angeles city officials paying $619 million last year to address the homeless crisis, this issue is only getting worse in L.A. and provides an explanation as to why private citizens feel the need to take matters into their own hands. Gov. Gavin Newsom announced in July regional leaders and “statewide experts” who will advise his administration on “solutions to address the state’s homelessness epidemic,” except these “statewide experts” are mayors and officials of the state’s most overrun cities, and long-time bureaucrats of the welfare system.

California’s homeless epidemic is not the only example of citizens in our state having to lead because Los Angeles government officials fail to do so. 

“Stop The Purple Threat”

Lisa Korbatov has been leading the fight against Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s Purple Line, an issue the Globe has written about before, which serves as another example of wasteful government spending and mismanagement. Korbatov, well-known in Republican politics, and a former Beverly Hills School Board president, has led the effort to stop the Purple Line because of the unnecessary but significant health risks to students.

Korbatov is leading the campaign called “Stop The Purple Threat.”

The Purple Line, which was originally going to be built under a public right-of-way, moved 800 feet away from its original planned destination and is now being constructed on the fence line of the Beverly Hills High School. The project has continually gone over budget Korbatov says, and recently added $400 million to an already exorbitant budget.

Even worse, according to Korbatov, they have created the more dangerous route under residential property and under Beverly Hills High School. Korbatov points out that no subway has ever gone under instructional buildings of a public school. This will be a first in the nation, if not the world.

The project is expected to waste a minimum of $400 million in taxpayer dollars and that price tag will undoubtedly continue to increase if construction is not halted, “Stop the Purple Threat” says. The group wants President Trump and Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao to withhold federal funding to force the LA Metro Authority to re-route the Purple Line Extension away from Beverly Hills High School.

Aside from putting an unnecessary dent in taxpayers’ wallets, the expansion of the Purple Line poses critical health risks to the faculty and students attending Beverly Hills High School, while also threatening the school’s future plans for modernization. The site change will cause tunneling of the line to occur through unmapped oil fields that contain deadly methane gas and hydrogen sulfide, below the school. 

The Purple Line has attracted national attention from lawmakers. While still in office, President Obama allocated billions of dollars towards funding the Purple Line, leading Congressional Republicans at the time to criticize him for green-lighting funding for this dubious expansion. 

While President Trump threatens to pull federal funds from California for highways and other transportation projects, many say the Purple Line should be added to this list.

According to Korbatov, Beverly Hills residents are asking President Trump to step in and save California one more time, and pull the federal funding from the LA Metro Purple Line subway expansion project.

Californians have grown weary of their taxpayer dollars being wasted on so many unnecessary projects, while necessary infrastructure upgrades are ignored. We are now seeing more private citizens than ever taking action and demanding accountability. Whether it’s the homeless crisis taking place in California or dubious projects like the Purple Line expansion, citizens and taxpayers are demanding proper action from elected officials. 

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