[Supervisor Antonovich] – In a punitive action, the majority of the MTA Board undermined a motion to complete the Gold Line to Claremont – thumbing their nose at the San Gabriel Valley Council of Governments as well as state, federal and local lawmakers who strongly supported it. The motion failed 4-8 with Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich, Chairman of the MTA Board, Duarte City Councilman John Fasana, Supervisors Mark Ridley-Thomas and Don Knabe voting yes. Los Angeles City Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and his MTA appointees continued their opposition to the regional Gold Line to Claremont. Molina was absent.
“It is hypocritical for MTA directors, at the same meeting, to attack the Gold Line, which has come in under budget and on time, while rewarding L.A. City’s Westside by funding $75 million in overruns on the 405 freeway,” Antonovich said.
The motion was supported by the San Gabriel Valley congressional delegation members, the entire San Gabriel Valley State Delegation and the San Gabriel Valley Council of Governments.
Expressing strong support, Congressional representatives Adam Schiff, Judy Chu, Gloria Negrete-McLeod and Grace Napolitano wrote, “It is necessary that this information be updated to be consistent with Measure R’s enacting legislation and the will of L.A. County voters. If this motion is approved by the Metro Board on Thursday, and such technical changes are implemented by staff immediately while Metro awaits a final response regarding the TIFIA applications, we would proudly support he acceleration and amendments to the Measure R Expenditure Plan.”
Assembly members Norma Torres, Ed Chau, Curt Hagman, Roger Hernandez, Cristina Garcia, Chris Holden, and Ron Calderon along with Senators Ed Hernandez, Bob Huff and Carol Liu supported the motion saying, “The early five-year-old expenditure plan contains information that is outdated and inaccurate for a number of the Measure R projects. We respectfully request that Metro staff update the expenditure plan to reflect the most current information available for all Measure R transit projects.”
Assemblyman Chris Holden, a former Pasadena Councilman said, “I would like to commend Chairman Antonovich’s proposal to update the cost estimates of projects funded with Measure R funds and I encourage the board to adopt this amendment before approving the accelerated Measure R projects.”
San Gabriel Valley COG President, Alhambra City Councilwoman Barbara Messina also voiced support, asking on behalf of the 31 cities of the San Gabriel Valley that MTA correct “inaccuracies” and “errors related to the Gold Line Foothill Extension costs and completion dates.”