Letter to the editor, Daily News, November 8, 1997

As the rhetoric flies fast and furious, I can think of a number of facts that stand in the way of a San Fernando Valley transit zone. First, the inevitable comparisons with Foothill Transit fail to take into account that Foothill's zone consists of a region where there are numerous small municipalities, tied together by unincorporated parts of Los Angeles County, and its governing board reflects its many "owners.'' The San Fernando Valley falls almost wholly within the city limits of Los Angeles.

A Valley transit zone would be thus dominated by the city of Los Angeles. If Los Angeles would be the dominant governing municipality of a Valley transit zone, it would in effect be a city Department of Transportation-operated zone.

The Department of Transportation is very efficient in its operation of peak-hour commuter express bus lines and DASH minibus loops, but it has very little experience in operating all-day, seven-day-a-week service, and I am not convinced that it can efficiently operate the approximately 30 Metropolitan Transportation Authority lines that operate within the proposed zone.

Comparing a Valley transit zone with municipal operators does not take into account the service area of, for example, Santa Monica Municipal Bus Lines, which is much more compact than the San Fernando Valley and thus can be operated far more efficiently.

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