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Comment on Recruitment begins for San Benito County Civil Grand Jury by Joseph P. Thompson


Staff member
Dec 13, 2023
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Dear Friends, Hats off for the brave citizens who volunteer to serve on the SBC Grand Jury.
These taxpayer watchdogs certainly deserve our thanks for injecting local government with a grain of integrity. If the suggestion box is open, I’d like to offer some recommendations like the ones that I’ve offered to past SBC Grand Juries. (1) Our law has since our Revolution stood for democratic, representative government: Governance without the consent of the governed is taboo. So, since COG governs SBC’s transport policy by five unelected “directors,” as other Counties do, why do local leaders tolerate this governance abuse? (2) COG’s “directors,” 3 from County Districts, 2 from Cities, lack jurisdiction over 2 Districts, which remain unrepresentated, thus depriving the citizens of those 2 unrepresented District a voice in COG’s transport decisions, and depriving them of their constitutional right to equal protect of the law, and due process to be given a voice on the appointed joint power authority COG. (3) Voters elect Supervisors, but not COG directors, who govern COG as a stand-alone government authority, as I was told by then County Counsel while standing at BOS’ podium. (4) To protect their turf, and the vested interests who feast off the taxpayers, COG refuses to consider private sector transport options, and we suffer the consequences, like other Counties do. Take a look at the five SCC Civil Grand Jury Indictments of VTA, indicting VTA of felony abuse of taxpayers. Otherwise we will continue to see gas taxes increased so that they can fund bankrupt boondoggles. Joe Thompson (408) 848-5506; E-Mail: [email protected]; Charter Member, SBCCOG Citizens Transit Task Force, and Citizens Rail Advisory Committee; Past-Chair, Legislation Committee, Transportation Lawyers Assn. (There’s more, but I’m out of space.)

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