At today’s PSTA board meeting, Oldsmar mayor and PSTA Board member Doug Bevis said that reallocating miles from some bus routes to other routes means “we are cutting”, even when the total number of miles remain the same. However, Bevis began his statement by acknowledging that he “gets kind of confused sometimes.”
In this one minute of video, Bevis made statements that evoke the “jabberwocky” poetry of Lewis Carroll’s famous book “Through the Looking Glass”. It’s one minute of video well worth watching for those who appreciate clear thinking, or the lack thereof.
Bevis (pictured right) ended his one-minute statement by saying that the purpose of PSTA’s current service changes is “to be a little more efficient, and like she [a PSTA staffer] said today “revenue neutral”, so I get confused when I hear that we are not cutting.”
Bevis may be the first elected area official ever to think that “revenue neutral” is synonymous with “cutting.” However, he may have confused “revenue neutral” with “revenue miles neutral”, and thought that the latter was the goal.
A search of Google found zero results for the term “revenue miles neutral”. However, the Guardian would not be surprised if tax and spend transit ideologues adopted this term as a way to confuse the public policy debate.
Multiple citizens have demanded bus service cuts in light of PSTA’s sharply declining ridership, which is down 9.4% halfway through its fiscal year compared to last year.
Bevis was not on the PSTA board in 2014 when PSTA handed out brochures by the tens of thousands telling voters that “if the [Greenlight] referendum does not pass, PSTA will default to a depleted network of basic routes.” That sentence was bold-faced by PSTA, not by the Guardian.
PSTA has not cut its revenue miles at all since the defeat of Greenlight Pinellas in November, 2014 (62% voted “NO”).
PSTA has never argued that the words “will” or “depleted” means anything other than the dictionary definitions or meanings of the words.
It was also Bevis who last month suggested it may be a viable option for the Rays baseball team to move to his city of 14,000 residents. Kevin King, Chief of Staff for St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman, responded with “to me, Oldsmar’s like Georgia”.
A predictable and amusing war of words followed, ending with Oldsmar City Council Member Jerry Beverland saying that St. Petersburg “is like a rat’s rear end.”
Just last week, Bevis and other officials were accused in a public meeting by a citizen of taking bribes. Oldsmar resident Wendy Maltinos came to a city council meeting and asked how much the council was “paid off to put this through.” The issue involved a zip-line. Beverland, who has served on the Oldsmar city council off and on since 1970, said “I have never seen any council that could be bought off.”
It’s been a rough calendar quarter for Bevis so far, and we’re only halfway through it.
Towards the end of that same PSTA board meeting, Pinellas County Commissioner Janet Long told fellow board member “surely you are aware” of the resignation of St. Pete Beach Mayor Maria Lowe. However, none of them had heard the news, highlighting once again the dangers of making assumptions.
Long’s statement and what followed is another minute of government in action worth watching (below).
As always, the Guardian reports and the readers decide.