Highly paid consultants and aspiring politicians facilitate transportation funding meetings that have predetermined outcomes. The people drawn from the community to attend these meetings are “just for show.”
Santa Cruz, CA
The ethics behind the Santa Cruz county transportation process has hit a new low. Santa Cruz Regional Transportation Commission (SCCRTC) is the organization implementing policies for the transportation system. It’s not difficult to look past the rhetoric about road improvements and highway widening to see that the real objectives of the SCCRTC  are to force public transportation projects and to restrict private auto use.
All five Santa Cruz County Supervisors sit on the Transportation Commission. As reported in the Santa Cruz Sentinel , Fred Keeley , the County Tax-Collector , convened an 80-member  task force charged with finding “consensus”  on transportation funding projects. The task force  however is part of the SCCRTC that, for over 30 years, has failed miserably  in providing adequate road infrastructure and freedom of automobility  for the taxpayer. They have made both public and private transportation difficult to maneuver thorugh for many years.
Transportation Researcher Michael Park explained how we are being socially engineered out of freedom of mobility in his article entitled, A Generation of Manipulation and Behavior Modification :
“…Henry Baker, Deputy Director of the Planning Department, told the Board of Supervisors that in order to gain that share of transit patronage (an astounding 30%), they would have to bait people with a carrot and discipline them with a stick. Make it easy to use, he said, with reliable service and improved scheduling, and it will be attractive. But if that doesn’t work, make auto usage difficult, costly, and inconvenient. “Permit road congestion to increase,” he said. “Do not build in anticipation of demand.” The Regional Transportation Commission knew in 1975 that roadway expansion was needed in order to alleviate rising congestion — and the need would only become more urgent as the years passed — but it hoped to preclude roadway expansion by pursuing alternate forms of transportation…”
Fred Keeley convenes public meetings with Eileen Goodwin , a professional facilitator whose company Apex Strategies, has been under contract with the SCCRTC . Goodwin gets paid $175.00/hour (plus expenses)  to literally wave a magic wand while treating the meeting participants like young children (see video) . Goodwin does this while pretending to solve the problems that her cilent, the SCCRTC, creates and maintains.
Beginning in March 2006, Keeley and Goodwin held training sessions  in order to condition the voting task force members. This is so that they could later pack a series of three-hour public meetings ( in each supervisoral district) with task force trainees  and government officials, including Chair of the SCCRTC, County Supervisor Ellen Pirie . A task force member  who wishes to remain anonymous admitted that all of the three-hour public meetings had a predetermined outcome. The call for community input was ”just for show.”
This is classic Agenda 21/Sustainable Development/Smart Growth transportation planning . Michael Park explains in his article, “Smart Growth Rolls into Town in a Trolley”  that Santa Cruz is experiencing a manufactured crisis . “Traffic planners are content to watch congestion build up on the higways until residents are screaming for a solution. All the while the planning department is changing zoning regulations, working with private developers” …. to build high-density government housing along along rail and trail lines.
 objectives of the SCCRTC – The objectives of the SCCRTC are consistent with the original objectives as stated in the Santa Cruz Local Agenda 21 document concerning transportation. Agenda 21 documents contain junk science so read with caution
 Santa Cruz Sentinel – “Keeley to Head Transit Group” December 8, 2005 article by Genevieve Bookwalter. Keeley was tapped to find “consensus” on transportation funding projects.
 A Generation of Manipulation and Behavior Modification – Research and article by Michael Park on how the SCCRTC and the Board of Supervisors have engaged in manipulation and behavior modification since the 1970’s.
 Eileen Goodwin – Resume for Apex Strategies, Eileen Goodwin
 Apex Strategies, has been under contract with the SCCRTC – Agreement showing over $200,000.00 to Eileen Goodwin
 $175.00/hour (plus expenses) – contract w/ County of Santa Cruz for Eileen Goodwin’s consulting services
 (literally) – video-clip from May 20, 2006 Watsonville Transportation funding Task Force public meeting showing Eileen Goodwin and her wand.
 Keeley and Goodwin held training sessions – Orientation photos from the Transportation Funding Task Force website.
 Chair of the SCCRTC, County Supervisor Ellen Pirie – SCCRTC website showing the composition of the Regional Transportation Commission
“Santa Cruz County is experiencing a manufactured crisis. Planners are content to watch congestion build up on the highways until residents are screaming for a solution. All the while, the planning department is changing zoning regulations, working with private developers…” to build high-dnesity government housing along rail and trail lines (aka sustainable communities).
Listen to related radio interview with Researcher, Jeannie Soderman and Host, Roy Avila: Local Transportation Plans, the Trans-Texas Corridor and International Road Systems.