Salt Lake Transit Authority Accused of Misusing Funds

<p>In Salt Lake City, advocates for bus riders have asked the state attorney general to investigate whether the Utah Transit Authority has skewed its ridership figures to gain public support for major investments, which they say is a misuse of funding.</p>
March 26, 2008, 10am PDT | Nate Berg
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"Advocates for low-income bus riders, angry over perceived favoritism for rail projects, are asking Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff to investigate the Utah Transit Authority for misuse of public funds."

"The complaint stems from a legislative audit released in January that questioned the level of executive bonuses and the honesty of the agency's public statements, among other things."

"The audit alleges that UTA continually used inaccurate data for more than a decade and also states, 'We remain concerned that the faulty data is still being used to justify major investments in the transit system,' Linda Parsons of Utah Jobs with Justice wrote in her request to Shurtleff, dated Thursday. 'Over four years UTA massively overstated TRAX ridership to deceptively gain public support and to qualify their executives for lucrative job performance bonuses.'"

"The request for investigation was backed by Jobs with Justice, its Transit Riders Union and several community groups who also wrote letters, Parsons said."

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Published on Saturday, March 22, 2008 in The Salt Lake Tribune
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