On November 5, 2007, at the CPUC Public Hearing at Dorsey High School, about 500 residents, students, parents, teachers, administrators and child advocates packed the auditorium to deliver a message to CPUC Commissioner Timothy Simon and CPUC Judge Kenneth Koss about the Expo Line's proposed primarily at-grade design through South LA.
The hearing was covered in the media in particular by Fox 11 News:
We recorded several more of the statements. In addition to the statements by LAUSD Board Member Marguerite LaMotte, former City Councilmember Nate Holden, and delivered on behalf of Congresswoman Diane Watson, comments from the public can be viewed on the Fix Expo YouTube page:
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What Would Jesus Do?
Breeves Brogan, an area resident, pleads with the CPUC Commissioner, "So please, in the name of Jesus don't kill any children today. Their blood will be on whoever's hands makes the decision."
Why Not In South LA?
Sharon Rogers of the New Frontier Democratic Club and Los Angeles County Democratic Party Central Committee states, "Culver City children won't have to walk across tracks with 225-ton trains traveling at 55 mph coming up to 30 times per hour, why should ours?"
Other Side of the Tracks
Michelle Colbert of Save Leimert and the Empowerment Congress West Area Neighborhood Council states, "If we accept the line at it's current design South Los Angeles will literally be the other side of the tracks. There is data that shows that black and brown communities are more likely to have hazardous conditions placed in their communities. This dilemma wreaks of environmental racism, and an inferior diminished quality of life. Everything about the current design of this train is egregious and terribly wrong."
Build Smart Transit
- Prof. Najmedin Meshkati, the creator of the USC Transportation system safety program, quotes Metrolink CEO David Solow, "Every grade crossing is an accident waiting to happen."
- Irwin Davidson, a local property owner reminds MTA that, "It's not acceptable. We're a rich country. We can afford better than the very minimum. What is cheap today will be expensive in the long run."
- A native New Yorker states, "It's incomprehensible that you would consider bringing something as important as mass transportation to Los Angeles in the 21st century and having it doing this up and down sort of thing."
- A local resident asks, "If the MTA Blue Line was kind of flawed why put another flawed system in?"
- Mark Jolles reads from an article that quotes former LACTC Commissioner regarding the Blue Line deaths, "It's not fair to blame motorists. It's a terrible cop-out to blame pedestrians or kids to say they are at fault." Mr. Jolles concludes his personal statement with, "It's not the citizens that are causing problems. It is a low standard of engineering of the crossings."
Dorsey HS Alumni Association
Steve Bagby, president of the Dorsey HS Alumni Association: "As former Deputy of Transportation for the late Congresswoman Juanita Millender-McDonald to have overseen the Alameda Corridor as I have, I've seen the cut-and-cover - I've seen it be below grade in the communities of Compton and Lynwood, and the city of Los Angeles deserves no less. You cannot put a price on a child's life."
Student Learning & We Wanna Pick Them Up in the Afternoon
- Andrea Canty the VP of the Dorsey HS Alumni Association: "The tracks will be so close to the bungalows that are here, which will impede student learning."
- Jackie Conkelton a Dorsey surrogate parent and foster parent: "I raise other people's children; I don't want anything to happen to them. And the people who have their own children, they don't want anything to happen to them. We take them to school in the morning and we want to pick them up in the afternoon."
- Tinisha Brooks, president of the Dorsey Senior Class '08, "If a train going 25 mph can turn a Ford F-150 into a tincan, your child has no hope."
- Shellea Daniel of Dorsey ASB, "What if a train derails into this queuing area?"
- Afolabi, Dorsey student, "Once the line is operating everyone is going to get distracted."
- Rev. Donald Wilson of Dorsey Motivated Men: "An Expo Light Rail Line is needed, I do agree with that...but I want this committee to strongly consider how you want to bring it through here through Farmdale...at ground level. This is a very dangerous situation."
- Harold Washington of the Sutro Block Club: "It's not safe. I'm a former alumni of Dorsey High, class of '61. I would [have been] the first one to jump that fence and end up being hit by the train."
- Thabiti Ambata: "There is no way you can build a gate high enough. Testosterone rules these children."
- Marta Zaragosa of the East Culver City Neighborhood Alliance begins with, "This is not about moving people out of their cars, [off] of the freeways. It's about developers who have been buying property along the line for the last 15 years. And these same developers have given money to our politicians who have run for office."
- Julia Ansley, "Our elected representatives in this community, laid down, took a walk, because they want money paid to their campaigns."
- Tut Hayes, "You got to recognize that MTA and Expo they don't build transit. This is million dollars worth of construction there's big money in this."
- Jackie Ryan of Save Leimert and Leimert Park Business Association states, "You - the community - you here tonight are going to determine how this railroad is going to come."