Learn the `truth’ about rail | AspenTimes.com

Learn the `truth’ about rail

Allyn Harvey

Jon Caldara and Wendell Cox, two of the nation’s busiest opponents of rail, will tell valley residents tonight why they think two proposed local rail projects are a waste of time and money.

They are the featured speakers at “The Truth About Rail,” a town meeting hosted by the anti-rail group Common Sense Alliance. The meeting will start at 7:30 p.m. at the Wheeler Opera House.

Caldara is the former chairman of the RTD in Denver and the current director of the conservative Independence Institute, based in Golden.

He led the fight against RTD’s “Guide the Ride” transportation proposal in 1997, convincing Denver voters that the organization he ran should not be trusted with the money needed to expand light rail and other transportation services.

The Independence Institute is currently fighting RTD’s latest proposal to extend light rail service along the I-25 corridor in south Denver.

Cox is former board member of the Los Angeles County Transportation Commission and currently working as a consultant from an office in Illinois. He says his clients include government, private business and think tanks like the one Caldara heads. His website features extensive anti-rail writings and statistics.

Common Sense Alliance spokesman Jeffrey Evans says they were invited to Aspen to put things into context. “We wanted people to get a fresh perspective, instead of just having a debate between locals – myself and someone on the other side,” he said.

The evening will begin with comments from the guest speakers and end with a question-and-answer session, Evans said.

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