Forget Waldo — where’s Chuck Kuntz of LRT Opposition?
Chuck Kuntz came to the attention of those opposing Waterloo Region’s $818-million Light Rail Transit plan with this February 1 article announcing his intended petition calling for cancelling it.
““This train has left the station,” Wideman said. “The region has expended a lot of money at this point.”
But Waterloo resident Chuck Kuntz is going to give it a try anyway.
He’s started an online petition which he plans to present to regional councillors in the spring and hopes to get 200,000 signatures.
Kuntz said he’s seen a lot of comments in the media from people who aren’t happy with the region’s plans for light rail trains that will run from Conestoga Mall in Waterloo to Fairview Park mall in Kitchener.
He’s acting now — nearly two years after rapid transit was approved in June 2011 — because he didn’t think politicians would approve the plan.
“When they started talking about the light rail transit, I thought it was a joke that would never go through,” he said.
He has concerns about the cost and whether anyone will actually ride the trains. The provincial and federal governments are chipping in a combined $565 million to the region’s $253 million for the $818-million project.
“My tax dollars are going to pay for all of it,” he said.“
In his local February 7 570 News interview, he made a lot of sense — that is, until he called for 200,000 signatures on his petition — more than the number of voters who turned out in the 2010 regional election.
Regardless of his intent, the consequence is that anything less than the target would be perceived as a failure, and anything far less than the target would be perceived as an embarrassment, and it created the false impression that such opposition would be required in order to kill or amend the plan.
On January 23, the first post had been made to the Facebook group, LRT Opposition.
Then, just one day later, this was the public face put on the leadership of the opposition to LRT:
Is this the face of serious opposition?
In this message, five days after the article, he says he has 300 emails to review, and is heartened by positive comments.
Here is my invitation to Chuck Kuntz, two weeks after the article about his petition, to appear on my Sunday radio show, Exposing Faux Capitalism. By this point, I had already interviewed 19 others, including three of the alternative candidates in the preceding local byelection in the Kitchener-Waterloo riding, which demonstrated the local listenership of my show.
Then, on April 16, when he should no longer be receiving 300 emails, especially since his last page update was made on February 7, I sent this message:
And, finally, on May 16, I sent this email:
All two messages and one email went unresponded to, and there’s no mention about the petition he intended to present to regional councillors in the spring, which leaves me with the question: Where’s Chuck Kuntz of LRT Opposition? Was this intended to be a serious petition, and serious LRT Opposition?
For more on the $818-million LRT boondoggle, listen to my interview with local activist, Julian Ichim, on June 23.