Since taking office on December 1, 2018, Mayor Tim Keller has been trying to clean up the $135 million-dollar disaster known as the ART Bus Project.
Keller even journeyed to Washington back in January, hat in hand, to lobby the Federal Transpiration Administration for the $75 million dollar grant and he came back empty handed.
After a full 6 months in office, Keller continues to be made miserable with the project and still clings to the hope the $75 million federal grant will be forthcoming.
During a press conference, Mayor Tim Keller explained the city designed the ART bus routes and charging stations based on the fully-electric buses being able to run 275 miles without recharging.
After a full 7 months since the previous Mayor dedicated the project as “up and running” Keller reported the electric busses still do not hold a charge and the city is in contract negotiations with the manufacturer.
The electric buses delivered are supposed to operate for 275 miles but they cannot go more than 180 miles before they need charging, which means more buses or more bus stations are needed.
In the press conference update of the ART project, Keller said the city is looking to “divorce” itself from the manufacturer and in the process of renegotiating its contract with the firm.
Renegotiating the contract would mean in part that the city keeps only some of the 15 buses delivered to the city.
The Keller Administration itself created a problem with the ART buses when it took delivery of at least 10 of the buses in California where the buses were assembled.
Instead of being shipped by rail, the buses were driven across country and sustained damages which may not be covered by the warranty or have voided the warranty.
A bus manufacturer spokesman stated the busses were not designed for cross country driving and damages caused by the delivery may not be covered by the warranty.
Keller went on to say the buses were like kids in a divorce where parents are fighting for who gets custody.
Never heard before new vehicles subject to manufacture warranties being compared to children in a custody case.
If a “divorce” is what Keller really wants, he needs to hire a good lawyer, file suit and seek damages for breach of contract for all the delays and breach of warranties relating to the buses.
Litigation is why we have a city attorney’s office as well a risk management department.
Both the City Attorney’s Office have had no problem settling cases and dishing out $62 million dollars in police misconduct and deadly use of force cases.
Instead of being miserable for another year in a marriage trying to correct all the mistakes with ART, Keller needs to cut our losses and move on with termination of the marriage and give up custody the kids.