The Baton Rouge councilman pushing for the state Legislature to dissolve the parish bus system and repeal the CATS tax withdrew the resolution on Friday that asked the Metro Council to support the legislative action.
Metro Councilman John Delgado proposed a council resolution asking the council to urge the legislature to repeal the state law creating the Capital Area Transit System, which would effectively end the 10.6-mill property tax and pave the way for the city-parish to take control of the bus system.
He has said that he wants the Metro Council to have increased authority over the bus agency and would like to see operations contracted to a private firm.
Delgado said he pulled the resolution because he wants to hear feedback from more state lawmakers.
Delgado has met with five state representatives and one state senator so far, and has more meetings scheduled with members of the Capital Region Legislative Delegation.
“I have very strong support from the ones I’ve met with so far,” Delgado said. “Everyone I met with recognized serious problems with CATS and its governance.”
Delgado’s council resolution was expected to be voted on at the Sept. 11 meeting.
Delgado said he’s not changed his mind about CATS.
“I guarantee you that I’ll put a proposal back on the agenda, probably in about four weeks,” he said. “It may be modified from a full dissolution of CATS as an entity to more of a redefining of the CATS governing structure.”
Delgado wants to restructure the bus system because he said he’s disappointed by recent controversies involving the board and management involving alleged theft of public funds, missing fare box money and subverting standard protocols to award public contracts.