Write a column, and people will let you know what they think. This week’s commentary on the mixed messages emanating from the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit board generated two kinds of responses:

First, people in Sonoma County who supported the 2008 SMART tax – and who have supported plans for a North Bay rail system for a long time – are unhappy about the news that the train may be delayed. And they worry what this means for the future.

Second, folks who opposed the tax in the first place are eager to declare that the events of recent days validate their claim that SMART won’t be able to deliver on its promise to operate a rail system that stretches all the way from Larkspur to Cloverdale.

As someone who has been writing editorials and columns in support of North Bay transportation improvements for a long time, I take no satisfaction from writing about this continuing controversy. But I also think it would be a mistake if the directors of SMART under-estimate the angst associated with it.

Most people want SMART to succeed. Most understand that the recession creates a revenue problem. But people have expectations, too.

BTW, if you missed the column, you can read it by clicking here.

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