Some lawmakers push for state audit of TriMet

Some lawmakers push for state audit of TriMet

PORTLAND, Ore. – Several Oregon lawmakers are pushing for the state to audit TriMet.

"There's never been any sort of overall control on how TriMet operates," said Rep. Chris Gorsek, D-Troutdale. "So they have a huge budget, and they impact lots of people. It's a very important agency, please don't get me wrong about that, but they don't have any sort of check on their decisions."

Chris Gorsek is leading a bipartisan group of lawmakers to fast-track House Bill 3316. If passed, it would empower the secretary of state to conduct a top to bottom review of the transit agency's operations and finances.

Such an independent examination would be unprecedented in TriMet's history

TriMet is under this extra scrutiny after coming under fire for giving top management raises in secret, even as it cut service and raised fares on riders.

For its part, TriMet says it will co-operate fully with the state audit if the bill passes.

"It's another opportunity to have a third party provide an unbiased assessment of TriMet's finances and operations. My staff and I will assist in any way possible. We believe this will be constructive for TriMet and the community we serve," said General Manager Neil McFarlane.