Wednesday, April 1, 2009 | 2:05 p.m.
Boulder City Council candidate Cam Walker says he's proud of his part in helping develop the Las Vegas Monorail, despite a recent newspaper ad that takes aim at him for his involvement in the project that was plagued after it opened by mechanical problems and lackluster ridership and revenue numbers.
Walker was chief operating officer of Transit Systems Management, which managed the monorail from 2000 until 2005. The monorail opened in 2004.
The ad, which ran in the March 24 issue of the Boulder City View, asserts that the monorail is "now predicted to go belly-up in less than six years of operation" and suggests Walker's experience with the project should count against him in the upcoming election.
For his part, Walker said his "opponents are confused, and I want to set the record straight."
Walker said when he left the company, it had a $126 million cash balance to pay for bonds and operation, and he suggested any problems with the management of the project were those of his successors. "I can't answer for how they managed it after I left," he said.
He also said it's not true that he has avoided talking about the monorail, as the ad suggests, and pointed out that he mentioned it in a Boulder City News candidate survey that was published March 19.
The ad also said the monorail was financed by "$653 million in state-guaranteed tax-exempt revenue bonds." But Bruce Woodbury, a member of the monorail's board of directors, said the bonds are not guaranteed by the state and are paid for solely by revenue from the monorail.
On another issue, the ad also stated that Walker supported a failed ballot question on last year's November municipal ballot which would have created a special tax district for the Boulder City Hospital.
To the contrary, Walker said, he did not support the ballot question.
Boulder City resident Sarah Weber of the political action committee Citizens for Governmental Accountability, which paid for the ad, said she had presumed that Walker, a member of the hospital's foundation board, supported the tax.
Weber said she did not apologize for the advertisement.
Cassie Tomlin can be reached at 948-2073 or firstname.lastname@example.org.