LOS ANGELES — The transit official who was fired last year as head of RTD's much-criticized bus operations has sued the agency, saying he was blamed for poor decisions by General Manager John Dyer and other top level managers.
Ed Nash, who was the RTD's transportation director, says in the suit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court that the timing of his abrupt dismissal, combined with favorable performance evaluations during his 3 1/2 years on the job, shows he was "a scapegoat for highly publicized problems relating to [the RTD's] operations."
A 62-year-old retired Air Force major general, Nash was fired by RTD Assistant General Manager Robert Korach in January, 1987. The dismissal came less than 48 hours before Dyer, under intense public criticism for problems in the bus system, announced that there would be major reforms within the agency. (Under continuing pressure, Dyer himself will resign at the end of this month.)
Nash, who previously made only limited and reserved comments about his firing, told The Times on Monday that a series of "ridiculous" decisions by top management--including cutting back on the number of bus drivers in 1986 and shutting down a needed operating division near downtown--overtaxed the bus system that carries more than 1 million riders a day. Those and other decisions, which Nash said he strongly opposed, contributed to a number of problems that surfaced in 1986 and 1987, including increased passenger complaints, driver shortages, allegedly higher accident rates and overcrowded and dirty buses.