To consolidate, disseminate, and gather information concerning the 710 expansion into our San Rafael neighborhood and into our surrounding neighborhoods. If you have an item that you would like posted on this blog, please e-mail the item to Peggy Drouet at pdrouet@earthlink.net

Friday, June 3, 2016

Metro Report Shows How Measure R Has Changed LA

Has that voter-approved sales tax hike paid off?


By Elijah Chiland, June 2, 2016

In 2008, Metro's Measure R ballot initiative got just above the two-thirds support it needed from voters to institute a half-cent sales tax increase that would pay for future projects. Many of those projects have now been completed, and, fresh off the unveiling of its new Expo Line Extension to Santa Monica, Metro will be asking voters for another sales tax bump this November.f. In advance of the election, Metro released a "quality of life" report Tuesday (via the Source) that shows how Measure R has affected the lives of Angelenos—with the help of pretty charts and data tables, of course.

Not surprisingly, the report is filled with some pretty flattering statistics (rider satisfaction is up five percent!), along with a few data points that seem hard to link solely to Metro (clean buses alone probably don't account for an 8 percent drop in LA County CO2 emissions). There's also a somewhat silly section that argues "riding Metro is quicker than driving during worst case peak period conditions." Of course, the time estimates only include the duration of the ride plus a few minutes of wait time, so that's probably only true if you live at a train station.
Metro Quality of Life graphic Graphics via The Source

Fortunately, one very significant result of Measure R is that nearly a quarter of LA County residents now live close to a rail, express bus, or Metrolink stop. The 31 new stations added since 2008 have the potential to serve just under a half million customers. The transit agency is offering new options to plenty of commuters in these areas, with 40 percent of LA jobs now accessible to Metro stations.
Metro Quality of Life graphic

Metro also acknowledges that ridership has dipped on both trains and buses over the past few years, though the agency is quick to point out that this seems to be part of a national trend. Another intriguing statistic: since 2008, riders report feeling more safe on buses and at bus stops, but less safe on trains and at train stations. It's not clear what's driving this disparity, but it's certainly something Metro will want to address as rail ridership increases and bus ridership goes down.
Metro ridership data

Metro ride time data

Metro Tap card graphic

 Metro environmental data

LA County transit plan must head off bait-and-switch


By The Editorial Board, The Daily Breeze, June 2, 2016

 A file photo shows the opening of of the Expo Line rail extension to Santa Monica last month. The Metro board is considering a proposal similar to Measure R, which helped fund the rail line.

A file photo shows the opening of of the Expo Line rail extension to Santa Monica last month. The Metro board is considering a proposal similar to Measure R, which helped fund the rail line.

In the next few weeks, the board that runs mass transportation in Los Angeles County is expected to give voters the list of proposed new transit projects to approve or reject in a November ballot measure.

If it’s not careful, the board will also give voters something else — a good reason to distrust the whole, $120 billion plan.

Persuading Southern Californians to raise sales taxes to pay for infrastructure improvements is no sure thing under any circumstances. It’s especially hard when a measure needs two-thirds approval to pass, as this initiative to extend the Measure R tax hikes would. Measure R barely cleared the 66.7 percent threshold in 2008, and the followup Measure J fell short in 2012.

Selling taxpayers would be even harder if they couldn’t be sure exactly what they’d be getting for their money.

The original Measure R included guarantees that the listed transportation projects wouldn’t be whimsically changed by the board after the initiative was approved. No money would be siphoned off by the federal or state government or for non-transit spending.

But as the L.A. County Metropolitan Transportation Authority prepares to unveil the new initiative colloquially called Measure R2, the Metro board hasn’t indicated it will include such lock-in language.

This alone raises fear of a bait-and-switch, fear that voters could OK an official list of projects in November and then see Metro make changes.

The fear is heightened by something that’s happening separately in Sacramento. Sen. Tony Mendoza, D-Cerritos, unhappy that a first draft of R2 didn’t give his district a major transit project for at least another two decades, wants to overhaul the Los Angeles-centric Metro board by increasing representation for other cities.

The possibility of a measure without guarantees combined with a Metro board with shifting priorities is worrisome.

The editorial board spoke with state Sen. Bob Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, and Richard Katz, the former assemblyman and Metro board member, who are among the politicians fighting for the San Fernando Valley to get its fair share of new transit projects. They said that even if the project list does right by their part of the county, a lack of guarantees would make them hesitant to support R2.

“I think it makes it hard to campaign for the measure if you can’t look a voter in the eye and say, ‘The list is the list,’” Katz said.

If Metro wants voters’ support, it needs to ensure they know what they’d get for their money.

Candidates Positions on the SR-710 Extension


Candidates, Elected Officials and
Community Leaders
Who Oppose
the SR-710 Extension

Eric Garcetti
Stephen Del Guercio
Mike Gatto
Jimmy Gomez
Gil Gonzalez
Bob Joe
Marina Khubesrian
Carol Liu
Steve Madison
Diana Mahmud
Ara Najarian
Laura Olhasso
Anthony Portantino
Adam Schiff
Richard Schneider
Dave Spence
Don Voss

Candidates, Elected Officials and
Community Leaders
Who Support
the SR-710 Extension

Mike Antonovich
Luis Ayala
Gil Cedillo
Edwin Chau
Judy Chu
John Fasana
Chris Holden
Barbara Messina
Gloria Molina
Stephen Sham
updated on 2/18/2015

Voting Info
for Upcoming Primary Election
June 7th, 2016

Candidates Positions on the SR-710 Extension

Candidates Who are Against
the 710 Extension/Tunnel

United States Representative

Jack Orswell - Candidate 27th Congressional District
Adam B. Schiff - Congressman Incumbent and Candidate 28th Congressional District

State Senator

Anthony J Portantino - Candidate State Senate District 25

Member of the State Assembly

Alan S Reynolds - City Commissioner, Candidate Assemblymember 41st District
Laura Friedman - Glendale City Councilmember, Candidate Assemblymember 43Rd District
Jimmy Gomez - Candidate Assemblymember 51st District

County Supervisor

Ara J Najarian - Glendale City Councilmember, Candidate Los Angeles County Supervisor 5th District

Candidates Who WANT
the SR-710 Extension/Tunnel

United States Representative

Judy Chu - Congresswoman Incumbent and Candidate 27th Congressional District
Xavier Becerra - Candidate U.S. Representative 34th District

State Senator

Michael D. Antonovich - Candidate for State Senate District 25

Member of the State Assembly

Chris Holden - Incumbent, Candidate for Assemblymember 41st District
Ed Chau - Candidate for Assemblymember 49Th District

County Supervisor

Bob Huff - Candidate Los Angeles County Supervisor 5th District


This website is designed to provide information
and documentation regarding the 710 tunnel project.
updated 5/28/2016

Pasadena Weekly Election Endorsements: Why Are They All 710 Tunnel Supporters?

June 3, 2016

Mod: I have often believed that the Pasadena Weekly can be bought. Out of all our fine local publications (a few of whom often claim to have more influence than they actually do), the PW is on the top of my list to potential pay-to-play papers. If you have any doubts about this, click here for a quick refresher on last year's Tyron Hampton/Andre' Coleman controversies. And I have to tell you, their election endorsements this week smell awfully fishy to me. I mean, how can you endorse both Bernie Sanders and Michael Antonovich in the same breath?

Not that the Sage of Burlington is a known 710 Tunnel supporter mind you (at least not to me), but everybody local they endorsed for next Tuesday's California primary just happens to be. Check out this noisome bunch (link):

It just seems like too much of a coincidence. Support for the hole from hell is the only thing all four of these shopworn political perennials have in common. So what gives?

Speaking of the 710 Tunnel ...

The real City of Pasadena is taking its opposition to the Alhambra Abattoir to next fall's ballot, and that really is a marvelous thing to see. Check out this Pasadena Star News editorial.

For the rest of this important editorial click here.