How Not To Rebuild California's Infrastructure

Three months ago Gov. Schwarzenegger announced a landmark $222 billion plan to invest in California's infrastructure. Yet the state legislature has dealt a blow to crumbling bridges and congested freeways by failing to agree on a bond measure to fund it.
March 22, 2006, 5am PST | Josh Stephens
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"A significant amount of money included in the proposed bond just hours before legislative adjournment would have gone to the maintenance of the state transportation system. We have a $300 billion asset in our transportation system -- it makes good sense to try to maintain what we have as well as provide for mobility and congestion relief today and in the future -- and we lost money that would have gone to pay for the maintenance, safety, and upkeep of our existing system."

"To be blunt, we’re all just in shock that an issue of such critical importance to people throughout the state is dead in the water. Based on what other states, and even nations, have done to provide for their citizen’s environment and economy, what is unacceptable is what didn’t happen on March 15th."

"The coverage here in Southern California never really focused on what was at stake. It focused on 'who is this important to?' and why it was important to them from a political standpoint, but it really never talked about what the opportunity was and how depleted the transportation coffers have been over the last four or five years. Here we rank in the top five or six in the world economy, but we rank 49th among the 50 states in transportation spending and delivery. Come on! -- this was a story about you and me and every other Californian. Not just our commute, our congestion, our air quality and environment, but our children's."

"Today, the LAEDC Transportation Committee voted unanimously to recommend forming a '3-15 Commission' to both diagnose the system failure and prescribe a realistic plan for placing a comprehensive bond package on the November ballot. A 3-15 Commission must be positive, and prescriptive on substance. It also must demystify the legislative process and press for reform of state governance to encourage consensus."

Thanks to Josh Stephens

Full Story:
Published on Tuesday, March 21, 2006 in The Metro Investment Report
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