Assembly Committee Won’t Stop High Speed Rail from Going to Ballot

 

While I was sitting at the LA County Board of Supervisor’s hearing yesterday, another legislative body voted on another measure that would have robbed voters of the right to decide our transportation future.  LAist reports, via Politicker,  that a Senate bill that would remove Proposition 1, the High Speed Rail Bond Measure, from the ballot was voted down by an Assembly Committee.  The measure was doomed to failure anyway, Governor Schwarzenegger is a convert to the benefits of High Speed Rail, but it did allow the bill’s sponsor, State Senator Roy Ashburn, another turn in the spotlight.  And isn’t that what our tax dollars are for…to allow grandstanding politicians as many chances to promote themselves as possible?

The California High Speed Rail Blog believes that Asburn has deeper motives than just grandstanding:

Ashburn’s 11th hour objections are irresponsible. As a public servant
he ought to have raised these concerns earlier in the year, instead of
holding up the very bill that would address his concerns.

But
more significantly, Ashburn is using this fear, uncertainty, and doubt
strategy to try and kill the project outright. If he merely wanted an
improved bond measure, he would have spoken up sooner. Instead he’s
using these last-minute objections to block AB 3034 – he already
delayed past the deadline to alter Prop 1 – in hopes that either the
bond will be pulled or the public will turn against a plan he’s labeled
as inadequate.

Much like Metro’s sales tax proposal, High Speed Rail hasn’t cleared all of the steps it needs to appear in the proper form on the ballot.  As mentioned above, AB3034 that provides stronger language and a business plan for the project, needs to be approved by…actually, the stated deadline has already passed.  Let’s just say it needs to be approved soon.

Image: California High Speed Rail Authority

4 thoughts on Assembly Committee Won’t Stop High Speed Rail from Going to Ballot

  1. If passed this bond includes $995 million for rail connecting services, which just might provide some of the funds for the regional connector in downtown L.A. since the sales taxes has had to shift its emphasis to win over critics (who BTW, still whine even when they win–S*I*G*H).

  2. Booyeah! I’ve been waiting for this to come up for a vote since Arnie’s recall election of Gov. Davis canceled the effort to put it on the ballot.

    This is such a good idea, at least from what I’ve seen.

    I’m still not clear on how they get the train downtown in Los Angeles, but I don’t really care. I think they should take out the 5 Freeway and let the HSR cars move in that space.

    Just kidding. Sort of.

  3. They’re still studying the exact routing for the line between Palmdale and LA in the “Los Angeles to Palmdale Project EIR/EIS.” From the Statewide Program EIR/EIS, we already know that the line will utilize the Metrolink line along San Fernando Valley Rd. in a trench through the Valley and that the alignment will follow Soldedad Canyon through the mountains and not CA-14. The DEIR/DEIS is due for release later this year.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

Battle Lines Drawn in High Speed Rail Vote

|
Later this week, the plan to build a High Speed Rail line connecting Los Angeles and San Francisco faces a crucial vote in the California legislature.  Governor Jerry Brown asked lawmakers to release $2.7 billion of the $6 billion in bonds passed by California voters in 2008 for High Speed Rail.  Combined with $3.3 billion […]

Dana Gabbard: Yes on High Speed Rail

|
(As we’ve already seen today with Measure R, the campaign for and against Proposition 1A, a bonding measure to pay for High Speed Rail, is also heating up as the weather cools down.  Today, the Times profiled the efforts to support and oppose the ballot prop.  Speaking for those in favor, Dana Gabbard writes below […]

Politicians Threaten High Speed Rail Ballot Proposal

|
High Speed Rail in Taiwan What is it with the State Senate and not wanting to let voters have their say on transportation infrastructure? The Sacramento Bee reports that Senators from both parties and Governor Schwarzenegger cannot reach accord on how best to conduct oversight of the  proposed project, and now the legislation needed to […]

Breaking News: Governor Agrees to Sign High-Speed Rail Bill

|
As we continue to await word on whether we’ll be able to vote on Metro’s sales tax proposal, alternative transportation advocates did get some good news out of Sacramento earlier today.  Governor Schwarzenegger, who famously declared he would veto all legislation that didn’t have to do with the state budget, reversed course and said he […]

CALPIRG Students Rally for High Speed Rail

|
It’s no surprise that CALPIRG is a strong supporter of High Speed Rail for California.  While the rest of L.A. County was holding their breath on the L.A. County transit tax ballot proposition known as Measure R in 2008, CALPIRG was more concerned with a state bonding proposition that would set aside billions for the […]