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Posts from the Denny Zane Category


Measure R 2 (or 2.1) Season Is Underway

Yesterday, Governor Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 767 authorizing Metro to place a sales tax on a future ballot to fund transportation growth.The ballot measure would likely appear on the 2016 fall ballot, along with the presidential race, Congressional races and a variety of local races.

We’re back!

Within minutes of the signing, Move L.A. released a statement praising the signing and declaring that this time, they will get the a new transportation tax passed.

“It’s time to double down on Measure R!,” beamed Denny Zane, Move L.A.’s executive director.

“We’ll have the right measure, the right coalition and the right campaign — remember that in 2012 the bill authorizing Metro to put Measure J on the ballot wasn’t signed until 2 months before the election, making it difficult for supporters to put together a winning campaign,” he said in the statement.

Zane is referring to the 2012 campaign to pass Measure J, which extended a previous sales tax to accelerate the project list created by 2008’s Measure R. Measure J failed to pass, earning a mere 66.1% of the vote. Measure R earned 66.9% of the vote. With two-thirds of the vote needed to pass a new tax, that .8% is the difference between “just passing” and “just missing.”

Move L.A. has been advocating for a new sales tax pretty much since the moment Measure R passed seven years ago. After the near miss in 2012, Zane has stumped for the new tax, worked hard to build a diverse coalition, and floated a variety proposals: the so-called “strawman” lists. The Los Angeles Times has a list of projects for the most-recent strawman.

But ultimately, the decision on whether or not to move forward with a new sales tax measure now rides with the Metro Board of Directors. Current Metro Board Chair Mark Ridley-Thomas seems slightly less enthusiastic than Zane*, but still interested in exploring the opportunity.

“Angelenos have been tremendously supportive of measures that help build and expand our transportation system ‎and reduce congestion,” Ridley-Thomas wrote in a statement. “The signing of this bill will allow Metro to continue to work with local stakeholders to determine whether to proceed with a measure for the November 2016 ballot.” Read more…


The 710 and Measure R2: Can Los Angeles Build Transit and Beat Its Addiction to Asphalt?

Mayor Eric Garcetti addresses attendees at the MoveLA Conference at Union Station. Photo: Roger Rudick.

Mayor Eric Garcetti addresses attendees at the MoveLA Conference at Union Station. Photo: Roger Rudick.

“We have to build an army of people who are willing to say ‘enough is enough,’” said Mayor Eric Garcetti at Wednesday’s MoveLA conference at Union Station, speaking of the region’s traffic and pollution problems.

He was there, along with hundreds of other county and city leaders, drumming up support for Measure R2, a proposed sales tax measure to raise more money for transit.

A recurring theme at the conference was the need to reduce the number of cars.

“We must address CO2 emissions,” said Dr. Manuel Pastor, a director at USC’s Center for Sustainable Cities. “One way to do that is to reduce vehicle miles driven.”

Which made me wonder how R2’s successful predecessor, Measure R, ended up funding projects that will do exactly the opposite, such as double-decking the 710.

In 2008, voters approved R’s half-cent Los Angeles County sales tax for a slew of transportation projects. It raises about $40 billion over 30 years. Denny Zane, former mayor of Santa Monica, founded MoveLA to push for this initiative. It grew out of a need to fund the Wilshire subway extension; Downtown Los Angeles, Koreatown, Century City, Beverly Hills, Westwood, Santa Monica — the “core” of Los Angeles stretches down the length of Wilshire Boulevard. Without a heavy rail “spine” connecting the region’s densest area, the entire transit network is handicapped.

Denny Zane speaks at the Move L.A. Conference. Photo: Roger Rudick

Denny Zane speaks at the Move L.A. Conference. Photo: Roger Rudick

But how do you convince someone in Encino or Alhambra to vote for a subway under Wilshire? Read more…

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Advocates, TransForm, Move L.A. Demand that Cap and Trade Funds Go For Cleaner Transportation

California Air Resources Board meets in Downtown Los Angeles. Photo: Ryan Wiggins

When California created a “cap and trade” system to reduce greenhouse gas emissions statewide, it was widely agreed the funds raised would be spent on programs that reduce these emissions in their own right. With nearly 40% of the state’s greenhouse gas coming from the transportation sector, it makes sense for a hearty investment in active transportation and transit.

Yet, according to Ryan Wiggins, the cap and trade Director for TransForm, many political figures and car-culture advocacy groups are arguing that cap and trade transportation dollars should go towards improving road conditions. By making it easier for vehicles to go faster, it will reduce the individual emissions of each vehicle. This logic is applied regularly when Caltrans and Metro officials argue about the need to widen freeways such as the 710 Big Dig Project or the never-ending 405 Widening Project in the Sepulveda Pass.

Yet many local advocates agree with Wiggins, that funding active transportation and transit need to be the priority when the state’s Air Resrouces Board (CARB) decides how to allocate its funds. Yesterday, CARB held a hearing in Downtown Los Angeles and advocates attended to make the case for a cleaner transportation network that creates transportation options and reduces emissions and transportation costs.

“ We need investment in transit, especially transit operating budgets, and active transportation infrastructure to support the GHG emission reduction goals of SB 375. Federal and state transportation funding has been stagnant and even declining for years”, said Denny Zane, Executive Director of Move LA. Read more…


Move LA Fundraiser Attracts 30/10 Movers, Asks “What’s Shakin?”

Denny Zane works the crowd while L.A. City Council Man Paul Koretz rocks a Hawaiian Shirt.  Photo: Carter Rubin

Denny Zane works the crowd while L.A. City Council Man Paul Koretz rocks a Hawaiian Shirt. Photo: Carter Rubin

On Sunday morning, transit reform champions Move LA hosted a garden party to raise money for its campaign to support Mayor Villaraigosa’s 30/10 plan and to enlist Los Angeles’ stalwart political activists in its efforts.  Held in the often traffic-swarmed West LA neighborhood of Brentwood, the event was organized by Streetsblog friend and Huffington Post transportation writer Joel Epstein.

Brought on board by Denny Zane this summer, Epstein is helping Move LA broaden nationally its coalition of labor, business, and environmental groups.  Expanding its clout beyond Southern California would help Move LA convince Washington to support the kinds of infrastructure financing reform – i.e. a national infrastructure bank – that could make 30/10 feasible, as well as benefit other localities hoping to take on similar projects.

The event featured an array of local leaders who came to pledge their support, including: US Rep. Jane Harman (D – Venice), CA State Assemblymember Mike Feuer (42nd Dist.), Los Angeles City Controller Wendy Greuel, LA City Councilmember Paul Koretz, Inglewood Mayor Danny Tabor, and Santa Monica City Councilmember Terry O’Day. Read more…