Monday, November 03, 2008

All Politics Is Local

For those wondering my stances on two local measures - Measure R (Los Angeles County) and Measure TT (Pasadena Unified School District) - here's my take.

YES on Measure R – Traffic Relief. Rail Extensions.
While Measure R adds a 1/2 cent sales tax - bringing Los Angeles County's sales tax rate to 8.75%, matching the highest of any county in our state - it's in support of infrastructure that we need in a dire way. Measure R will fund new rail expansion and street improvements, while accelerating those projects already underway - of the funds generated, 65% will go to transit, 20% to highways, and 15% to local government for improvements such as pothole repair and synchronization of traffic lights. Measure R will help us get the "subway to the sea" and increase light rail in the San Gabriel Valley, as well as busways and other public transit improvements in the region. Increasingly bad traffic is bad for the well-being of our communities, impacting public safety and the environment, not to mention creating a lot of crabby people. Bottom line: we need better transit options, and this is a fair way for all of us to pay for it.
More info on Measure R

NO on Measure TT – PUSD School Improvement Bond
This was a tough decision for me. While I support funding for schools, Measure Y provided funding for improvements just over a decade ago, and it appears that some of these funds were mismanaged due to lax oversight. I reviewed the projects on the Measure TT website and was disappointed to see that almost every school's first priority was upgrading the cafeteria/kitchen. I understand that the list of projects isn't finalized yet and may actually require less funding than the $350 million that Measure TT would generate. In addition, enrollment in PUSD is declining and some campuses are closing. Thus, it doesn't seem as urgent to me as the proponents would suggest.
No on Measure TT editorial from Pasadena Star-News

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