Transportation headlines, Monday, Aug. 19

Here is a look at some of the transportation headlines gathered by us and the Metro Library. The full list of headlines is posted on the Library’s Transportation Headlines online newspaper, which you can also access via email subscription (visit the newspaper site) or RSS feed.

Major transit projects at risk due to Washington budget battle (L.A. Times)

As you’ve heard us mention more than once, D.C. budget battles could have dire consequences for the Purple Line extension, the Regional Connector and the California bullet train, as well as other projects important to our region and our state. The issues are complex but this well-reasoned piece explains some of the ins and outs and why they matter.

Feds delay threat to withhold California’s mass transit funds (Sacramento Bee)

More on the same threat to regional transit projects and with billions of mass-transit dollars at stake…the U.S. Department of Labor said Friday that it would delay ruling on whether California’s new pension reform law violates a 49-year-old federal statute that ties the funds to collective bargaining rights. The delay continues as talks are underway between the feds and Gov. Jerry Brown’s office.

Despite legal hurdles, Uber car sharing expands (L.A. Daily News)

Ride-sharing service Uber has expanded operations into the San Fernando Valley, Pasadena and the South Bay, even though the company was ordered by the city to stop operating some parts of its business in June. At issue is whether Uber and other firms operating under the same business model are violating the city’s taxicab regulations by using drivers that are not licensed to carry passengers and driving cars that are not inspected or properly insured. Uber, which uses a smartphone app to connect passengers with paid drivers, has faced similar battles in New York, Chicago, Seattle and San Francisco.

Bullet train dealt a new setback (San Francisco Chronicle)

Dealing a major blow to California’s high-speed rail project, a Sacramento County judge ruled Friday that the agency overseeing the bullet train failed to comply with the financial and environmental promises made to voters when they approved initial funding for the project five years ago.

7 replies

  1. Read and re read please. When did I say job security was a priority? No need to respond, because I’m not arguing.

  2. Transit Rider,

    I have to disagree. Job security should never be the priority. Job security should only come by getting their job done right. Job security is not something to be taken for granted nor be protected.

    It’s thinking like these that give us poor customer service by unionized bus drivers and uncaring politicians and bureaucrats because they know they have job security and get paid handsomely no matter how poorly they do their job. You try this in the private sector, these people will be out of a job in a flash.

    Politicians, bureaucrats and public employee unions are paid for with our tax dollars. The only reason they have a job is because taxpayers funds. If taxpayer funds run dry, then they are out of a job. And thanks to democracy, if taxpayers think government isn’t doing a good job, taxpayers do have the power to overturn laws and kick the incumbent politicians out of office.

    So long as they are paid with our dime and their votes are reliant on our cast ballots, their first and primary job function is to get the job done, now and immediately. We’re not paying and electing these bozos to play stupid political games, tie themselves up with red tape and come up with lame excuses all in the name of “job security.”

  3. Bureaucracy is job security for a politician. I held faith, since infrastructure can be a job creator, but I guess politics are more important than giving the people what we voted for within a reasonable time frame without the worry of our “dream” being snatched away. These are literal jerk moves.

  4. At least this judge sees the light that the first segment need to go Merced to SFV to connect northern and southern California. Now we just need to get it to go down I5, rather than out of the way to Palmdale. This way, even if the rest of the project is delayed or never built, this center link can still be used for Amtrak, regional rail or maybe even fast lite weight freight trains.

  5. What this article shows is that government at all levels (federal, state, and local), bureaucrats, politicians both left and right, unions, are all the same – they’re all broken. They slow down everything, they pretend that they’re doing something, while raping the public for more taxes, while pocketing all the money for themselves.

    People are getting tired of all of this. Everything runs too slow for today. Why can’t things be fast and simple? Pass law, bam! Build it. Idea makes sense, bam! Just do it. Too many stupid laws, regulations, bureaucratic red tape, useless government studies, excuses, frivolous lawsuits, corruption, greedy unions, all contribute nothing to hard working taxpayers who earn less and less, while these people earn more and more.

    Sooner or later, people are going to get fed up with all of this, if not already.

  6. This is awesome, My voting power feels validated, I mean, a President that promised twice to invest in more infrastructure; Our City is building a line to connect the airport; we are getting a subway to the sea, High Speed Rail from SD to SF, A connection to Ontario Airport, and maybe even sit down discussion with bigfoot. What did we vote for in 2008 again?