This opinion piece from the Time’s Jon Healey is in response to yesterday’s announcement that Japanese rail manufacturer Kinkisharyo reached an agreement with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) to keep assembly of Metro’s new light rail vehicles in Palmdale. The news came after months of stalled negotiations and a California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) challenge to Kinkisharyo’s proposed assembly plant location.
The agreement reached yesterday satisfied both parties’ demands and ensured those jobs are staying in Los Angeles County. It should be good news all around, but according to Healey, it isn’t for CEQA:
The episode represents another black eye for CEQA and those who rely on it to protect against developments that damage the environment and clog their communities. That’s because the willingness of Kinkisharyo’s opponents to use the threat of CEQA lawsuits to gain leverage in labor negotiations only adds fuel to the drive by business groups to defang the act.
One problem, which Healey identifies, is that it’s difficult to distinguish those that are using CEQA as it was intended and those using it with ulterior motives.
If you’re planning to head out of town and you’re reading this, it might be too late! Trips today are expected to take 36 percent longer than average — exceeding the national average by 10 percent — according to Inrix, a firm that crunches traffic data. Peak travel times today are from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. All the more reason to take public transit if traveling locally. Trailing close behind Los Angeles on the list for worst day before Thanksgiving traffic are Portland, San Francisco and Seattle.
Even though driving today will be a major traffic headache, those of you heading to the airport can rest a little easier knowing today is only the 27th worst day of the year to travel. Of course, this ranking doesn’t take into account nasty weather (but it does show weather delays in November aren’t the norm).
On that note, we at The Source want to wish you and your family a Happy Thanksgiving and safe travels wherever you’re heading! We’ll return to normal posting on Monday, December 1st. Until then, we leave you with a pair of transportation-relevant items….
Categories: Transportation Headlines