Please join us at the Conference Center of the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels on March 1 in downtown Los Angeles! This is the event where we built the coalition and momentum to pass both Measures R (2008) and M (2016), and this year we have another proposition—a 4-county ballot measure to dump diesel and conquer climate change! (Note LA Mayor Eric Garcetti once said we stage the biggest panels in the known universe!) Register HERE.
7:30 a.m. NETWORKING w/delicious hot breakfast + coffee = reason to come on over early! (See menu below!)
8:30 a.m. WELCOME Move LA Director Denny Zane and Board Chair Marlene Grossman
9:00 a.m. KEYNOTE LA Metro CEO Phil Washington on congestion pricing, free transit and more!
9:20 a.m. PANEL#1 REBUILDING TRANSIT RIDERSHIP IN LA COUNTY CA Sen. Ben Allen (Chair, Environmental Quality) • CA Sen. Holly Mitchell (Chair, Senate Budget) • Asm. Chris Holden, (Chair, Asm. Utilities and Energy) • Mike Fong (President, LA Community College District Board of Trustees) • Margaret Quinones-Perez (Chair, Santa Monica College Board of Trustees) • UCLA Professor Emeritus Donald Shoup • UCLA graduate student Romel Lopez • Devon Deming (Director, LA Metro Commute Services) • Stephanie Ramirez (AARP Associate State Director) • Lillibeth Navarro (Executive Director, CALIF) • Brandi Orton (Government Relations Director, St. Barnabus Senior Services)
10:45 a.m. BREAK
10:45 a.m. PANEL#2 PROTECTING AND BUILDING AFFORDABLE HOUSING NEAR TRANSIT W/O DISPLACEMENT Cynthia Strathmann (Strategic Actions for a Just Economy, SAJE) • Mariana Huerta Jones (Alliance for Community Transit Los Angeles, ACT-LA) • Natalie Hernandez (Climate Resolve) • Larry Kosmont (Kosmont Companies) • Cecilia Estolano (Estolano LeSar Advisors) • Sue Himmelrich (Western Center on Law and Poverty)
12 Noon LUNCH KEYNOTES: CA Sen. Kevin de Leon (former CA Senate President Pro Tem) • Mary Nichols (Chair, California Air Resources Board)
12:30 p.m. PANEL#3 VISION 2020: DUMP DIESEL, CONQUER CLIMATE CHANGE, ENHANCE METROLINK & CLEAN TRANSIT ACROSS REGION CA Sen. Fran Pavley (Ret.) • Stephanie Wiggins (CEO, Metrolink) • Ron Miller (Executive Secretary, LA-OC Building & Construction Trades Council) • Danny Curtin (Director, California Council of Carpenters) • Cesar Diaz (Legislative & Political Director, CA State Building Trades) • John Hakel (Director, SoCal Partnership for Jobs) • John Boesel (President & CEO, Calstart) • David Grannis (Founder & CEO, pointC, LLC) • Joe Lyou (President & CEO, Coalition for Clean Air and Governor's Appointee to the South Coast Air Quality Management District's Governing Board) • Marc Carrel (President & CEO of BREATHE California of LA and also of Emphysema Foundation of America) • Adrian Martinez (Staff Attorney, Earth Justice) • mark! Lopez (Executive Director, East Yard Communities for Environmental Justice) • Quentin Foster (Director of California Climate, Environmental Defense Fund) • Dawn Wilson (Manager of Air, Climate & Transportation Electrification Policy, SoCal Edison) • Tanya Peacock (Public Policy & Planning Manager, SoCal Gas) • Todd Campbell (VP of Public Policy & Regulatory Affairs, Clean Energy Fuels) • Rory Stewart (Policy & Program Associate, LA Business Council) • Tracy Hernandez (CEO of BizFed).
2:30-3 p.m. CLOSING REMARKS
*Breakfast menu: Seasonal fresh fruit, fluffy scrambled eggs, breakfast potatoes, crispy bacon, scones & assorted pastries, butter and preserves, orange juice, freshly brewed coffee and assortment of teas.
Here we go dreaming big again. It's what we do. This is version 17 of our Vision 2020 Straw Man. We had 33 versions of our Measure M Straw Man. Call or email us and weigh in on what you think should be different.
Move LA's 2019 workplan makes environmental and social justice a priority on 3 major fronts, and we are looking to expand our coalition to help create campaigns that can win. Our endeavors in all these areas in the past have met with success, but we need an expanded and even more robust coalition—and the input that new partners can provide—to achieve the following goals:
- Expand access to public transit services for underserved populations: It is our goal to win funding in the Legislature and support from LA Metro for a truly universal student transit pass program, with funding likely to come from the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund as we believe discounted student passes could greatly help reduce VMT. Toward this end we will be working to expand transit, micro-transit, and Access services for seniors and people with disabilities in LA County. We will also be working to keep fares low and oppose fare increases in LA County to ensure transit remains affordable to low- and very-low-income households.
Expand the supply of affordable housing, especially near transit:
- Move LA championed the creation of the Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities (AHSC) program by the Legislature in 2014, making it 1 of the 4 programs benefiting from 60% of the proceeds from the state's Cap & Trade program and are deposited in the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund. AHSC provides funding for affordable housing near transit in developments that also win funding for urban greening and for improvements that make them walkable and bikeable. We have been engaged in protecting funding for the program and would like to see it expanded.
- Gov. Brown signed Sen. Ben Allen's SB 961 this year, a bill we sponsored to allow the creation of "NIFTI-2" tax increment financing districts that will allocate 40% of the tax increment for affordable housing, 10% for urban greening and active transportation, and 50% for transit capital projects and other neighborhood improvements. In 2019 we will work to make it easier for cities and counties to implement these districts.
- We are concerned that in the rush to build more housing near transit in California we are concerned—as are many housing advocates—that residents who already live in these neighborhoods will be displaced as buildings are town down and replaced with more expensive ones. We intend to work with all those concerned to ensure that low-income residents are not displaced.
Build a coalition and a program for what we call Vision 2020—a ballot measure that will provide funding:
- To expand, modernize and electrify Metrolink, SoCal's regional commuter rail system;
- To provide a "local return" that enables each county to expand its transit system and services;
- To reduce air pollution—especially diesel emissions and GHGs—dramatically by providing incentive funding to accelerate the deployment of zero- and near-zero emission light- and medium-duty cars, SUVs and trucks, and heavy-duty trucks.
Join us in 2019 because together we can win all of these things and dump diesel and conquer climate change in the process! Read this if you want to know more about our work on these issues in the past and our new 2019 workplan.
Diesel exhaust is our No. 1 environmental justice challenge in Southern California, and the low-income communities of color living along Southern California's heavily trafficked goods movement corridors are the most heavily exposed. These “diesel death zones”—along the I-710 and 60 freeway corridors, for example—are unhealthy places in which to live, work and play, and we must address this inequity.
During his election campaign Governor-elect Gavin Newsom declared that he would seek an end to diesel emissions in California by 2030 through the deployment of cleaner technologies and cleaner cars and trucks. This is a public health and environmental justice IMPERATIVE, and it is the core objective of our Vision 2020 plan, because:
- California has declared diesel exhaust a toxic air contaminant and a primary cause of lung cancer, second only to smoking.
- Long-term exposure to diesel exhaust increases the risk of lung cancer. More.
- Diesel particle levels in California's air could cause 540 "excess" cancers (beyond the number that would occur if there were no diesel particles in the air) in a population of 1 million people over a 70-year lifespan.
- Numerous studies have linked elevated particle levels in the air to increased hospital admissions, emergency room visits, asthma attacks and premature deaths among those suffering from respiratory problems.
- Exposure to diesel exhaust can have immediate health effects: It can irritate the eyes, nose, throat and lungs, and can cause coughs, headaches, light-headedness and nausea.
- Diesel pollutants are known to reduce lung capacity, increase risk for asthma, reduce IQs, and even cause aggressive behaviors in youth.
Read more about our Vision 2020 plan HERE.
We believe that in order to meet California's climate goals we must build transit ridership, and that a discounted student transit pass program for all public college and university students statewide is key to growing ridership: These are student riders are especially important because they may start making decisions about where to live and work based on whether there's transit nearby—they may even develop a life-long transit habit—and this is a program that would also reduce the cost of getting an education for both student riders and for schools.
Renown UCLA Professor Donald Shoup and other UCLA researchers published a landmark study of 35 universal student transit pass programs around the US in 2001 finding, among other things, that these programs increased transit ridership from 71% to 200%, and reduced the cost of going to school by $2,000/year since students didn’t have to own a car (these costs are probably much higher now).
Professor Shoup has supported our efforts to get the California Legislature to create a statewide transit pass program, pointing out in one letter that "UCLA established a university transit pass program, BruinGO, in Fall 2000. Bus ridership for commuting to campus in increased by 56% during BruinGO’s first year, and solo driving fell by 20%.
"Three years of commuting data showed the surprisingly high cost-effectiveness of BruinGO. During its first year, BruinGO cost only $810,000, and the drive-alone share for commuting to campus declined by 4.1%. Three years after BruinGO began, UCLA opened a new $47 million parking structure, and the drive-alone share increased by 4 percentage points. Offering fare-free public transit to reduce parking demand was far cheaper than spending $47 million to add 1,500 new parking spaces. (Italics are Move LA's.)
We believe that our new governor will support a statewide student transit pass program unlike his predecessor, who had other priorities. We will keep you updated on our progress! Read more about our student transit pass strategy HERE.
Welcome 2019! Bring it on! We've begun the New Year by moving from our previous home in the MALDEF building on Spring Street and 7th into a shared office space at the LA Clean Tech Incubator in the Arts District, where we're planning for a year of transformational opportunity—beginning with our Vision 2020 plan to help Southern California dump diesel, conquer climate change, and become a model for the world!
It's been a good decade for Move LA and our ever-expanding coalition of civic and community leaders. We made a real impact teeing up Measures R (2008) and M (2016) to provide $160 billion for transportation (70% for transit) in LA County. Then we played a significant role in winning votes for Measure H (2017) to help end homelessness in LA County) and in protecting $5 billion/year in statewide transportation funding (2018)—voters in LA County rejected Prop 6 by the largest margin, 60.05% to 39.95%, compared to 55% to 45% statewide!
Can we top that? That's our goal! On our 2019 to-do list:
- Convince our new governor to sign a bill creating a statewide universal discounted student transit pass program to increase transit ridership and help reduce the cost of an education.
- Make it easier to approve tax increment financing districts so Sen. Allen’s SB 961, which we sponsored and which was signed by Gov. Brown last year, can make it possible for more transit riders to live near transit in mixed-income, mixed-use, green and leafy neighborhoods. (SB 961 would create a TIF dedicating 40% for affordable housing, 10% for urban greening, and 50% for transit capital projects and other neighborhood improvements.)
- Launch our campaign to dump diesel and conquer climate change! Bold, right?! We’re building a 4-county coalition to work with the South Coast Air Quality Management District on a regional ballot measure to 1) reduce GHGs by accelerating the deployment of clean technologies and vehicles 2) expand and electrify Metrolink 3) finally meet Clean Air Act standards (for the first time. The result will be an expanding market for clean cars and trucks that will bring the price and GHG emissions down.
As you know, we believe that fortune favors the bold. Join us in 2019!
Californians have rejected Proposition 6, the effort to repeal SB-1 and eliminate $5 billion/year for badly needed transportation repairs and improvements—a major victory for transportation advocacy in California! And voters in LA County rejected Prop 6 by an even larger margin, 60.05% to 39.95% with all precincts reporting, compared to 55% to 45% statewide!
THANK YOU LA COUNTY VOTERS! And look forward to smoother roads, more bike lanes, better sidewalks, and the acceleration of transit projects—to be completed before the 2028 Olympics!—including the Airport Metro Connector, the East San Fernando Valley light rail line, the West Santa Ana light rail line to Artesia, bus rapid transit from the San Fernando Valley to the San Gabriel Valley, and extensions of the Green Line to Torrance and the Foothill Gold Line to Montclair.
Business, labor, cities, elected officials, enviros and community organizations staged an impressive show of force last Tuesday at the Red Line station in North Hollywood, with Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti as host of the show, and everyone in agreement that Californians must VOTE NO on Prop 6!
"This is the most important election of your life—which I can say with credibility since I'm not on the ballot!" said Garcetti. "It's important because of national and local issues and because if there's one thing that Californians want it's to fix our roads. We want a guarantee that transportation and traffic will be addressed. And if Prop 6 passes 900 road projects will hit the brakes. You get what you pay for so vote NO on Prop 6!"
The LA Times said this in their editorial urging a no vote: "It's hard to overstate how destructive Proposition 6 would be for California. Vote no." Then long-time LA Times political columnist George Skelton said it again a few weeks later: "California needs to fix its crumbling roads. There’s a massive $130-billion backlog in maintenance," he wrote. "This has to be paid for by motorists."
So just to be clear: Prop 6 would jeopardize public safety by eliminating funding for 6,500 transportation repair and improvement projects now underway across the state. This would eliminate thousands of jobs, which would hurt the economy. It's opposed by firefighters, highway patrolmen, engineers, and organizations representing cities, counties, public interests, public health, seniors, environmentalists, social justice advocates, education, faith-based interests, business, labor, and transportation/infrastructure—like us at Move LA.
Take our word for it: ENDORSE NO ON PROP 6 HERE AND VOTE NO ON TUESDAY!
The newest issue of the Planning Report discusses the looming crisis in the condition of California's transportation infrastructure and the backlog of an estimated $130 billion in repairs—nearly the equivalent of the state's entire General Fund! Deteriorating roads and bridges pose a significant risk to all who use them, and cost drivers more than an average of $700/year in vehicle repairs.
Then there are the less obvious costs: "A well-maintained transportation infrastructure is fundamental to a thriving economy," Denny Zane told the Planning Report, adding that "Properly maintaining our highway system is far less expensive than having to replace it in the future." Read more in the Planning Report HERE.
Prop 6 would repeal SB-1, a bill written with input from business, labor, and local government leaders that won a 2/3 vote in the Legislature before being signed into law last year. LA County Federation of Labor AFL-CIO President Rusty Hicks notes that we're only just beginning to see the benefits, which will include "more good jobs for working people and a stronger economy for us all." He adds that since Prop 6 was put on the ballot the coalition defending it has grown quickly, noting: "Solutions to our region's biggest problems are often found in coalition with the unlikeliest of partners . . . and [the No on Prop 6 coalition] has grown in breadth and depth. Environmental organizations and civil rights leaders, pubic safety officials and public interest groups, senior organizations and leaders in public health—they all opposed Proposition 6."
JOIN THIS VERY BIG COALITION AND ENDORSE NO ON PROP 6 HERE! See the 600+ coalition members HERE.
About 15% of SB-1 funding will be spent each year on transit projects and active transportation, and LA Metro intends to spend this transit funding accelerating construction of the Airport Metro Connector, the East San Fernando Valley light rail line, the West Santa Ana light rail line to Artesia, bus rapid transit from the San Fernando Valley to the San Gabriel Valley, and extending the Green Line to Torrance and the Foothill Gold Line to Montclair.
Concluded Denny: "SB 1 is the perfect complement to Measures R and M—both approved by LA County voters by more than a 2/3 vote . . . While SB 1 also provides significant funding to accelerate completion of our transit priorities, its primary function is to do for our deteriorated roads, streets, highways and bridges what R and M are doing for our transit systems. If Prop 6 is defeated, and these investments continue, it will be a pretty remarkable time to be living in LA County."
Today Governor Brown signed Sen. Ben Allen's SB 961, sponsored by Move LA, allowing local governments to create enhanced infrastructure finance districts (EIFDs) near high-frequency bus and rail corridors and in the half-mile radius around stations—with 40% of the tax increment going to affordable housing, 10% to urban greening and active transportation, and the remaining 50% for transit capital projects and other neighborhood improvements. We believe this bill, the “Second Neighborhood In ll Finance and Transit Improvements Act” or NIFTI-2, can become an important funding source to improve neighborhoods near transit and make them affordable and attractive places where people will want to live and investors want to invest.
Prioritizing construction of this housing near transit for low- and very-low-income residents and people who are homeless is appropriate given the shortage of affordable housing in our communities and the recognition that low-income residents are far more likely to become frequent transit users. The remainder of the tax increment can also make these new and improved neighborhoods more transit-oriented and should include bus rapid transit, shaded bus stops, bike lanes, better and wider sidewalks, and/or new rail stations that can serve as an anchor for activity and development and provide a source of neighborhood vitality.
California needs to recognize that these investments can encourage community development along many of the underutilized commercial corridors that thread through California’s towns and cities, and which are often served by high-frequency transit. These corridors typically fall below the radar of housing developers and might not attract any development at all if investments are not made to show off their potential as transit-oriented neighborhoods that are mixed-income and mixed-use. Such corridors can be especially signi cant opportunities if a transit operator develops high-frequency BRT service there.
Including both affordable and market-rate housing to achieve a mix of incomes is essential to this “community-redevelopment-type” strategy. Market rate housing will help ensure that the tax increment increases so that it can be bonded against to generate the funding that’s needed to make the improvements and to support the develop- ment of local retail and services.
SB 961’s proposal allows bonding against the tax increment in NIFTI-2 districts without voter approval, though, like the CRIA program signed into law in 2016, SB 961 creates a community petition process that can trigger such a public vote. Bonding against the increment is an essential element of any EIFD program because it enables near-term investment in neighborhood improvements, thereby helping to attract developer interest in places that may otherwise not appear to be welcoming investment.
We'd like to thank all those who signed on to our letters of support: Cesar Diaz - State Building & Construction Trades Council of California, Ron Miller - Los Angeles/Orange Counties Building & Construction Trades Council, Stephanie Wang - California Housing Partnership Corporation, Andrew Gross - Thomas Safran Associates, Carter Rubin - National Resources Defense Council, Alan Greenlee - Southern California Association of Non-Profit Housing, Brian Augusta California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation, Tracy Hernandez - Los Angeles County Business Federation, Bryn Lindblad - Climate Resolve, Bill Magavern Coalition for Clean Air, Hilary Norton Fixing Angelenos Stuck in Traffic, Larry Gross Coalition for Economic Survival, Michael Dieden - Creative Housing Associates, Lisa Hershey - Housing California, Patricia Hoffman - Santa Monicans For Renters Rights, Tony Salazar - McCormack Baron Salazar, William Allen - Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation, Anya Lawler - Western Center on Law and Poverty, Josh Stark- Transform, Will Wright - American Institute of Architects – Los Angeles, Chuck Mills - California ReLeaf