5 Hours Left: Call Senators Lara and De Leon to Support Student Transit Passes

Despite the enormous difficulty Democrats and Republicans in the California Legislature have had reaching agreement on how to fund transportation and which projects to fund, they have agreed on AB 2222, which would create a statewide discounted student transit pass program for low-income K-12 and public college and university students! Proof is in the votes (starting with the most recent and counting backwards): Senate Environmental Quality 6-0; Senate Transportation and Housing 7-0; Assembly Floor 72-7; Assembly Appropriations 18-2; Assembly Transportation 18-0. The organizations above are just some of the supporters of AB 2222.

CALL TO ACTION! AB 2222, authored by Asm. Chris Holden (D-Pasadena), was put on suspense in Senate Appropriations Monday, and a decision whether to take it off suspense so that it can continue to move forward this session will be made tomorrow — Thursday, Aug. 11. The decision will be made by the Appropriations Committee and its chair, Sen. Richardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens), and will also involve Senate President Pro Tem Kevin De Leon. If we want AB 2222 to continue moving forward it's key that we reach out and urge Senate Appropriations Committee members to support student passes.

The members are: Senator Ricardo Lara (Chair) (D-Bell Gardens) 916-651-4033  °  Senator Patricia Bates (Vice Chair) (R-Laguna Niguel) 916-651-4036  °  Senator Jim Beall (D-San Jose) 916 651-4015  °  Senator Jerry Hill (D-San Mateo) 916-651-4013  °  Senator Mike McGuire (D-Healdsburg) 916-651-4902  °  Senator Tony Mendoza (D-Artesia) 916-651-4032  °  Senator Jim Nielsen (R-Gerber) 916-651-4004 

Also: Senate President Pro Tem Kevin De Leon (D-Los Angeles) 916-651-4024.

Please call all committee members and Senator De Leon if you can. Tell the person who answers the phone that AB 2222 was up in committee on Monday and that you urge the senator to support the bill, which would create a statewide discounted student transit pass program for K-12 and public college and university students. They will ask you for your name and that’s it!

The funding source for AB 2222 had been $50M/year from the GHG Reduction Fund, but this language was removed from the bill because the future of the GGRF and the Cap & Trade program that funds it have become somewhat uncertain given the lawsuit against and opposition to Cap & Trade.

However, it appears the chairs of the Senate and Assembly transportation committees, Senator Jim Beall (D-San Jose) and Assemblymember Jim Frazier (D-Oakley)—who have been trying to pass transportation funding bills for a year!—may be reaching agreement on a funding source. There is a possibility that given the broad bipartisan support for AB 2222 that this money could fund student transit passes too!!

Call Gloria Ohland at Move LA (a co-sponsor of AB2222) if you have questions: 213-304-0444

What is LA Metro's Ballot Measure?


Tentatively called Measure M, it is “LA County’s Traffic Improvement Plan” that has been placed on the November 2016 ballot by LA Metro to ease congestion across the county. If Measure M wins a 2/3 majority vote in November it would provide approximately $120 billion over 40 years to significantly expand the rail transit system and support the bus system all over LA County, as well as provide first and last mile connections to stations for people on foot and on bike and users of all ages and abilities.

The ballot measure would also pay for important highway improvements, and provide funding to all 88 cities in LA County to address local needs including street repairs such as filling potholes, synchronizing traffic signals, supporting local transit service, and investing in pedestrian and bicycle improvements. Measure M would create a dramatically improved transportation system to redefine commutes for residents in every corner of the county to get all of us where we want to go, when we want to get there, however we choose to travel! MORE TO COME . . .

Paid for by Campaign to Move LA, in Support of Transportation Ballot Measure M, Major Funding by Aaron Sosnick, HDR Engineering, Inc. & Jacobs Engineering Group, Inc.

Center for Transportation Excellence Profiles LA County Traffic Improvement Plan Campaign


This profile reminds us that we lost the Measure J ballot measure by .57% in 2012--just 15,000 votes--in a campaign that got off the ground barely 2 months before the vote. There's been much more prep done for the so-called Measure M (name is still not official) sales tax measure campaign to raise in excess of $120 billion for transportation: The Center for Transportation Excellence profile says Metro has provided information to 2.9 million people via social media and that 48,000 people participated in telephone town halls and other outreach events in May. More than 560 people went to public meetings about the measure and 73 percent said they'd vote for it. So we'll see. The profile is here and it references Move LA.


Paid for by Campaign to Move LA, in Support of Transportation Ballot Measure M, Major Funding by Aaron Sosnick, HDR Engineering, Inc. & Jacobs Engineering Group, Inc.

LA Area Chamber Endorses New Sales Tax Measure: "A Bold Transportation Plan for LA County"


Gary Toebben, president and CEO of the LA Area Chamber of Commerce, writes on his Business Perspective Blog: In 2008, Los Angeles County residents took a leap of faith and voted to raise our county-wide sales taxes to fund the construction and maintenance of our transportation infrastructure. Seven years later, Metro conducted a quality of life report to study the impact of that decision on the region. The results are impressive. New rail and bus rapid transit now provides access to more than 300,000 jobs in the region. Nearly 500,000 residents now live within a half mile of projects that opened after passage of Measure R. (Italics are mine!) What’s impressive is that this data was tallied prior to the 2016 openings of the Gold Line extension and Expo Phase II.

Read more

Foot Traffic Ahead: Ranking Walkable Urbanism in the Largest Metros


A new report finds there are 619 regionally significant walkable urban places (or “WalkUPS”) in the 30 largest metro areas—home to 46% of the US population—and that the 6-county LA metro region ranks #17 with 53 WalkUPS. (The top 6: NYC, Washington DC, Boston, Chicago, San Francisco and Seattle.) LA ranks #7 in terms of “Development Momentum”—a ranking that indicates how walkable or sprawling future development is likely to be—#11 in terms of social equity (now that is counterintuitive!), and 27th in terms of GDP per capita.

The key point made in the report, by Chris Leinberger and Michael Rodriguez at the George Washington University School of Business, is that: the more walkable cities also have the most development momentum, and are the most educated and wealthy (as measured by per capita GDP) because that’s where people want to live and where companies want to locate. (LA is somewhat of an anomaly, I think, because the density, urbanity and walkability of LA County is in striking contrast to that in the 5 other counties that comprise our region, skewing our scores.)

Given what we all know about skyrocketing rents it’s hard to believe that these walkable urban places are also the most socially equitable. But this is because, according to the report, low cost transportation options—especially walking and biking—and better access to employment opportunities offset the higher costs of housing. Which underscores “the need for continued and aggressive development of attainable housing solutions,” the authors point out. Download the report here.

AC Transit, Like Metro, is Rolling Out a New Student Transit Program this Fall


AC Transit is rolling out a free and reduced-fare transit pass pilot at 11 middle- and high-schools in Alameda County this fall, funded by the Measure BB sales tax passed in 2014. (NOTE: AB 2222, a bill that Move LA is co-sponsoring, would provide funding for a statewide program if it wins the support of CA Senate leadership next month!) AC Transit's program for kids is similar to the program Metro will roll out for college and university students—both will negotiate different agreements with each schools. AC Transit Board President Christian Peeples said that anything that grows a new generation of public transit riders is probably a boon for the agency. Move LA agrees! http://www.eastbaytimes.com/…/free-and-reduced-fare-transit…

Why Does LA County Need a Sales Tax Measure for Transportation?


LA Mayor Eric Garcetti couldn't have said it better than he did in his June 23 LA Times op-ed on why we need a new sales tax for transportation with no sunset if we are to truly tackle our transportation problems: So we can end traffic fatigue. Build and operate more transit. And trade slow and steady improvement for bold and decisive action to create a truly complete system that serves the needs of commuters today and anticipates the needs of future transit riders, with special consideration for students and our growing senior and disabled populations. Read it in the LA Times.

Paid for by Campaign to Move LA, in Support of Transportation Ballot Measure M, Major Funding by Aaron Sosnick, HDR Engineering, Inc. & Jacobs Engineering Group, Inc.

Fortune Favors the Bold


Metro’s decision on June 23 to move ahead with putting a sales tax measure with no sunset on the November ballot does more than double down on the promise of Measure R—the half cent sales tax for transportation approved by voters in 2008. Not only does it provide more money—another $860 million/year—but it extends Measure R so there is no sunset. And the combination of these 2 long-term revenue sources enables financing that will allow the acceleration of so many projects that the lesson learned is clear: Fortune favors the bold.

If voters step up and vote for the new measure—as polling shows voters are willing to do—LA County will embark on a transit expansion program that is unrivaled in the U.S.

Passing a funding measure like this requires a two-thirds vote in California, which means we have to be bold in order to build projects in all parts of LA County that will win over the necessary voters. This requires coalition politics of an extraordinary sort.

The new measure could deliver the necessary votes because it more than quadruples the connectivity of the rail system: Before Measure R riders could transfer from one line to another at 7 stations in the system, but the new measure would build projects that increase the number of transfer points to 32, enabling people to get from one corner of the county to any other corner. This is the secret sauce that will make ridership grow!

But that’s not all! Measure R did not invest in bicycle and pedestrian connections but the new measure will. So not only would there there be increased rail to rail connectivity, and bus to rail connectivity, but there will also be first-last-mile bike and pedestrian connectivity. And that adds up to a totally transformational transportation system in LA County, instead of the dystopian model we have now.

Eight years have passed since the passage of Measure R, and of the 13 elected officials who served on the Metro board then only 2 remain now who supported Measure R. We believe that our biggest contribution has been to help keep the constituencies and the coalition moving forward and the dream of a transformational transportation system alive!

6-0 Vote for AB 2222 in the Senate Environmental Quality Committee Yesterday!


The final vote was 6-0 in favor of AB 2222 (Holden, D-Pasadena) yesterday in the 7-member Senate Environmental Quality Committee—viewed as a clearing house for all GHG-related bills. (Senator Ted Gaines, R-El Dorado, was not in attendance and did not vote.) The hearing room was packed as the committee was considering some 35 bills, and there was a long line of people urging a yes vote on AB 2222, including Metro lobbyist Andrew Antwih, who reminisced about the student transit pass he used to ride RTD buses—"rough, tough and dangerous," he said the bus system was then called—to and from school in the 1980s in South LA.

Reference to the GHG Reduction Fund was removed from the bill—which would create a program to provide discounted passes to low-income K-12 and public college and university students statewide—to help ensure passage since the Cap & Trade program has become, to quote a recent LA Times story, "mired in legal, financial and political troubles that threaten to derail the state’s plans to curb greenhouse gas emissions." Assemblymember Chris Holden, the bill's author, as well as co-sponsors Move LA, Transform and other supporters will be searching for other funding sources for student passes over the next month. The bill was referred to the Senate Appropriations Committee, where it is likely to be put on suspense.

We will keep you informed! Thank you so much for your help!

Supporters of AB 2222 include: Gamaliel of California ° Housing California ° Investing in Place ° Kings Canyon Unified School District ° LA Mas ° LAANE ° Leadership Council for Justice and Accountability ° Long Beach Community College District ° Los Angeles Business Council ° Los Angeles Community College District ° Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition ° Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority ° Los Angeles Neighborhood Initiative ° Los Angeles Urban League ° Los Angeles Walks ° Los Rios Community College District ° Mt. San Antonio College ° Orange County Transportation Authority ° Pacoima Beautiful ° Pasadena Area Community College District ° Peralta Community College District ° PolicyLink ° Prevention Institute ° Public Advocates ° Safe Routes to School ° San Diego Community College District ° San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District ° San Jose Evergreen Community College District ° SLATE Z ° Southeast Asian Community Alliance ° The Trust for Public Land ° Union of Concerned Scientists ° University of California, Los Angeles ° University of Southern California (USC) ° Ventura County Transportation Commission ° Youth Policy Institute

Call Senators Ben Allen and Tony Mendoza MONDAY; AB 2222 is Heard TUESDAY


MONDAY provides one more opportunity to make a call/post/tweet to keep AB 2222 (Holden, Gonzalez) moving forward to create a program that provides discounted student transit passes for low-income K-12 and public college and university students statewide. The bill is beginning a run in the Senate and will be heard in Transportation and Housing TUESDAY!

Please call Senator Ben Allen (Santa Monica) and/or Senator Tony Mendoza (Artesia), who represent LA County on the committee, and call the chair, Senator Jim Beall. (Or call the Senator who reps a district near you—see below.) Just tell the person who answers the phone that you urge the Senator to vote for AB 2222, co-authored by Assemblymembers Chris Holden and Lorena Gonzalez, to create a program that would provide discounted student transit passes for low-income K-12 and public college and university students statewide." You will be asked for your name and home address.

And please post on fb, twitter and instagram!

Here are phone numbers: Senator Jim Beall (D-San Jose) 916-651-4015 ° Senator Anthony Cannella (R-Modesto) 916-651-4012 ° Senator Ben Allen (D-Santa Monica) 916-651-4026 ° Senator Patricia Bates (R-Laguna Niguel) 916-651-4036 ° Senator Ted Gaines (R-El Dorado) 916-651-4001 ° Senator Cathleen Galgiani (D-Stockton) 916-651-4005 ° Senator Connie M. Leyva (D-Chino) 916-651-4020° Senator Mike McGuire (D-Healdsburg) 916-651-4002 ° Senator Tony Mendoza (D-Artesia) 916-651-4032 ° Senator Richard D.Roth (R-Riverside) 916-651-4031 ° Senator Bob Wieckowski (D-Fremont)  916-651-4010

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