League of Women Voters Holds Debate on RM3

The debate at Berkeley City College on Tuesday, May 8 was sponsored by the League of Women Voters. On the Pro side were Dave Campbell of Bike East Bay and Josh Huber of the East Bay Leadership Council. On the Con side were David Schonbrunn of TRANSDEF and Joe Grcar, “a pissed off citizen.” The overall debate lasted 1 hour. Highlights: Opening Statement by Joe Grcar Money grab by Silicon Valley Business–Unfair RM3 is an unconstitutional tax Reduce congestion by eliminating Express Lanes and encouraging ridesharing Closing Statement by David Schonbrunn    

More

TRANSDEF Debated RM3 on KQED Forum

TRANSDEF’s President David Schonbrunn was paired with the Bay Area Council’s President Jim Wonderman on the Tuesday, May 8 broadcast of KQED Forum, 88.5 FM. Forum is the Bay Area’s premiere public affairs show. (Press the red Listen button) In his 4-minute opening statement, Schonbrunn asserts that because the MTC, Bay Area Council, Silicon Valley Leadership Group and SPUR, the sponsors of RM3, have been heading in the wrong direction, the toll increase won’t reduce traffic:    In this short segment, Schonbrunn discusses the solution to congestion as eliminating so-called Express Lanes (High-Occupancy Toll lanes) and heavily promoting ridesharing:

More

East Bay Times Publishes RM3 Pro-Con

TRANSDEF covered the Con side in the East Bay Times’ coverage of the arguments for and against Regional Measure 3. The arguments against the measure focused on the long-term failure of MTC’s transportation planning to produce any desirable results, leading to the expectation that plan for RM3 will similarly fail to improve transportation.

More

Cupertino City Council Votes to Oppose RM3

In a highly unusual agenda item, the Cupertino City Council discussed the flaws in Regional Measure 3 and voted to oppose it. They will send a letter to other elected officials, informing them of their reasons for doing so. The item starts with public testimony on the measure, led off by TRANSDEF. Councilmember Steven Scharf offered a striking slide presentation. Vice-Mayor Rod Sinks presented a passionate and thorough recounting of the promises to Cupertino that have been broken by VTA. Councilmember Barry Chang urged the Council to take a leadership role in opposing the measure. Finally, the Council formulated its final…

More

New Opinion Piece Opposes RM3

Zelda Bronstein, famous for her long-form reporting on MTC, had her opinion piece on RM3 published in Berkeleyside. Her best quote: Regional Measure 3 is bold all right: it’s a massive con that dedicates $4.5 billion to a hodgepodge of disconnected projects that will bring the Bay Area little traffic relief. The piece captures the highlights of comments made by elected officials opposed to the measure.

More

South Bay Leaders Refuse to Follow the Pack

Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors President Joe Simitian of Palo Alto and Mountain View Mayor Lenny Siegel were described in the Palo Alto Daily Post as not supporting Regional Measure 3. Mayor Siegel appears to have agreed with TRANSDEF’s position, expressed in a recent Mercury News opinion piece: Siegel said that the tech company lobbyist Guardino’s support of the measure shows that big employers are trying to “externalize their transportation costs” by passing them on to the general population.   “Some of us believe that the right way to pay for transit is to tax the employers bringing traffic…

More

TRANSDEF Opposition to RM3 Published in Mercury News

TRANSDEF’s opinion piece “Toll Increase Would Condemn Bay Area To Gridlock” was published in the Sunday print version of the Mercury News. The subheading is “If the Metropolitan Transportation Commission knew how to cut traffic, it would have done so by now.” The piece was specifically targeted for Silicon Valley, and identifies Silicon Valley business as major funders of the Yes on RM3 Campaign, and asks “Are Silicon Valley businesses trying to stick the public with the cost of transporting their workers?” The opinion piece explains that Regional Measure 3 is going to trap the Bay Area in its current trend,…

More

Key Congressman Opposes RM3

In an unexpected blow to the credibility of Regional Measure 3, a Congressman with long ties to transportation has written an opposition to the measure. Rep. Mark DeSaulnier (D-Concord) rebukes Bay Area politicians and MTC in particular: Now is the time to stop this cycle of waste and frustration and to engage in serious and coordinated planning, because the Bay Area needs and deserves better. Without greater transparency and accountability, Regional Measure 3 would result in, at best, moderate improvements in the short run, but no meaningful solution in the long term. This criticism is especially significant, because of the depth…

More