CA is not Serious about VMT Reduction

TRANSDEF’s organizational focus is the reduction of GHG emissions from transportation. Much of our work has involved the state’s policy-setting agency for climate change, the California Air Resources Board, or ARB. ARB has produced generally excellent climate change plans, called Scoping Plans. However, it has consistently been weak in the area of reducing GHG emissions from transportation, despite determining that nearly half of the state’s GHG emissions are generated by the transportation sector. Read More...

Briefing Continues in ARB case

TRANSDEF filed its Opening Brief in its challenge to ARB’s inclusion of HSR in its 2014 Scoping Plan. It’s been a long hard slog since we filed the case back in 2014, but things will move more quickly now. See this page for a copy of the brief, for ARB’s Opposition Brief, and for a description of the case’s complicated history over the past two years. Here’s the Brief’s Conclusion: Read More...

Allies Challenge AB 1899's Constitutionality

Five individuals, three non-profit organizations, the Town of Atherton and Kings County amended their lawsuit today, seeking a ruling that the California High-Speed Rail Authority's (CHSRA) efforts to obtain construction funding from a voter-approved bond measure violate the state constitution. The case is the second one filed as Tos v. California High-Speed Rail Authority, or Tos II. Legal papers are available here.

The Third District Court of Appeal had previously ruled that Prop. 1A, the 2008 $9.9 billion high-speed rail bond measure, created a "financial straitjacket" restricting the use of the bond funds. Plaintiffs allege in their suit that the Legislature's passage of AB 1889 created a tool that attempts to evade the bond measure's restrictions.

However, because AB 1889 fundamentally alters that voter-approved measure, plaintiffs allege it is unconstitutional, as are the funding plans that rely on it. Newly added as a plaintiff is retired judge and former CHSRA Chair Quentin Kopp, who helped write Prop. 1A and has joined the case to defend that measure as the voters approved it.
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One Win, One Loss

The sales tax measure for Santa Clara County passed, while the one for Contra Costa County failed. TRANSDEF’s ballot arguments were printed in the Contra Costa Voters’ Guide, so we helped defeat an ill-conceived measure.

TRANSDEF Opposes CCTA Sales Tax Measure X

The TRANSDEF Board has voted to formally oppose Contra Costa Transportation Authority’s (CCTA’s) transportation sales tax measure. Our ballot arguments were selected to be the Oppose position in the Voter Guide. Our campaign website was posted today.

TRANSDEF Opposes VTA Sales Tax Measure B

The TRANSDEF Board has voted to formally oppose the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority’s (VTA’s) transportation sales tax measure. We have No Confidence in VTA. Check out the websites of our allies Sierra Club and BayRail Alliance!

Measure B would double VTA’s sales tax. This is intolerable, when the Measure fails in three distinct policy areas:
  • BART to San Jose and Santa Clara is a horribly wasteful and ineffective response to the commuting challenges of Santa Clara County residents.
  • The continued funding of highways is ultimately futile, as congestion will merely continue to get worse. See this study to learn how highway widening increases greenhouse gases over the long run.
  • While Silicon Valley desperately needs great transit, VTA continues to operate a hopelessly ineffective transit system. Its plans allocate little of the Measure A proceeds to an Santa Clara County transit network.
See the brilliant video, produced by the City of Cupertino, that shows how Silicon Valley could have great transit. Read More...