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Old 10-01-2008, 08:17 PM
 
Location: Jersey City
6,495 posts, read 16,196,421 times
Reputation: 5656

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Quote:
Originally Posted by sav858 View Post
exactly, LA gets screwed. $210 million vs $ 1.5 BILLION.
Sav,

That's apples-oranges. The $210M I mentioned was an unrelated "gift" from NY, not the Fed appropriation for L.A. MTA. It was a kind of tongue-in-cheek comment, trying to make you feel better. It wasn't a worthwhile comparison for me to make, sorry.

As I understand it (I've been out of the loop for awhile), the story in DC-area news sources today was about creating a dedicated funding source for WMATA, which all of the biggest transit agencies in the U.S. (except for WMATA) already have. Those sources tend to be state and local sources (a share of sales or fuel tax revenue, etc.). WMATA has the unfortunate pleasure of serving two states and the Federal district, all of which have fought to make sure their own jurisdiction isn't on the hook for supporting the operation on their own. And all of which have never really worked well together at doing anything.

Because the Federal government is so reliant on Metro (half its ridership), Congress (which has "supreme authority" over the District) decided it was in the Fed govt's interest to keep WMATA from becoming more dysfunctional than it already is, and offered the $1.5B as an incentive/reward to get all of the jurisdictions to come up with a dedicated funding mechanism for the operator. The District, Maryland and Virginia must match the Fed. contribution. I believe (and please, if someone knows better, let me know) that dedicated funding for WMATA was appropriated in SAFETEA-LU already, but that details were to be determined in the app. year? Not sure.


L.A. did OK for itself in SAFETEA-LU (the current TEA bill), certainly much better during the TEA-21 years (98-04). Los Angeles County, alone, was made eligible for over $5 billion in earmarks and formula funding FY05-FY09, for all kinds of transportation projects, and may have received more for special projects appropriated since.

I agree that none of our metropolitan regions receive nearly the support they need from all levels of government, especially Federal. Our TEA bills don't go far enough! I think we have a big problem with where our Federal transportation priorities are, and how we share the wealth within the country. For example, we need to change the way we share burdens and rewards between donor states and recipient states. No surprise now that bridges to nowhere are in the news, but Alaska is by far the biggest recipient under SAFETEA-LU, getting back nearly $4 for every $1 collected in Fed fuel tax there.

Ok, I'm rambling. Time for bed!
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Old 10-02-2008, 02:29 PM
 
Location: Scarsdale, NY
2,775 posts, read 10,731,138 times
Reputation: 794
Oh, and I forgot, LA can do everything by itself! They don't need help from the well-off DC and NYC politicians! They don't need help from Wall Street because they come up with their own money and funding! They don't need Houston's oil to run their tractors to dig subway tunnels, they don't need it to run subways, they don't need us! ..... So I'm told....

Last edited by Futcha; 10-02-2008 at 02:43 PM..
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Old 10-03-2008, 11:46 AM
 
Location: West Cobb County, GA (Atlanta metro)
9,188 posts, read 30,270,183 times
Reputation: 5131
Hey at least some transit agencies are getting something.

Atlanta's MARTA system gets next to nothing Federally, and the state of Georgia provides zero money for it. The rest simply comes from fares, which is why it usually operates at a loss.
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Old 10-03-2008, 02:40 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
7,732 posts, read 12,176,933 times
Reputation: 2774
Quote:
Originally Posted by FutureCop View Post
I doubt that. And the weather has a lot to do with it. We're discussing funding. From Buffalo to Cleveland to Detroit, there's almost zero funding. Not even zero, they're in the negatives. They can't afford to fix the potholes on their busiest roads let alone make subway extensions. Buffalo has one subway line, from North Buffalo to Downtown. It's old and it's not something you'd dare step foot in after dark. Same with Detroit's and Cleveland's. You want a real lack of support and funding, take the highway up from NYC and into Buffalo. Talk about negligence. Buffalo can't get a thing from even the state and local government let alone federal.

Nice try - but Detroit doesn't have a subway system. And I seriously doubt you have ever been to Cleveland.
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Old 10-03-2008, 02:46 PM
 
Location: West LA
2,318 posts, read 7,019,101 times
Reputation: 1097
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnatl View Post
Nice try - but Detroit doesn't have a subway system. And I seriously doubt you have ever been to Cleveland.
You underestimate FutureCop. If he says Detroit has a subway... it has a subway. You just haven't looked hard enough.
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Old 10-03-2008, 02:48 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
7,732 posts, read 12,176,933 times
Reputation: 2774
LOL! I'm starting to gather that.
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Old 10-03-2008, 02:54 PM
 
Location: Scarsdale, NY
2,775 posts, read 10,731,138 times
Reputation: 794
Quote:
Originally Posted by LASam View Post
You underestimate FutureCop. If he says Detroit has a subway... it has a subway. You just haven't looked hard enough.
Correct... Ever heard of the People Mover? It's basically a subway system.

I've been to Cleveland. I went to Jacobs Field after a trip to Buffalo.
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Old 10-03-2008, 03:01 PM
 
Location: SF Bay Area
15,470 posts, read 25,483,909 times
Reputation: 8936
Quote:
Originally Posted by FutureCop View Post
Correct... Ever heard of the People Mover? It's basically a subway system.

I've been to Cleveland. I went to Jacobs Field after a trip to Buffalo.
If you think a "People Mover" is equivalent to a subway system then you don't know much about transportation. It's basically an automated shuttle, it does not bring people downtown from other parts of the city or suburbs but instead moves them around while they are in downtown. Miami has a people mover too but they actually have a heavy rail system it connects to. Heavy rail is pretty much what a subway system is, not automated people movers.

And you can try to argue against this, which I'm sure you will, but recognize that I am a transportation planner and you don't have a high school diploma before you think about a response.
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