Guest Commentary

By Jim Schmidt

Governor, his bureaucracy terminate state transit funding

This writer has attended a number of meetings on the governor's funding changes that will terminate state transit funding for the 2009/10 fiscal year. The Metropolitan Transit System will lose $14 million in state funding and the North County Transit District will also lose major amounts of state funding. Someone mentioned that the governor is now the "Transit Terminator." The state funding being ended is primarily from the sales tax on gasoline, which by state law is designated for transit.

Major changes needed for more housing affordabilty

Since this writer's two-part article in the Jan. 15 and 16 editions of The Daily Transcript I have attended many meetings of various organizations and also discussed the future housing situation with civic leaders. Everyone seems to understand that the future risk for builders, lenders, investors and others in building new housing in the San Diego region is that our area will almost certainly return to the major shortage of homes and low vacancy rates for apartments. This will again mean higher home prices and apartment rents after the sub-prime fiasco and the problems it has caused for the entire United States, are history with housing affordability then being much worse than ever before.

San Diego's future for affordable housing looks worse without changes

Editor's note: This is the second of a two-part series:

San Diego's future for affordable housing looks worse without changes

Editor's note: This is the first of a two-part series:

Navy project will revitalize a blighted downtown area

The Navy Broadway Complex project on Harbor Drive has been approved by the San Diego City Council (three times) and the Navy, but continues to face opposition.

Toll roads, toll bridges: Good news, bad news for 241

Toll roads are becoming necessary options for traffic relief in California with one major reason being the continual diversion of transportation funding for other uses by state government. The diversions and borrowing of designated funding for transportation of gas taxes and sales taxes on gasoline was started by Pat Brown and later done by Jerry Brown, Gray Davis and now our current governor, who has been diverting funding for transit.

Better transit won't stop traffic, but it's a start

The recent high escalation in gas prices has already created noticeable changes in traffic on major freeways and more transit usage on trolleys and buses. With the need for more oil supplies and the continual opposition by some back in Washington, D.C. to start drilling for more oil off the coasts of California, Texas, Alaska and Florida, we can expect the gas prices to go even higher as we do not have enough sources of oil.

Credibility of county grand jury reports on CCDC and Sandag is questioned

Editor's note: This is the second of a two-part series:

Credibility of grand jury reports on CCDC and SANDAG is questioned

Editor's note: This is the first of a two-part series.

Transportation funding: Good news, bad news

At the Feb. 20 meeting of the California Transportation Commission (CTC) held in San Diego, SANDAG and other government and civic leaders made presentations asking for $511 million in funding from the $2 billion in funds from Proposition 1B passed in November 2006 for border infrastructure.

Subprime, slow permit processing problems provide real history

The housing and real estate situation in areas like San Diego have been hurt badly by the subprime fiasco.

Approval of SR-241 toll road means traffic congestion relief

The 16.9-mile Foothill-South extension of the state Route 241 toll road will connect Orange County to Interstate 5 in San Diego County. The extension will provide relief from not only I-5 to the north, but will also reduce some I-15 traffic from Riverside County that uses SR-76 to travel to the Oceanside-Carlsbad area in order to avoid the current congestion on I-5 from the north. Point -- the extension means reduced traffic gridlock.

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Jim Schmidt

Schmidt is retired banker and attorney, active in civic affairs including transportation, housing and sports, and with two major Chambers of Commerce. He also served as Gov. Reagan's appointee to three ...

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