Updates from May, 2010 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • bibliosk8er 2:25 pm on May 2, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags:   

    More on Richardson, Texas Bond Election 

    Well, one of my previous posts (kind of a rant, actually) about the 2010 Richardson, Texas, bond election got some views.

    Here is a very good editorial in favor of the bonds – more calm and rational than mine.

     
    • Cautiously Optimistic 3:34 am on May 3, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      How about a calm and rational editorial Against the bonds? The facts are, 24% of Richardson residents are senior citizens, 8% are unemployed and another 8% are underemployed. That adds up to about 40% of residents in Richardson who would be adversely affected by another tax increase. A 10.4% hike in City taxes is more than a fat increase, and in troubled economic times. The fat, dumb and happy days are over for a while. We would be wise to hold off until the dust settles a bit. Don’t overlook the fact that those presumed “low labor and material prices” are going to evaporate over night when several municipalities get their accounts flush with cash from their similar bond elections. This is not a bargain. It is a trap that we can avoid. We would be much better off if we put the brakes on spending and give the public a tax break. Or, at least not raise their taxes.

    • bibliosk8 1:08 pm on May 3, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Biker – I deleted you comment, as I don’t want the names of any specific citizens being slagged here. I respect your right to your opinion, but sorry, can’t go that way.

      Cautiously – thank you for your opinion. I appreciate your participation.

    • bibliosk8 1:57 pm on May 3, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Cautiously – I would agree with you that the ‘”fat, dumb, happy days are over for a while” — in fact, I’d say they have been over for quite a while, and will probably not be returning.

      However, I draw a different conclusion. Richardson, Plano, and other older suburbs are, well, getting old. Richardson and Plano are already losing businesses and residents to places like Frisco, Allen, etc. — newer cities who often use economic development money we don’t have to draw business in. They also tend to have new, more modern amenities, which make them very attractive to new residents, new families, etc. We need new families moving in. We need to keep talented people moving in.

      I’m sure you are aware of this. Just explaining part of my case.

      In my view, these propositions are not extravagant. Certainly, spending the money maintain our infrastructure isn’t. Maintaining a certain level of excellence in our public amenities also isn’t extravagant.

      I was accused by another commenter (whose comment I spammed because it pissed me off) of using scare tactics when i said without these bonds, Richardson would end up like Garland.

      Perhaps I was being a bit over the top, but my point was this: when we stop doing the things it takes to keep our city a desireable place to live, we begin a downward spiral that even good economic times can’t turn around.

      As the city becomes less desireable, people don’t want to live here. When people don’t want to live here, businesses don’t want to locate here. As both of these factors kick into play, property values decrease, tax revenues decrease, and there is less money to maintain what we have, which further aggravates the problem of people and businesses not wanted to be here, etc, etc.

      At any rate, I’m sure we have both voted already. Whatever the outcome, best wishes for a healthy and vibrant Richardson.

  • bibliosk8er 4:45 pm on February 24, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cost of freeways, DFW Connector, DFW transporation   

    Highway projects in DFW — so depressing… 

    Saw these two stories today in the Fort Worth Star Telegram. Highways are really, really expensive.  I hear people complain sometimes that not everyone on the DART train buys a ticket — that there are cheaters. Compare that relatively small loss to the massive investment in freeways…it just doesn’t compare.

    The money involved in just these two projects totals to over three billion dollars. That would finance a lot of light rail and bike lanes and street cars.  I’m glad my friends who have to drive in these parts are perhaps looking at less misery, but there’s got to be a better way of doing things….

    http://www.star-telegram.com/2010/02/23/1992005/stretch-of-ne-loop-820-has-dallas.html

    http://www.star-telegram.com/2010/02/23/1990762/work-begins-on-dfw-connector.html

     
  • concreteguy 5:03 pm on December 9, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: auto industry, bailout,   

    Bike lanes and bailouts 

    First, I must admit I’m surprised to see gasoline under $2 a gallon. I never though I’d see that again. I’ve seen gas here in Dallas for less than $1.60 per gallon. Just a few months ago it was $4 a gallon. I have trouble believing that demand has decreased enough, or supply increased, or some combination of the two, to account for a 50% price reduction. I’m not normally a conspiracy guy, and I do pretty much subscribe to the notions of Peak Oil that are so prevalent, but I can’t help but think the oil industry was taking advantage of the last days of the Bush administration to squeeze a few last megaprofits out of us.

    During the campaign, Obama was talking about putting windfall profits taxes on the oil companies. Then he gets elected, and suddenly prices go down?! I think they saw the writing on the wall and lowered prices before Obama got all up in their faces.

    So it looks like the “happy motoring” (Kunstler’s term) program continues, at least for a while. We’re going to bail out, or at least give a lot of money, to the Big 3 auto companies to keep them on life support. Normally I would say to hell with them, but I don’t think we need to add all those jobs to the “jobs lost” column right now. Although Robert Reich notes that even though we are supposedly doing this to save jobs, they will probably cut massive numbers of jobs anyway.  At any rate, I’ll be surprised to see them make any real changes to car design or quality, which is fine. I advocate a slow death for the auto industry, or at least a slow down-scaling of the industry. We just don’t need that many new cars on the road every year.

    Infrastructure: Obama is proposing a massive public works program to rebuild infrastructure, invest in green technologies, etc. Good. I like this. Unfortunately a lot of this will go to building roads for fucking cars, instead of starting a massive redesign of our society. But whatever — its your great great great grandchildren’s money that will be paying for it. I’d just like to see some fraction of the money go to real bike path/lane/commuting projects and other good, modern, mass transit systems, so we can get off this petrochemical addiction sooner rather than later.

    While they’re at it, they can rebuild the passenger rail system too.

    Not sure where I’m going with this — just writing — so I’ll stop now.

    End of rant.

     
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