rusthebuss

Virginia Coffee House

Recommended Posts


Wilder is fixing decades of screwups. In the past, the mayor was barely more than ceremonial, thus I have to disagree that all of Richmond's problems are from former 'mayor' Tim Kaine.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wilder is fixing decades of screwups. In the past, the mayor was barely more than ceremonial, thus I have to disagree that all of Richmond's problems are from former 'mayor' Tim Kaine.

Amen. Prior to Wilder's election, Richmond's Mayor was simply a member of City Council, elected by his Council peers to wear the title of Mayor. In reality, the mayor had little power above and beyond any other member of council. Kaine's time on council coincided with several mediocre (at best) to outright corrupt Council members and an ineffectual City Manager who did little to stop the back-room, shady dealings presided over by a handful of "elite" Richmonders, which in the end benefitted mostly their own pockets.

Lots of people are to blame for Richmond's woes. Kaine's share of that blame is quite little in comparison, despite what the latest Virginia GOP Talking Points might suggest.

Edited by BGW

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm pretty optimistic about Kaine's turn at the helm. I disagree with the poster in the other thread who said Kaine "supports 3rd trimester abortions." On the issue of abortion in general, Kaine is reported to be morally opposed to it but that he will follow the law. The same is said of his position on capital punishment. These opinions were printed in most if not all of the major news sources during the campaign and I have no reason to believe differently.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lets talk politics!

<_< Ok Rus, as long as we can keep it civil i'll let this one slide (I must say that was pretty slick :lol:). My preference was not in the Virginia forum at all but after checking around Charlotte has a Coffee house too so I guess we can do this. My only concern is things don't get out of hand. Have at it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with Vdogg on this one, let's keep it civil with educated thoughts and not just hearsay or unsubstantiated opinions. Polititcs do drive our region's/state's growth and I do believe that it can and should be discussed. What do you think of Kaine's stance on improving our road system? I think he's being a bit idealistic on the matter in general. There's only one way to improve our roads...that's through taxes and more tolls, which we've already voted down. So the other stance would be through major reforms to how the state distributes the $ and how VDOT spends it. This will only provoke rural areas that greatly benefit from the current system of "near equal spending" and VDOT will not want major cuts and restrictive policies from the exectutive branch or the general assembly. Therefore, we'll have a case of a lot of talk and zero results. This is my view of what will occur, I wish our part-time politicians had the strength to overhaul the entire system of building roads, but I fear that it would be too earth shaking of a position for any of them to take. I hope that I'm wrong.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

<_< Ok Rus, as long as we can keep it civil i'll let this one slide (I must say that was pretty slick :lol:). My preference was not in the Virginia forum at all but after checking around Charlotte has a Coffee house too so I guess we can do this. My only concern is things don't get out of hand. Have at it.

You don't think that I can be civil? :P:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Richmond doesn't have the types of automobile transportation issues that HR has, and I wish HR didn't have them either. That said, transportation spending for highways and road improvements currently isn't the highest transportation priority to the Richmond region. IMO, the priority is better regional public transportation as well as rail improvements and initiatives. Basically, planning for the future so that we don't end up with a gridlocked roadway network.

Bringing back the streetcar should be #1 for the city and making it more than a tourist attraction. (well, repaving the streets would be nice too :) ). In essence, we need to create a viable and sustainable streetcar network (small at first, but capable of expanding) that can link important areas of the downtown area.

High speed passenger rail improvements SHOULD be made between Richmond and DC, as well as Richmond and HR. High speed rail from Richmond's Main Sreet Station to DC could be a boon for Richmond. People could live downtown, hop on the streetcar or bus to MSS, and enjoy a stressfree journey to the workplace in DC.

Edited by wrldcoupe4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wish Richmond would put the money down here to help us from really getting bogged down. It ticks me off that they will try to prevent up there but they leave us here to back up. Coupe this is why you have to understand why people get upset about this. Richmond is getting a disaportioned amount of the state budget. We are begging for help but its begging to a brick wall. This is why people don't want that extra tax cause it will not stay down here but dwindle away up in Richmond to your roads and such.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wish Richmond would put the money down here to help us from really getting bogged down. It ticks me off that they will try to prevent up there but they leave us here to back up. Coupe this is why you have to understand why people get upset about this. Richmond is getting a disaportioned amount of the state budget. We are begging for help but its begging to a brick wall. This is why people don't want that extra tax cause it will not stay down here but dwindle away up in Richmond to your roads and such.

Even if Richmond threw almost every penny in the transportation budget at us, we'd still need tolls and taxes. Our problems are far too great and I may take flack for saying this but I think we are putting far too much emphasis on our politicians fixing the problem for us. When citizens consistently vote down every possible money making maneuver they come up with to fund our transportation needs, at the end of the day we only have ourselves to blame. I know there is a lack of trust but we are seriously starting to run out of options here. Everybody needs to just suck it up and realize that we're gonna have to experience a little pain in the future to do what is necessary to keep this region vibrant.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm blaming Richmond for sitting back and watching us and NOVA to start backing up with traffic. This has been going on for decades yet they have not even tried to prevent this and now they are working on preventing it in Richmond. Why didn't this happen for us and NOVA? Now its our faults but Richmond should work on proving to us that they can be trusted and setting it up where they can not touch it but it goes 100% to those projects and not other parts of the state. But they won't do that cause they will rape those tolls and use it for other things and keeping the tolls way after the roads were suppose to be paid off.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Richmond's city taxpayer's don't owe a dime to HR. Maybe you're talking about the STATE government. If that's the case, I agree that every part of the state should get back what it puts in (though this would become unfair to largely rural areas).

The Richmond region's regional entities hope to prevent the problems experienced in NOVA and HR. I couldn't tell you what VDOT or the state government think.

The Richmond Region was told by VDOT that rt 288 would be the last toll-free highway in the region. Everything else will require tolls that pay for the entire cost (or near close) of construction and maintenance. We already have the Pocahontas Pkwy, Powhite pkwy, and downtown expressway, all of which are tollways. Pocahontas is owned by a private company, powhite and the downtown expressway/I-195 are controlled by the RMA and no state funds are used for those roads.

The sooner we lessen our dependence on the automobile, the better.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A good friend of mine lives in the Richmond region and anyone who spends a decent amount of time traveling that region will encounter toll roads. I hope that HR or Nova never have to experience that fact of life. Tolls are a pain and most or all of the $ goes to a private firm that uses the highway as an investment. To finance our roads we as a state should raise the sales tax another 1/2 of a percentage to 5.5% and make it's use mandatory for road construction/repair in the region that it was collected. They could divide the state into a few areas like NOVA, HR, Richmond, Roanoke, etc and that money stays put for their road projects. Larger metro's will generate more revenue, but they also need the roads more. Anyone got other plans like gas tax hikes etc, I'm curious to hear all solutions floating around out there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A good friend of mine lives in the Richmond region and anyone who spends a decent amount of time traveling that region will encounter toll roads. I hope that HR or Nova never have to experience that fact of life. Tolls are a pain and most or all of the $ goes to a private firm that uses the highway as an investment. To finance our roads we as a state should raise the sales tax another 1/2 of a percentage to 5.5% and make it's use mandatory for road construction/repair in the region that it was collected. They could divide the state into a few areas like NOVA, HR, Richmond, Roanoke, etc and that money stays put for their road projects. Larger metro's will generate more revenue, but they also need the roads more. Anyone got other plans like gas tax hikes etc, I'm curious to hear all solutions floating around out there.

Well there really is no solution out there thats not going to tick someone off. I see tolls causing more traffic back ups. Can you imagine the back up on the HRBT waiting to pay a toll???? Why should a tunnel built in the sixties have a toll? I don't think they should put a toll there unless they plan on dropping a couple more sleeves in there. I don't know but I just worry that the money will not stay here and just dwindle away to unaccountable places. If they can show where every cent is going............then go ahead with the gas tax or tolls. But if they can't guarantee it I WILL NOT SUPPORT IT. I fear they will not be able to guarantee it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

toll any new roads... Smart Tag makes delays minimal, even non-existent. Anyone foolish enough not to have smart tag deserves to wait. That way, only the users of the toll road pay for the toll road. Lots of people will pay for the convenience.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

toll any new roads... Smart Tag makes delays minimal, even non-existent. Anyone foolish enough not to have smart tag deserves to wait. That way, only the users of the toll road pay for the toll road. Lots of people will pay for the convenience.

People don't mind paying the tolls...AS LONG AS IT IS GOING TOWARDS THE ROADS THAT ITS FOR. People don't trust the managing of the money of the tolls

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm glad you're the voice for the people. In Richmond, many of the tolls are controlled by the RMA: Richmond Metropolitan Authority. Neither VDOT or the state have any hand in the operation of those roads or the toll collection. The money collected exclusively pays for maitenance and any upgrades to the toll road.

If it was a local entity, I don't think people would distrust it as much as they might distrust VDOT.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tolling the existing harbor crossings is justified, IMO. The toll revenue will help finance the construction of the Third Crossing, which will benefit ALL trans-harbor travelers. Indeed it's being built to alleviate congestion on other crossings. If you use the HRBT the 3rd crossing will benefit you and therefore you should be responsible for sharing a portion (toll) of the cost. Furthermore, if the 3rd crossing has a $7 toll and HRBT has none, when will the 3rd be attractive to use? Only when the HRBT is so gridlocked that the fare becomes MORE of a cost savings than time spent in traffic. Is/was anyone an economics major?

In terms of delays, toll plazas are constructed much differently now than they were in the 1960s. Standard EZ-Pass helps, but EZ-Pass Express is the best thing since sliced bread! While cash users slow down to throw change or make a transaction, Express allows EZ-Pass users sail through at full speed in a seperate set of EZ-Pass Express lanes. (regular EZ-Pass requires you to slow down to 15 mph). The long queues for toll payment are diminished to nearly nothing!

Here's a pic of an EZ-Pass Express configuration...

gov6.jpg

I think tolls and other auto-related charges (DMV fees, gas tax, increased violation fines, etc) pass the cost burden to those who will use the system. Sales tax is regressive, meaning those who earn the least pay a higher proportion of their income than wealthier people. I don't see why someone working minimum wage who takes the bus to work should be made to subsidize highway construction at a higher proportion than those who will actually use the highways.

BTW how many states charge a sales tax on non-prepared food? I think VA is one of only 10 or 15.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

SmartTag is Virginia's equivalent of EZPass...The toll collection on the new Pocahontas Pkwy in Richmond is a good example....

from Roads to the future:

Route_895_Toll_WB_0502.jpg

doesn't look like any delays for the person smart enough to get smart tag/EZ pass.

btw... EZ Pass is also compatible with Virginia's SmartTag system.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have tolls around here too! The coleman bridge has one, CBBT has the highest in the nation, and the 168 bypass has one. I also don't see any real traffic on that road. Put in dumb @sses that are crossing from the left lane all the way to the right to pay with cash with it bumper to bumper and then see how much that toll slows it down.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

168 doesn't really seem necessary for locals. It seems like it was pretty much built because of all the traffic heading to the outer banks.

We all know you have tolls down there. The point was that:

A. there are ways to ensure local toll money stays local

B. Advances in toll collection make any delays minimal for those that aren't fools.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have tolls around here too! The coleman bridge has one, CBBT has the highest in the nation, and the 168 bypass has one. I also don't see any real traffic on that road. Put in dumb @sses that are crossing from the left lane all the way to the right to pay with cash with it bumper to bumper and then see how much that toll slows it down.

That's why there's signage in advance of the toll plaza informing drivers of the toll configuration. Most will oblige, and those who go through the express lanes without an EZ-Pass (Smart Tag or whatever) will receive a ticket in the mail.

It works very well in NJ, DE, MD, and Richmond. If you think there are too many "dumb @sses" in HR to make it work there, that's sad.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's why there's signage in advance of the toll plaza informing drivers of the toll configuration. Most will oblige, and those who go through the express lanes without an EZ-Pass (Smart Tag or whatever) will receive a ticket in the mail.

It works very well in NJ, DE, MD, and Richmond. If you think there are too many "dumb @sses" in HR to make it work there, that's sad.

Well its the dumb @sses from other areas is the problem that aren't paying attention to the signs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Poll: Warner would easily beat Allen

excerpt

Democrat Mark R. Warner would clobber Republican U.S. Sen. George Allen in a presidential race in Virginia if an election were held today, a poll by the University of Virginia's Center for Politics shows.

A matchup of the two Virginians, each of whom appears to be angling for his party's presidential nomination, shows Warner leading Allen 49 percent to 32 percent.

Warner leads among every demographic group except Republicans.

The poll of 1,181 randomly selected Virginians was conducted during the three weeks after the Nov. 8 gubernatorial election and has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.85 percentage points.

It would be really cool to see a Virginia showdown for the white house in 08!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's why there's signage in advance of the toll plaza informing drivers of the toll configuration. Most will oblige, and those who go through the express lanes without an EZ-Pass (Smart Tag or whatever) will receive a ticket in the mail.

It works very well in NJ, DE, MD, and Richmond. If you think there are too many "dumb @sses" in HR to make it work there, that's sad.

Most of the time, when a driver goes through a EZ Pass without one they will have to pay a $25 fine. Same goes true for Delaware Memorial Bridge. If a person is caught breaking the law on paying a $3 toll, then that person receives a $25 ticket. That's $22 more.

In Delaware, they have a Delaware Turnpike (Delaware Route 1) with tolls and EZ Pass. The turnpike was constructed in about 13-14 years beginning in 1990 to provide motorists with a smoother route to Ocean City, Md and Delaware beaches. Traffic on US 13 has disappeared since the turnpike was constructed. But there are still some drivers who are bending the law on EZ Pass, yes. Most of the time when my mom has to go to NJ from Virginia Beach for doctors' appointments with my brothers, she uses a EZ Pass. Now my brother is in college, the # of visits go down, so my family doesn't use EZ Pass. But EZ Pass is the best thing, yes. It allows traffic to go smoothly.

But in Hampton Roads, they used to have a toll on the old Route 44 (now I-264 in Virginia Beach). The city used the tolls from the old Route 44 to pay for maintenance on that road, now it's left up to state and federal governments. I read there that people are planning on using CBBT as a regional government so they won't have to charge $12 for a toll. I think $10 is better than $12. I don't think CBBT will change hands in Governor Kaine's plan.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.