Some Central Valley Farmers Welcome High Speed Rail

Dec 13th, 2012 | Posted by

Tim Sheehan has a good article in the Fresno Bee on farmer attitudes toward high speed rail in Madera County. And while he includes the requisite quotes from farmers convinced that high speed rail will destroy their way of life, he also included this:

Juan Ureña, who owns 32 acres along the BNSF tracks at Road 27, east of Madera, said he’ll lose about 2 acres of land to the high-speed train line.

But far from despairing, he’s looking forward to the project, even though a map he pointed to shows the tracks passing not far from the house he built six years ago.

Instead, he’s excited about a planned Road 27 overpass over both the high-speed line and the BNSF tracks. “Once they put in that overpass, the freight trains won’t have to honk their horns,” he said. “That’s noisy, and it drives the dogs nuts.”

Unlike other landowners who vow to force the rail agency to go to court for their land, “I’m going to work with them,” Ureña said, “but I want to make sure I’m fairly compensated.”

Those are reasonable concerns on Ureña’s part. He and all other farmers, whether they support HSR or not, deserve to be fairly compensated. But it is good to see the supporters getting their space in the news reports. Many of them exist in the Central Valley, from the cities to the farms. And while the anti-HSR forces claim to represent everyone in the Valley, the truth is that they don’t. Opinions are much more diverse than the opponents will concede.

Other farmers have raised concerns that they are in limbo:

Antoni Ares, whose 3-acre parcel sits just west of where the rail line will skirt the western edge of Madera, not far from the existing BNSF Railway freight tracks, was getting frustrated trying to find his property listing as he sorted through a maze of maps laid out on tables.

He said he’s also been annoyed by a lack of communication from the rail agency.

“They called once last year to see if they could check the property and check the soil, but they never called back,” Ares said. “Same thing this year, they called once and never called back. I don’t know what to do.”

He’s bothered by the uncertainty of whether the agency will need any of his property for the right of way. “I would like to keep my property, but my wife is worried about how close it will be — right next to my window, maybe?”

That’s a reasonable point to make. Unfortunately, it’s not easy for immediate answers to be given. The specific route for the project in Madera County has only recently been finalized, so there wasn’t any certainty that his land would be needed. Nor was there certainty, at least not until July, that the state legislature would release the funds needed to begin construction. Until a route was finalized and funding approved, property acquisition was only in the realm of the theoretical. Which sucks for farmers like Ares, but it’s hard to see how any other outcome was possible, at least until recently.

The California High Speed Rail Authority’s outreach meetings are an effort to address those concerns and deepen those contacts, now that a route and funding are in place. Still, opponents will charge that it isn’t enough, just as they always do. And they’re looking for more opportunities to go to court to fight the project, with the next round of lawsuits likely to stem from disputes over eminent domain purchase prices.

It is good to see that the farmers who do support high speed rail are being publicly acknowledged. The concerns that some farmers have raised about the project are dramatically overstated, as this analysis showed. Perhaps as the property acquisition process and final design proceeds, more people will see that truth. Or so we can hope.

  1. joe
    Dec 13th, 2012 at 21:00

    Two nominees for best dramatic performance at a HSR meeting:
    The Farm Bureau or the former President, Jim Erickson.

    In a written statement, the Farm Bureau said that the rail line will displace “hundreds of farms.”
    “In Madera County alone, an estimated 2,000 migrant farm workers will lose their jobs,” the statement said. “The families of displaced small business owners and laid off workers will be harmed, and the entire regional economy will experience adverse ‘multiplier’ effects.”

    Jim Erickson, a former president of the Madera County Farm Bureau, farms almonds and other crops in southern Madera County. He brought two of his tractors out for the protest rally, even though none of his family’s properties are affected by the rail route.

    HSR will not cost 2,000 migrant worker jobs and these jobs are do not have a large multiplier effect on the economy.

    Facts about Farmworkers – National Center for Farmworker Health

    Wages and Benefits
    Migrant and seasonal farmworkers represent some of the most economically disadvantaged people in the U.S.13 According to the 2007-2009 NAWS survey results, 23% of farmworker families had total family income levels below the national poverty guidelines.

    The same NAWS survey found that 83% of farmworkers said they were paid by the hour, ….. One reason employers prefer this form of payment is that workers are motivated to work faster during such a short window of seasonal crop harvesting.

    In addition to low wages, farmworkers rarely have access to worker’s compensation, occupational rehabilitation, or disability compensation benefits.

    VBobier Reply:

    I thought farm workers got paid by how much they picked and aren’t subject to minimum wage laws?

    The Piece Rate: Payment Based on Productivity

    Most farm workers are paid based how many buckets or bags they pick of whatever crop they harvest—this is known as the “piece rate.” Payment in this format has some drawbacks.

    First of all, if workers are being paid by how much they pick, this acts as a disincentive to take breaks for water or shade, as taking breaks would cut into their productivity and thus cut into their pay.

    Additionally, it’s possible for a farm worker being paid by piece rate to make less than the minimum wage. For instance, the piece rate for orange juice in Florida is 85 cents per 90-pound box of oranges. Average productivity for a worker is 8 boxes per hour, which means that during an 8-hour workday, a worker will produce 64 boxes of oranges (or 5,760 pounds of oranges!). According to the 85 cents piece rate, a worker would receive only $6.80 an hour, which is significantly less than Florida’s $7.31 minimum wage (as of 2011).

    To compensate for this problem, as of 1966, federal law requires employers on large farms to pay minimum wage if a worker doesn’t earn it based on the piece rate. Unfortunately, there are loopholes to this system.

    For one, about one-third of the nation’s farm workers work on small farms, and these are not subject to federal law surrounding minimum wage. If a farm worker is hired through crew leaders or farm labor contractors, which approximately one half of all farm workers are, then their growers can avoid state and federal-level employment laws, including minimum wage. Another common issue amongst farm workers is wage theft, in which a portion of a worker’s wage is stolen by their employer or supervisor. Unfortunately, oversight on this is lax.

    At the end of the day, a law is only as strong as its enforcement. In the case of workers in our country’s fields, labor laws are poorly enforced at best, and at worst, farm workers are paid very little or no wages and work under modern slavery conditions.

    VBobier Reply:

    Oh and here‘s the Google search that I did, most don’t even make the equivalent of $10.00 an hour.

    joe Reply:

    The Farm Bureau has no shame.

    ““In Madera County alone, an estimated 2,000 migrant farm workers will lose their jobs,” the statement said. “The families of displaced small business owners and laid off workers will be harmed, and the entire regional economy will experience adverse ‘multiplier’ effects.””

    Migrant workers – seasonal workers – paid a poverty wage will lose jobs and cause ‘multiplier’ effects in the economy.

    That’s an excellent argument for the Farm Bureau to demand workers be paid them more. They’ll see multiplier effects from the wages.

    John Nachtigall Reply:

    well it is ok to cause them to loose their jobs since they are poor…

    And they call the republicans cold and callous.

    Peter Reply:

    I think the argument is that the Farm Bureau is inflating the numbers of jobs that will be lost, and is making up non-existent “adverse ‘multiplier’ effects”, not that it is good that poor people will lose their jobs.

    joe Reply:

    Winner John. Stand up and protect the hardest, lowest paying, seasonal jobs. You guys are tone deaf.

    Jobs that pay a crap wages create poverty, not the people. Switching minor sections of the land surface for a HSR ROW will create many jobs – not crop picking wages alas, but minimum wage and better. And Multiplier effects.

    D. P. Lubic Reply:

    You know, there used to be a business called Jefferson Orchards between the towns of Kearneysville, W.Va. and a little crossroads called Bardane. Much of that orchard was apparently destroyed by the 4-lane highway (W.Va. new Route 9) you see here. Apple and peach trees used to be where the highway is in the photo. What remains beyond and out of sight is now overgrown and abandoned.

    The railroad, by the way, has been there since about 1842–well before the Civil War and the formation of the State of West Virginia. Interesting comparison of width there. . .

    Neville Snark Reply:

    ‘lose’, not ‘loose’.

  2. Stephen Smith
    Dec 14th, 2012 at 02:34

    Instead, he’s excited about a planned Road 27 overpass over both the high-speed line and the BNSF tracks. “Once they put in that overpass, the freight trains won’t have to honk their horns,” he said. “That’s noisy, and it drives the dogs nuts.”

    Well, that’s one way to build a coalition…

    Brian Reply:

    Are you saying that we should have at-grade crossings on our California HSR system? That somehow running next to an existing RR and grade separating roads over both is a slick, underhanded way to “build a coalition” instead of the only reasonable thing to do?

    If not, what is the point of your comment?

    James M. in Irvine Reply:

    I think he was refering to the “dog” part of the comment for coalition building. Whatever it takes to gather support…


    Stephen Smith Reply:

    Having 220 mph at-grade crossings is, believe it or not, not the only way to avoid all of these Central Valley downtown grade separations. Having the full-speed express LA-SF route use a fully grade separated I-5 alignment and then having a not-quite-HSR service along existing-but-upgraded San Joaquins for LA-Fresno/Bakersfield/whatever-SF trips is one solution.

    Of course, that wouldn’t do anything for the motorists of Fresno (who seem to be eagerly anticipating the grade separation projects paid for by CHSRA), so I can see why Fresno politicians wouldn’t like that alternative.

    joe Reply:

    I-5 alignment. Avoiding downtown grade separations by avoiding the towns.

    Stephen Smith Reply:

    For express service. They’d still get local service on the same tracks (but upgraded) that the San Joaquins use now.

    Joey Reply:

    Uh huh. Because lightweight HSR sets will work great on the single track 79mph BNSF alignment…

    Stephen Smith Reply:

    Did you miss the “upgraded” part?

    Peter Reply:

    Oh, cool, so we’ll just pay to “upgrade” someone else’s railroad, while simultaneously investing in a parallel line. Sounds like at least one of them is a waste.

    By the way, how well is that working for Chicago-St. Louis, and how many trains will they have permission from UP to run on the new tracks paid for by the taxpayers?

    Paul Druce Reply:

    Dude, it’s the exact same thing that the French did with the TGV and legacy track. This way speedy train stays speedy without doing stupid shit like running a 200mph through the middle of a downtown. The non-speedy trains are going to slow down anyhow to stop, so what’s the problem with adding a couple extra minutes to them by having them run on upgraded legacy tracks for said downtown stations? It takes a Velaro E several km to reach speed anyhow.

    Jonathan Reply:

    Paul: no it *isn’t* the exact same thing that the French did. The SNCF continued to own both the LGVs _and_ any “upgraded” legacy lines into ciities. Well, until the EU forced them to split the tracks out to RFF, anyway. But neither one is a privately-owned freight railroad hostile to passenger trains.

    Joey Reply:

    Most of the French legacy lines in question were double tracked and electrified already too.

    Did I mention that they didn’t have the FRA?

    joe Reply:

    Express service == Bypassing the CV.

    There’s no support for bypassing the CV. There’s no money to build the alternative – no agreement. No vote or hearing.

    We have a choice between reality and doing something or blowing it up and getting nothing. Nothing.
    No ARRA reprogramming or Prop1A raid. Just nothing.

    No thanks.

    synonymouse Reply:

    How can you by-pass the San Joaquin Valley It’s right in the path, unlike Palmdale. A few spurs connecting to the I-5 racetrack et voila, express and Bako and Fresno.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    Fresno is 50 miles from I-5

    synonymouse Reply:

    A second spur off of I-5 is a possibility here. Very fast express service to LA, SF and Sac.

    None of this was ever examined because hsr has devolved into 3 regional neo-BART commute operations. Stone subsidy magnets.

    Andrew Reply:

    Start with a gilt-edged short I-5 route using a natural NW-SE pass thru SBenito Co, then add other segments (SF-Sac, LA-Orange-SD, LA-Orange-Vegas) as the system gathers momentum from new feeder lines and TOD. Early segments should make sense in themselves but also in terms of what the fully built-out network would look like. First red, then purple, then blue, then green:,-114.785156&spn=8.860851,14.150391
    Build each marginal segment when it’s ready to pay for itself.

    joe Reply:

    Spurs to Fresno – perfect. We’re building a rib cage out to the cities of CV after we connect SF to LA. Perfect – the rubes in the CV will believe that for sure.

    Andrew Reply:

    Better that than a crooked spine

    synonymouse Reply:

    It is not that far to Bako from the north base of Tejon and you would likely want a connection first thing to the UP during the construction process.

    Fresno and Bako are not going to be dealt out of the game; for instance not like the shoddy way Sac was treated by likes of LA and San Jose interests.

    synonymouse Reply:

    And add Oakland to Sac.

    Peter Reply:

    Seriously, the only people advocating bypassing the cities in the Central Valley via an I5 alignment are a few nobodies on this blog (and yes, I am a nobody, too, obviously), farmers who are claiming HSR will disrupt bee pollination and make their cows go dry, and the loonies at TRAC.

    I wonder how much more productive this blog would be if we discussed reasonable issues, you know, those that might actually be built some day in the real world, instead of I-5-Tejon-Base-Tunnel pipedreams that no one who actually has a say is ever going to consider. And yes, I participate in the rehashes of I-5 and Tejon, too, but this alternative reality I’m imagining is appealing.

    Jonathan Reply:

    What sort of reasonable issues? Level boarding and platform height? :)

    Peter Reply:

    Yes, although those two would appear to be no-brainers. Issues like how we can improve the system that is likely to be built, such as how to cut costs in San Jose without creating a political firestorm, how to cut costs at Millbrae, how to further cut costs in the Valley, how to get the IOS actually to LAUS, instead of likely useless Burbank, etc.

    Reedman Reply:

    Acela still has eleven at-grade crossings. Even though Amtrak has implement high-tech, full-all-lane-blocking, $1 million-per-crossing gates at these points, a car was hit by a NEC high speed train in 2005.

  3. joe
    Dec 14th, 2012 at 09:38

    HSR vs A380 in China.

    Longest High-Speed Railway to Compete With A380s in China

    Travelers in China will soon have the choice of traveling on the world’s longest high-speed train line or flying on an Airbus SAS A380 super-jumbo when going from Beijing to Guangzhou.

    A 2,298-kilometer (1,428 mile) line linking the nation’s capital and the southern city will open Dec. 26, … whisking passengers between the two in as few as eight hours. The trains will initially run at a speed of 300 kilometers per hour.

    … China Southern Airlines Co. (1055) A380s flying between the cities, an about three- hour flight.

    The planes have been used on the route for about a year …. The carrier has already lost money on domestic A380 services in the first half, according to Citigroup Inc.

    The services have lured passengers from flights that often suffer delays in China because of airspace restrictions and poor weather.

    A one-way China Southern flight from Beijing to Guangzhou leaving tomorrow costs at least 1,620 yuan ($259), according to the carrier’s website.

    Derek Reply:

    Here in San Diego, the airport is sometimes closed due to fog, especially this time of year. When that happens, it would be nice to be able to hop on a bullet train to the LA/Ontario airport and fly out from there, especially if I can check my bags all the way through to my flight’s destination before I board the train.

    Tom McNamara Reply:

    Given population centers, that would be a poor idea.

    I’m wondering why they don’t build a new airport on the Tustin Air Base for the purpose you describe.

    Derek Reply:

    LA/Ontario is only an hour by HSR from San Diego. Tustin is 2 hours by train.

    James M. in Irvine Reply:

    The Tustin airfield is being turned into a mall and housing. The El Toro air base is being turned into The Great Park. OC or local residents did not want another airport in their community, and voted it down. I think the El Toro would have been a great airport with an Amtrak station adjacent to it, but what can you do in a town ruled by nimbys?

    Jim M In Irvine

    Steven H Reply:

    I’m sure things have changed a lot since I last lived in Beijing in 2008, but the airport is well over an hour from the heart of the city (depending on traffic, it’s 2 hours by express bus, 1:30-45 by taxi, I think the new train is about an hour). Guangzhou is probably comparable. So that three hour flight is probably five or six hours long.

    As for the new HSR station, the older two major train stations are a little more central, but South Station is no more or less accessible than any other part of the city; the station on the south side of the Second Ring Road– pretty dang close compared to the airport’s addy out off the 6th Ring Road (the 1st Ring Road circles the Forbidden City). Guangzhou probably has a new HSR station in the “burbs”, like Shanghai, but the line will soon extend a few dozen kilometers more, to a new station in Kowloon, Hong Kong. Presumably most of the trains will also stop in China’s Bakersfields and Fresnos as well… Wuhan isn’t exactly a cow-town… so not everyone will be going all the way to Guangzhou.

    If I remember right, the Z-series trains that were running between Beijing and Shanghai prior to the new Jinghu high speed line were sleeper trains (they were all electric and had a run time of about 9 hours). I would be surprised if the Jingguang line won’t use car sets with sleeper berths, possibly those used on the Jinghu before it was sped up and they no longer needed sleepers for Beijing to Shanghai run.

    Unless the cost is ridiculous, I think I’d rather take an 8 hour trip on a soft sleeper than a 3-6 hour adventure on China Southern. Considering that the old sleepers took 36 hours (and they were filled with businessmen), I doubt the long trip time will turn off most business men and women.

  4. morris brown
    Dec 14th, 2012 at 12:18

    Dream on Robert.. There may be a few farmers or landowners seeking to cash in with money from the Authority. They represent very few of those whose land will be taken.

    Take a look at this:


    joe Reply:

    Are over 65, white, male, and angry? If you answered yes, then we have FOX News HSR Ointment.
    Guaranteed to remove HSR fears and stop the those unwanted HSR projects.

    Just rub it on the affected area daily and relax as you watch Fox News. In a maters of weeks (or months) HSR will being to fade and then disappear, leaving you with a pristine feeling.

    StevieB Reply:

    As the farmer in the Fox News video says, they are hoping for a miracle so that high speed rail does not happen. It will take an intervention of God to stop Central Valley construction.

    Alan Reply:

    So the farmers want to force CHSRA into court? Fine. Let them. It might delay things a few months, but ultimately, the state *will* get the land it needs. And it won’t be a huge windfall for the farmers. Fair market value is what the law provides. An eminent-domain lawsuit does not decide whether or not the state should get the property. All it does is establish the price paid.

    Alan Reply:

    No one ever suggested that farmers would be expected to sign sale contracts at this meeting, as the Faux LA story implies. But facts never bothered anyone reporting under the Faux banner…

    synonymouse Reply:

    The San Joaquin Valley farmers cannot prevail. Agriculture is no longer the power in California it was in times past.

    California now is just about what LA wants and demands.

    Tom McNamara Reply:

    No, California has been for the last fifty years about what LA wants and demands, but actually the tide is starting to shift the other way.

    joe Reply:

    FOX fails to tell the whole story. Jeff Morales mentioned in the newspaper article that the CAHSRA has not contacted farmers. CAHSRA *will* soon award the contract to hire a negotiating firm.
    That firm will then contact the impacted farmers. Morales expects things to settle down when this begins.

  5. joe
    Dec 14th, 2012 at 23:00

    Strong stuff

    Editorial: McCarthy’s bid to kill high-speed rail is baffling
    By the [Sacramento Bee] Editorial Board

    Read more here:

    McCarthy and Denham should stop Republicans in the nation’s capital from treating the San Joaquin Valley as “nowheresville” – though its eight counties are home to 4 million people, a population larger than half of the states in the nation.

    If McCarthy and Denham don’t want federal dollars to be a primary source of funds for building post-2017 phases, they ought to promote other sources – instead of denigrating a project that will help their region and put California at the forefront of the national transportation network of the future.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    I’ve noticed that when I correspond with Democratic legislators, if I’ve done it electronically, I get a nearly instantaneous response along the lines of “we care about your concerns and will be getting back to you as soon as possible” I then get a response. It may take weeks and it may be boilerplate but I get a response. When I correspond with Republicans it disappears into the ether.

    synonymouse Reply:

    This is just the voice of real estate developers, who dominate California politics. You can see it in the decline of California agriculture, which has been demoted to the role of placeholder for properties slated to be covered in tracts, shopping malls, freeways and gas stations in due course. You can see it in the obnoxious power plays of the Tejon Ranch Co., one of the biggest real estate holding and development companies in the State. You can see it in the way the CHSRA concept has been degraded into three gold-plated neo-BART commute opertions.

    Commute operations, of all passenger rail projects, enable sprawl the most. As in BART.

    Meantime the State, in particular, SoCal and the San Joaquin Valley, continue to decline economically. The jackals, vultures, and lawyers are fighting over the scraps:

    Eventually the for the moment flush big spenders blow beaucoup bucks on their own version of the Big Dig, for example SF with the Stubway and the State with the Moondoggle, will face the same budget crunch. Booms, be they cyber, real estate, or social networking, run their course and then the high rises start to empty out.

    Derek Reply:

    BART doesn’t enable sprawl. It enabled transit-oriented development, which isn’t sprawl.

    joe Reply:

    And he’s also wrong about CA Ag interests being on the decline. It is one of the most powerful in the state, if not the most powerful special interest in the State.

    Joey Reply:

    It’s not either or. BART stations have seen some TOD (some more than others, and most of it has been in the last decade or so), but by providing extensive park’n’ride facilities, BART also enables people to live decently far from the stations.

    synonymouse Reply:

    Sorry, BART was, has been, and is a major sprawl factor in the East Bay.

    The Farm Bureau cannot even get the CHSRA to look at I-5. It is just going thru the motions for its membership. Moondoggle Part Deux, aka the Peripheral Tunnel, reveals that Ag interests are just being used as a front, a patsy, for LA real estate developers who want to build another LA in and around Palmdale.

    Y’all have won your political victory, but what you’ve won is a smoking pile of mierda. Just admit it. Bask in your triumph of mediocrity and corruption.

    jimsf Reply:

    bart had nothing to do with bay area sprawl. the sprawl would have happenned without it just as the eact same type of suburban sprawl happened in every single california city from redding to san diego during the last 30 years

    synonymouse Reply:

    The outer-ring suburbs such as Antioch ballooned with sprawl as BART approached the area. An otherwise difficult and grueling commute by car on jammed highways is made acceptable by BART and encourages tract construction. Just one example – commute railways increase population by making more housing accessible to urban centers. The NYC subways a classic example at the turn of the century. Or the SP Peninsula commute line.

    San Jose to Gilroy, etc; Modesto to Bako, etc.; Palmdale to LA – three neo BART’s pandering to real estate developers. The Farm Bureau is so weak they cannot even get the attention of Jerry’s nodding house judges, who just dismiss any farmers’ legal challenges to the CHSRA totally unnecessary juggernaut thru almond groves with a cursory wave of the gavel.

    The CHSRA is all about real estate development and it is all about LA.

    jimsf Reply:

    coco co wouldhave sprawled east withoy bart. grueling commutes and a lack of rail service never stopped any county in the state from building tract homes on open space

    and the increasing population will happen with or without hsr. hsr will just provide anice travel option for those of us who choose to stay in an over populated state
    we can have 60 million people connected by fast trains or we can have 60 million people with cars as the only option

    stopping hsr will not stop unwanted growth. it will just lesson the misery index.
    i wish like you that cali had fewer people like 20 milllion max. but that wont happen

    synonymouse Reply:

    Economic distress is already scaling back population growth in California somewhat.

    “grueling commutes” reduce property values and the addition of convenient rail service to job centers conversely raises them. That’s one reason why real estate development interests have co-opted the CHSRA.

    Still it is regrettable the Farm Bureau in particular and farmers in general do not have enough clout to induce PB-CHSRA to fully study the I-5 alternatives, which are very competitive with 99. And much less disruptive and controversial for a starter line.

    It was with some relief that I see Dan Walters finally id’ing Harry Reid’s nefarious role in this fiasco:

    jimsf Reply:

    i 5 is pointless

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    and the addition of convenient rail service to job centers conversely raises them.

    I thought you and the PAMPA NIMBYs claimed that convenient rail access turned anyplace it touched into the slums of West Oakland.

    synonymouse Reply:

    On the contrary, putative PAMPA nimbys saved the SP commute line from BART conversion ca. 1962. They also favored electrification and the TBT in 1991, virtually identical with what will emerge as the Peninsula “blend”. Moonbeam does not have the moxie to even look at the Tejon Ranch redoubt let alone the moxie to eff with PAMPA. I wonder how MegaMeg’s wealth compares to that of the Chandlers; and she is one of hundreds. Some of the richest people in the country – forget about aerials. I think that was just PB bored engineers trying to poke the wasps’ nest.

    PAMPA wants and will endorse a good train – your f*****g Tejonies don’t want no train no way no how. Big difference but the cheerleaders can’t see it.

    The I-5 spine with 2 spurs would be extremely fast, serving both Bako and Fresno, and generate more revenue than 99 coupled with Tejon thru the golf course. As has been pointed out the preferred route has very acceptable curves and could probably allow sustained speeds comparable to those wanted at PAMPA(100-125mph)and the mountain section at Tejon is much shorter than at Tehachapi. No brainer.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    It’s not worth my time or effort to go back and find all the times you claimed that building through PAMPA would turn the underpasses into havens for homeless people turning PAMPA in to slums in short order. Ya can’t have it both ways.

    synonymouse Reply:

    There is not going to be any Embarcadero Freeway on rails as envisioned by PB-Bechtel. TGhose aerials are indeed magnets for any and every manner of lowlife.

    The cheerleaders got their backwoods 3rd rate detour and PAMPA is getting what it wanted in 1991 but was thwarted by the likes of BART, Heminger, MTC and Willie Brown, who diverted the monies to BART to SFO and elevated the boondoggle to iconic addiction.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    and the evil Nancy Pelosi mind rays are going to curdle the non dairy creamer in Palo Alto’s Starbucks…

  6. jimsf
    Dec 15th, 2012 at 15:21

    mccarthy is my rep. I sent him a short blunt nasty email. Hes a republican asswipe. He doesnt respond if you question him on things he doesn’t like so Im not being nice anymore since he’s not interested in representing those of us in his district. Just another republican shithead.

    VBobier Reply:

    I’ve got the same problem here, I’ve got one of those Repugnican dorks too, cause of top two I had a choice of 2 Repugnicans to vote for, some choice, can’t write in, the legislature needs to fix top to have a true open primary and not something where the top two candidates are of one party, it should be a Repug and a Democrat and a Write in for those support someone else, not a pair of identical twins. Oh and I didn’t vote for any Repugs in 2012, not if I knew who they were…

  7. Keith Saggers
    Dec 16th, 2012 at 17:05
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