Highways, and Airports, and Rail…Oh my!
The physical infrastructure needed to move people, goods, information, energy, water and waste in an affordable, reliable, environmentally sustainable and secure way includes all modes of transportation:
- Highways, bridges, tunnels, mass transit
- Utilities, including dry utilities (electricity, communication, data, waste management/recycle) and wet utilities (water, waste water, storm water)
- Goods movement – seaports, airports, rail
L.A. County is a global economic leader due in large part to the foresight and leadership displayed in building the world’s most advanced physical infrastructure systems more than half a century ago.
We now have many opportunities to build on this legacy for the future growth of our region.
“The mode of transportation as we know it is slowly changing and Metro needs to remain relevant not only today, but in the future. With the advent of on-demand systems such as Uber and Lyft, Metro has to find ways of incorporating its transportation network into these systems. ”
Maintain physical infrastructure in good repair and ensure its resilience to disaster.
A. Conduct analysis to determine the adequacy of currently planned infrastructure repair, maintenance and improvements, as well as to assess the ability of infrastructure to withstand potential stresses such as earthquakes, climate change and terrorism.
B. Use technology to more effectively and affordably deliver public services, such as water distribution and electricity usage, and to better monitor, asset manage, and anticipate breakdowns and replace, where necessary, the county’s aging infrastructure, especially water infrastructure (now nearing or past the end of its lifecycle).
C. Develop a long-term capital plan for infrastructure repair, maintenance, and earthquake resilience upgrades.
D. Create a mechanism for regional agencies across jurisdictions to coordinate and overlapping infrastructure needs and respond regionally to natural or other disasters.
Account for regional economic trends in infrastructure development.
A. Analyze needs of L.A. County’s future economy as a factor when prioritizing infrastrucutre development projects.
B. Aggressively lobby for the region’s fair share of federal and state infrastructure-related dollars, such as cap-and-trade expenditure allocations.
C. Provide universal access to “best in world” high-speed Internet access.
D. Develop the systems to support new innovations in multimodal transportation, autonomous vehicles and clean fuel technologies.
Improve infrastructure finance, entitlement and construction processes.
A. Create a county-wide database of infrastructure needs and planned investments; and more intelligently integrate regional infrastructure investments, including new Join powers Authorities, so that different jurisdictions and agencies can work together where feasible to plan, leverage investment, fund, and maintain projects and systems that meet the benefits, goals and conditions of one another.
B. Institute permit reform at the state, regional and local levels and advocate for simultaneous local-state-federal environmental analysis.
C. Modernize the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) to preserve the dual intents of the law—environmental protection and public participation—while limiting abuses of CEQA that have hindered responsible improvements that benefit the economy and environment, and impose strict dealdlines on CEQA review to reduce uncertainty and lower costs.
D. Conduct an independent assessment as to whether the two-thirds supermajority vote requirement for local bonds needs reform.
Operationalize innovative financing, delivery and post-construction management models.
A. Expand design-build infrastructure development models, where the design and construction services are contracted to a single entity, and pilot more design/build/operate models, where a public entity solicits a single bid for the design, construction and operation of a project.
B. Create an enabling legal framework and incentive structure to increase private sector participation, performance-based contracting, and other creative infrastructure financing, delivery and LEAN development structures.
C. Engage non-traditional, non-bank financial intermediaries and private asset management firms for development capital, as well as the European union banks and EB-5 immigrant investor programs.
D. Launch a regional infrastructure bank and advocate for a California Qualified Infrastrucutre Bond Program (similar to the very successful Build America Bond Program) to help finance critical infrastrcuture projects by subsidizing interest payments paid to bondholders.