9/26/2008

OPEN THREAD

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

THIS JUST IN: Rick Perry will now start charging a TOLL for Galveston residents to use the I-45 causeway onto the island.

Anonymous said...

Times must be getting rough to go as far as to punish the victims on the hurricane in Galvaston. TXDOT must be short on funds, after all they can seem to find the missing 81 bullion dollars. It's there, just look at their inflated pay checks.

Anonymous said...

Actually that was just a crude joke. Although it certainly wouldn't surprise me if it was true. Prick Perry has a heart about as cold as ice. Could you imagine the outrage if residents had to pay a toll to go home to a disaster area? Would be about as bad as tolling I-10 and US290 out of Houston during a hurricane evacuation.

Anonymous said...

Just my 2 cents but please don't post jokes like that. I wouldn't want to mistakenly quote what you've posted as truth if I went to a public meeting and then have the general ignorant public have less faith in our cause because I'm incorrect. But by all means it wouldn't surprise me if Perry did that.

Anonymous said...

The taxpayer wasn't held up at gunpoint and the treasury wasn't looted by Bush and his Replublican band of thieves...today. But tomorrow and the days after remain dangerous.

The blessing in all this is there's a lot less money available out there to finance the selling off of our roads and other infrastructure to foreign interests.

Anonymous said...

FYI: Ben Wear (local transportation hack) article which was VERY short lived @ Statesman.com front page:

http://www.statesman.com/search/content/news/stories/local/09/29/0929wear.html

http://tinyurl.com/4kja22

Anonymous said...

TxDOT caught violating the law, forced to pull plug on 281 toll road
TxDOT asks feds to pull clearance due to damaging evidence of rigged study and subsequent cover-up
San Antonio, TX, October 1, 2008 – Today, the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) announced it is asking the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to withdraw its environmental clearance for the US 281 toll project in Bexar County. Plaintiffs in a lawsuit to halt the toll project and advance an overpass plan, Texans Uniting for Reform and Freedom (TURF) and Aquifer Guardians in Urban Areas (AGUA), believe TxDOT’s move is in response to an email they obtained from a TxDOT whistleblower showing a biologist at TxDOT hired her own husband to "fix" the environmental study for 281 in order to get federal clearance for tolling an existing freeway.

She did this at the direction of top management at TxDOT, like David Casteel, the former San Antonio District Engineer now promoted to a position as the right hand man to TxDOT Executive Director Amadeo Saenz in Austin. TURF recently uncovered even more damaging emails. In its recent motion to compel TxDOT to hand over other key documents, TxDOT was put on notice that TURF knew about this illegal behavior and were about to depose witnesses under oath about it. Rather than come clean, TxDOT is again trying to hide their wrongdoing blaming the halt on a “technicality” and procurement “irregularities.”

Porkus Maximus Tex: said...

TTC-69 “New Corridor” Alternative Not off the table!

9/29/08

Connie Fogle

Press Release
Trinity-Neches Texas Sub-Regional Planning Commission (TNT SRPC)
Copyright 2008

“Even though TXDOT has said the ‘New Corridor’ alternative will not be chosen for the Trans-Texas Corridor 69, we have proof that it is not off the table and could be chosen in the future,” announced Trinity-Neches Texas Sub-Regional Planning Commission (TNT) President, Bob Dockens.

TNT recently received a letter from Dennis Cooley, TxDOT’s District Engineer from Lufkin, stating that the new corridor alternative would still be a part of the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) when submitted for approval from the Federal Highway Administration (FHA).

Just a few months ago, TXDOT announced in a major publicity campaign that they would not be recommending the “new corridor” alternative, but would recommend upgrading U.S. 59 to Interstate status as their “preferred alternative” when submitting the FEIS.

“That was a masterful slight-of-hand by TXDOT,” commented Commission Associate, Connie Fogle. Although TxDOT’s announcement appeased lawmakers and some local officials, TNT officials found an FHA regulation that allows TXDOT to go back to the “new corridor” alternative after the study has been approved by the FHA.

Cooley’s letter to the Commission confirms that the new corridor is still a real threat to the local area stating; “the effort made to evaluate the new corridors will be captured in the body of the Tire One FEIS report as an option considered; however, TXDOT will be only recommending advancing the I69 project along existing highway facilities where practical (emphasis added).”

Cooley’s statement confirms that the new corridor alternative will still be a part of the final study. TNT found the regulation (23 CFR 771.127 (b)) that allows the agency to change their preferred alternative after a study has been approved as long as that alternative has been studied in the original document.

Should the Federal Highway Administration approve the FEIS with both the “existing facilities” and “new corridor” alternatives in the final report, TNT believes TXDOT will use this legal loophole to build a new TTC 69 rather than use existing highways. TNT also points out that the word “practical” in Cooley’s letter gives TXDOT total discretion as to whether they use existing facilities.

“We will have lost the opportunity to have meaningful input into the impacts this will have corridor on our local area and economy once the final FEIS is approved with both alternatives. That’s unacceptable,” commented Dockens.

Trinity-Neches Texas
Sub-Regional Planning Commission
500 W. Church. Livingston, TX 77351
Bob Dockens, President
936-577-0725

Anonymous said...

Above is a press release the TNT Commission (Trinity Neches Texas SRPC)
recently sent out. They requested a letter from the Lufkin District
Engineer confirming that the new corridor alternative for I-69 would not go
forward. What they received instead from the DE is confirmation that it
will go forward, and can later be selected as the preferred alternative.

Anonymous said...

Hey Sal, do you have a list of local PRO tollers we can try and vote out of office this November?

Anonymous said...

I-69 only benefits the companies that move their factories to Mexico, so who benefits? Not me.
Only the fat cats that just get fatter and do not care to employ any US labor force. Why would I support that? It's like shooting my self in the feel to make me feel better.

Anonymous said...

US 281 - The one that should loose their job over the environmental document is David Casteel. He predetermined the outcome of env doc the day he decommissioned the funds and told the staff to toll 281. He also gave the staff a very short time schedule to meet HIS letting schedule. His head should roll. The the other questionable district engineers and staff will have to clean up their acts for a while or worry about their crooked dealings.

Anonymous said...

Lou Dobbs: Wall Street Bailout Fraud - Acorn Under Investigation

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DJ2CBL19vB4

Anonymous said...

TIME FOR ACTION: Campo meeting Monday Oct 13 at Thompson Conference Center. SEND EMAIL:

mportant! CAMPO Board Meeting!

Mon, Oct. 13, 2008, 6:00 p

Room 2.102, Joe C. Thompson Center , University of Texas Campus

Dean Keeton (26th Street) and Red River Streets, Austin



Ask the CAMPO Board to vote NO on item # 7, & email them at: campo@campotexas.org



Say NO! - to false Market Valuation for Hwy 290 East; Say NO! - to using Hwy 183A as collateral for 290E, and Say NO! to tolls on Hwy. 290 East!



It's very important that you show up at the Monday CAMPO meeting to tell the CAMPO Board to vote NO on approving that Toll road 183A have it's Toll income be used as leverage and collateral for building the toll road on 290E. This is the only way they can do it, because the "market valuation for 290E came in as negative," in other words, it’s in the RED, so currently there is nothing to back up the bonds they want to sell without getting approval from CAMPO Board to either falsely re-evaluate Hwy 290E, or to use as collateral the tolls from Hwy 183A.



See CAMPO Agenda item # 7: http://www.campotexas.org/comm_tpb_agendas.php

mcblogger said...

SAL!

http://www.mcblogger.com/archives/2008/10/tolls_so_what_i.html

email me... mcblogger@mcblogger.com. I lost your address.

Anonymous said...

Austin Business Journal
Wednesday, June 18, 2008

"Austin offramps two of the worst bottlenecks in the country"

http://tinyurl.com/3rfnan

http://austin.bizjournals.com/austin/stories/2008/06/16/daily19.html

Anonymous said...

"Austin offramps two of the worst bottlenecks in the country"

This link works. Read the comments

http://www.bizjournals.com/austin/stories/2008/06/16/daily19.html?f=et51&ana=e_du

Anonymous said...

David Castillo is a power hungry magot who has landed in a position that can do great harm to the tax payers. He needs to be removed just as bad as Amadeo. Out in the real world these clowns would be out of business in a New York minute.

Anonymous said...

UPDATE: The three amigos at the Pharr Distirct are to be sentenced on November 24 in Federal Court in McAllen who pleaded guilty as to taking a bribe from an FBI agent.
It was a grand slam for the FBI and a red face for TXDOT management.

Anonymous said...

I came from Mcallen last week and all along 281 there were signs stating it was the future route for the 69. So I'm taking that as plans are already in the works?
NM