Republican front-runner for the U.S. Senate is hoping to win over the GRAIL switch by introducing the controversial idea of allowing motorists to use their own vehicles to dig a hole, with the idea that it will cut down on congestion and pollution.
“I want to get this on the table as a way to help make sure we get a real solution to the congestion problem that we’ve got here in the state of California,” State Senator Jim Beall told Politico.
Beall has not announced whether he would support the idea or not, but it has been on the agenda for months, including a July 21 event in Sacramento.
It is an idea Beall said he has supported in the past, but he believes it has to be a part of a broader strategy for California to avoid the worst effects of climate change, as the state is in the midst of a severe drought.
“If you think about the other states in the United States that are struggling with this, you really have to think about it from a traffic management standpoint, because there’s a lot of people out there who are not paying attention to traffic, or have no idea how to drive,” Beall, a Democrat, told Politico on Thursday.
“And I think the Grazing Lane could help get our transportation infrastructure to where it needs to be to get people out of cars.”
Beall said the idea could potentially be implemented in cities that have already embraced GRAIF, such as San Francisco and Sacramento.
But he said it should be more broadly implemented if it was to work, noting that California is already seeing significant reductions in congestion, pollution and congestion caused by the state’s reliance on fossil fuels.
California has about 2.5 million drivers.
The California Senate voted earlier this month to approve legislation allowing motorists and pedestrians to dig holes for a fee of $5, and the bill now moves to the state Assembly, where lawmakers are expected to take up the bill, and to the Governor.
In an interview with the Associated Press, Beall acknowledged the plan may not work out.
“It’s really going to take a while,” he said.
“We’re in the middle of a really severe drought, and we’ve had a really bad drought since 2000.”
He added that it was a good idea to keep the idea in the spotlight because it could eventually help move forward on other state-wide transportation initiatives, such a highway-building plan for the state.
State Senator Mark Leno, who is also vying for the Senate seat, told the AP the idea was not an obvious solution to congestion and the lack of road access for drivers.
“I don’t know how you would solve congestion without the GAC [Gulf Coast Autonomous Coordinating Center] and other transportation authorities,” Leno said.
“We need more roads, we need more bridges, we don’t need more GACs.”
Be all in, says Democrat to join GRAID switch: The Grazer.
Bealall, the Republican, has not ruled out a change to the way the state handles the GCA, though he noted that it has the full support of the California Highway Patrol.
“I’m certainly open to looking at a change,” Bealall said.
The GRAI bill, which Beall has introduced since January, has been endorsed by the California Association of Governments, and Beall says it has broad support in the legislature.
GRAIF has been proposed in other states and even on a local level.
Last month, San Diego city officials proposed allowing cars to drive up to 10 feet in a lane of traffic, but Beall pointed out that in the GWA, cars are allowed to drive down to 2 feet.
Beall and Leno have also called for more road-building and congestion-reduction efforts, saying the state needs more infrastructure to cope with a predicted surge in CO2 emissions.
The proposal has also sparked a firestorm of criticism from the Republican-controlled state Legislature, where a proposal to build a $1 billion bridge across the Pacific to allow vehicles to drive across the state border was shot down by the GOP.
The bill Beall and his Democratic challenger are trying to get on the ballot, SB 2186, was shot in the foot by state Sen. Kevin de Leon, a Republican who has criticized the proposal as “the wrong solution to a crisis that we are facing.”
Be all ready, he wrote in a letter sent to Beall on Friday.
“The GCA and its board have told me they would like to see the GBA vote on the bill.
This is a good time to act on that request.
I have also sent an email to the GGA saying that we must do more to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, including by doing the following: We need to create and build a network of more than 1,500 miles of