Friday, November 03, 2006

assesment of players

The following is an assessment of players involved in transportation funding & reform in SW PA:
  • Gov. Ed Rendell; urgency: medium; strength: strong; comments: has indicated that funding for transportation & infrastructure improvements are a priority for 2007.

  • Rural PA Legislators; urgency: low; strength: strong; comments: regard transit as a Pittsburgh/Philly problem, more concerned with roadways

  • Suburban PA Legislators; urgency: medium; strength: medium

  • Urban PA Legislators; urgency:high; strength:weak

  • County Exec. Dan Onorato; urgency: high; strength:medium; comments: transportation crisis will arrest the economic engine of the region

  • Transportation Action Team; urgency: low; strength: weak; comments: only mandated to devise strategies to see Onorato's transportation plan to fruition

  • Transit-Users; urgency: high; strength: weak; comments: facing higher fares & service cuts if no action is taken from PA legislature. Users don't wield political clout.

  • Transit Non-Users; urgency: medium; strength; strong; comments: aware that a public transit crisis may affect their commute

  • Trucking Companies; urgency: high; strength: medium; comments: bridge restrictions affect their routing. Implemtation of Just-In-Time travel info would benefit industry greatly.

  • Rail Carriers; urgency: low; strength: medium; comments: rail infrastructure is in good condition & carriers are currently profitable.

  • Barge Carriers; urgency: high; strength: medium; comments: locks & dams are in very poor shape

  • SPC; urgency:medium; strength: medium; comments: only mandated to dole out Federal dollars

  • PA Turnpike Commission; urgency: low; strength: strong; comments: facing possible privatization to raise funds for transportation crisis. This is the only profitable component of our statewide transportation system.

  • PennDOT; urgency: medium; strength: strong; comments: they know they have a problem with bridges. They just want input on how to generate the funds necessary to pay for repairs & upgrades.

  • Construction Contractors; urgency: low; strength; strong; comments: intense demand for construction contractors has driven up the price of many projects

  • Port Authority Transit; urgency: high; strength: weak; comments: fully aware that their cost of service is too high, but are constrained in how they can bring cost down

  • SEPTA; urgency: high; strenth: medium; comments: also facing a fiscal crisis, but high ridership gives this agency bargaining leverage with Harrisburg

  • Transit Unions; urgency: high; strength: medium; comments: membership will shrink if services are cut. They still wield good bargaining power with 1. the allowance of voting privileges extended to retired workers 2. their power to strike 3. PAT's inability to competively contract out services

  • Regional Public Transit Authorities; urgency: medium; strength: weak; comments: services are run relatively efficiently outside of Allegheny County. These authorities view themselves as being in competition with PAT & SEPTA for funding.

  • Downtown Business Community; urgency: medium; strength: strong; comments: 40-50% of Downtown workers use public transit to commute to the home of several multinational corporations

  • Oakland's Institutional Community; urgency: medium; strength: strong; comments: 25% of commuters use public transportation to get to work & school. Community would like to be better connected to developments along Second Ave.

  • Faith Based Community (PIIN) ; urgency: medium; strength: medium; comments: views transportation crisis as a social-justice issue. Actively works to deliver votes to legislators who come through.

  • Save Our Transit; urgency: high; strength: weak; comments: grassroots group composed of transit-dependents has pushed for an uncapping of funds allocated from the PA sales tax to be dedicated to mass transit

  • Allegheny Transit Council; urgency: medium; strength: weak;

  • Manufacturers; urgency: high; strength: strong; comments: desparately seeking MFX to move goods in & out of region with good rail & waterway access. Weight restrictions on bridges compounds problems of manufacturers.

  • Federal Govt.; urgency: low; strength: strong; comments: transportation funds have been cut to divert resources to "War on Terror". Population growth in the Sunbelt has diverted funds from Northeast & Midwest to the South & West.

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