Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Inside Tim Kaine's Brain

Another clue on where Tim Kaine is heading with his transportation policy is his choice of executive appointments. In addition to the re-appointment of Pierce Homer to the high-profile position of Secretary of Transportation, the Gov.-elect has selected two deputy secretaries of transportation.

Ralph Davis was appointed Deputy Transportation Secretary in 2002 to develop a long-term multimodal transportation plan, according to a Northern Virginia Technology Alliance newsletter alert. He was instrumental in producing the VTRANS 2025 multi-modal study. Davis represents "continuity" with the Warner administration, or "Business As Usual," depending upon your perspective.

Perhaps a more telling barometer of Kaine's sentiments is the appointment of E. Scott Kasprowicz of Middleburg Virginia, a director of a rideshare-promoting company and member of the Piedmont Environmental Council Board of Directors and Executive Committee.

The NVTA's reaction to Kasprowicz: "Given the trust Governor-elect Kaine is prepared to place in him, one would think that Mr. Kasprowicz does not subscribe to the PEC’s transportation program and tactics. However, his views on these matters and others should be clarified as part of his confirmation process."

A friend of the Piedmont Environmental Council in the Transporation Secretariat? That would be interesting. Don't be surprised if Kasprowicz emerges as one of Kaine's more controversial appointments.


At 4:35 PM, Blogger Toomanytaxes said...

Re E. Scott Kasprowicz - Isn't this just a case of Tim Kaine dancing with those who brought him to the dance? While Kaine may still have won the election (or may not have won it), it is very clear that his "we need to stop building where transportation facilities are inadequate" message sold big time in NoVA and, probably, in other areas of the state. That issue clearly propelled Kaine into the Governor's Mansion more than any other issue.

As I recall, Senator Russ Potts was taking campaign positions pretty close those of NVTA. Potts did not do too well as I recall.

Given the strong rejection of the sales tax referenda, the election of Tim Kaine and the non-election of Russ Potts, there's a pretty good argument that a large number of Virginia voters have rejected NVTA's views of the world. I'm not sure that the voters are necessarily buying into PEC's world view, but Kaine would probably be safer heading in PEC's direction than in NVTA's.

At 5:14 PM, Blogger Ray Hyde said...

Maybe you are right, nobody wants more building, and not just where transportation facilites are inadequate.

There is a fascinating post over at


"Poll on the Politics of Land Use & Development "

According to the poll:

“Rather than seeing growth and development as the time-honored stimulus to local and regional economies, the 21st-century issue is about who controls growth and development,” said Patrick Fox, president of The Saint Consulting Group. “Our survey shows that the American public is far more sophisticated about planning and zoning than we thought,” Fox reported. “The most staggering number to me is that one in five families has actively opposed a project.”

According to Fox, “The question that developers will need to address in 2006 is: Where are businesses to locate and build the structures for future jobs, if 83% of citizens like their neighborhoods exactly as they are?”

At 10:59 PM, Blogger Toomanytaxes said...

Fascinating, but not surprising, poll. Of additional interest is the finding that suggests 93% of voters would consider a candidate's position on development issues in deciding how to vote.

I suspect that some of these voters are in businesses that are highly dependent directly or indirectly on development, but the majority probably are not.

The political party that understands this will take an advantage in some elections. Democrats could tighten Virginia's land use laws in the name of environmental issues, while the GOP could take similar action for fiscal and tax reasons.

A couple of things will become interesting. One will be which elected officials pretend that it's business as usual and who presume that they can finesse their way through the 2007 elections. The other issue will be whether the development industry decides that it would be better to work towards some reasonable controls and restrictions now or whether it just digs in as per usual. Will they be John deButts (AT&T Chairman who fought and provoked a stronger reaction against the Bell System, or will they be Charlie Brown who negotiated a pretty good settlement with the feds? (He signed a consent decree that put the vast majority of the restrictions on the spun-off Bell Operating Companies.)

At 11:39 PM, Blogger Ray Hyde said...

TMT: I sure enjoy yur comments, even when I disagree. I hope we can have lunch some day.

If lucy is out there, that goes for you too.

Maybe we need a bloggers masquerade ball so we can keep our identities hidden.

At 9:42 PM, Blogger Toomanytaxes said...

Ray Hyde: Thank you for the kind words. I too enjoy your thoughtful comments, along with those of many others.

I would enjoy meeting you some day. I've learned many things over lunch.


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