Metropolitan Transportation Plan Update

On November 7, 2019, the Environmental Council of Sacramento (ECOS) submitted comments on the recently proposed update to our region’s Metropolitan Transportation Plan/Sustainable Communities Strategy (MTP/SCS). These comments were submitted via one letter solely from ECOS, and a joint letter from both ECOS and 350 Sacramento. Below is an excerpt from our comments, followed by links to PDFs of both letters.

The Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG) has put forth a sophisticated Metropolitan Transportation Plan/Sustainable Communities Strategy (MTP/SCS), a regional plan that the region’s jurisdictions should follow. While this regional plan is not a strong as we feel it could be, the 2020 MTP/SCS is a viable strategy for the region to meet its regional greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction targets mandated by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) per Senate Bill 375 (2008).

The plan represents a reasonable compromise between what the region could accomplish if the political will existed, and the reality of much more expansive car-oriented, low-density growth that is actually being actively pursued by some of the region’s jurisdictions on the ground. ECOS would prefer a greater percentage of transportation investment to non-auto modes, and a much more compact land use footprint than proposed. The Sacramento region is not meeting its mandated GHG reduction targets because local jurisdictions are not complying with the strategy that SACOG has laid out for them, and the State must do more to ensure compliance of local authorities to our Sustainable Community Strategies, as well as to ensure the State’s own investments are aligned with its climate laws.

Click here to read the comment letter by ECOS on the MTP/SCS.

Click here to read the comment letter by ECOS and 350 Sacramento on the Climate Change section of the MTP/SCS, which was submitted separately.

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Sacramento Needs Public Bathrooms

Need to go to the bathroom in Sacramento? Good luck! Unless you are close to home or happen to be somewhere where you have just been a customer (but what if you didn’t “have to go” then?) your chances of finding a toilet are slim. Even our parks are lacking. According to the Sacramento Bee, “…the city operates 205 parks, but most either have no bathrooms or have facilities with limited hours. In the central city…only 5 of 22 parks have restroom facilities.” Many times, park bathrooms are locked up without warning or notice of when they may reopen.

Many of the river access points closest to downtown Sacramento completely lack any bathrooms for beach-goers, such as Sutter’s Landing. Imagine taking your family to have a nice day at the beach, only to find that your kids or your aunt have no where to relieve themselves! That’s what Sacramento is like, and it’s time to change that.

Why? Diseases, for one thing! Now the river is full of bacterias that can make people really sick, like E. Coli.

Read all about it in this SacBee article, published September 12, 2019.

Sacramento will continue to struggle with sanitation and risk of disease so long as the city refuses to provide an adequate number of public restrooms, on and off the river, for both people who are experiencing homelessness and those who are not.

Alexandra Reagan

Director of Operations, ECOS

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Placer County Sustainability Plan Comments

On September 05, 2019, ECOS and 350 Sacramento wrote a comment letter to the Placer County Community Development Resources Agency in regards to the Placer County Sustainability Plan.

Below are a couple of excerpts from the letter, click the link below to read the full letter.

We encourage all efforts to expedite the transition to a carbon-free economy and are gratified by the County’s aspiration to be a leader in reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. We offer these comments in the hope they will help the County reach that goal.

It is evident from the draft Plan’s strong monitoring and update commitments that it is meant to be a “living” document, subject to ongoing community dialogue and further refinement. We look forward to working with the County to advance the Plan’s important role in mitigating climate change.

Click here to view the comment letter in full.

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