Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Pierce Homer At The CBDA

On Tuesday Virginia Secretary of Transportation Pierce Homer was the speaker at the September luncheon of the Central Business District Association (CBDA). He talked about Transportation, and the picture was very bleak.

First, tax collections dedicated to Transportation are down 22.7%. Second, within two years Virginia will face having to forego Federal matching funds and/or reducing roads maintenance further. Third, by FY 2011 the state allocation of urban roads money to Virginia Beach will be zeroed out.

However, the bombshell was on Higher Speed Rail (HSR). When questioned by former City Councilman Billy Harrison on the issue, Secretary Homer gave an answer that inferred that he prefers HSR going to the Peninsula before South Hampton Roads. Homer cited the amount of freight traffic projected along the rail line in The 460 Corridor, and thought that and HSR wouldn't mix well.

Just another reason to vote for Bob McDonnell for Governor: letting Dem holdovers make the decision on HSR means it goes to Newport News before Norfolk.


Hampton Roads said...

RE: "Secretary Homer gave an answer that inferred that he prefers HSR going to the Peninsula before South Hampton Roads."

Henry-nothing could be further from the truth. He's been working for BOTH connections!

Secretary Homer spoke at the Hampton Roads Partnership Annual Board Meeting on June 19th. In a nutshell, per notes I took at the presentation:

"It is a false dichotomy to say High Speed Rail would go to one side of the water in Hampton Roads and not the other. The goal is to connect both sides, Peninsula and Southside. "That's what it will take to make the region successful," said Homer."

Here is the link to my blog post about his presentation, and check the comments for my complete notes on rail.

-Missy Schmidt, HRP Communication Manager

Avenging Archangel said...

Were you at the CBDA luncheon? No, you weren't. Then don't try to tell me what Secretary Homer said. I was there.

Michael Ragsdale said...

Henry doesn't want to loose his NNTC Taco Cheese Taquitos (which is what would happen if you build the Downtown Newport News HSR station - NNTC would be moved a few blocks over, away from the 7-Eleven)

Reid Greenmun said...

Henry, your nasty tone with Missy really wasn't appropriate or desreved. Missy is a terrific person and you really should consider apologizing to her for your rude and hostile response.

A more polite way to say the same thing you stated might have been like this:

"Missy, thank you for your contributions to our conversation. I welcome all viewpoints on my blog.

In this case I disagree with your understanding of this issue. It appeared clear to me that Mr. Homer has changed his position on this matter since you heard him ack in June based on his most recent comments at the CBDA lunch.

You may want to contact Mr. Nomer as ask him to clarify his position on this matter."

See? You can communicate the same point without being nasty and rude.

Just a suggestion to help you attrack more contributors to your blog.

Avenging Archangel said...


Missy accused me of fabricating a post on my blog, even though she hadn't been at the luncheon and didn't know what had actually been said.

In addition, you trying to play Miss Manners is rich: your VBTA leads Virginia Beach politics in uncivil behavior by a wide margin.

Reid Greenmun said...

Henry, it is sad that you fail to heed good advice. Your anger and hostility obviously blind you.

You still owe Missy an apology for your unjustied attack. But clearly you are not mature enough or rational enough to understand these things - that being civility.

Avenging Archangel said...


When your VBTA starts acting civil you'll have room to talk. Until then, you're a hypocrite for trying to go for points on civility.

Neither "mature enough or rational enough" describes VBTA positions perfectly.

Hampton Roads said...


Please accept my humble apologies for any perceived miscommunication. Your comment: "Missy accused me of fabricating a post on my blog" is the result of text online that may leave interpretation open to misunderstanding. I would never presume to do any such thing, Henry. (And I rarely say/write "never.") I was merely adding references for you and your readers as to what has been presented to HRP and the region as true.


Thank you for defending my honor. :-)

Thanks to you both for advancing the discussion. Did I hear that one of the newspapers picked up on this thread?

Hampton Roads said...

Oh, and thanks for referencing the website as your original point of contention showing an either/or recommendation. The website has been updated and now shows service to both Southside and Peninsula as a viable option.

We all learn from better communication (me, too!); thanks!

Aubrey Layne, CBDA President said...

As the President of the Central Business District Association, and an attendee at the CBDA’s September luncheon, I did not make the same inference from Secretary Homer's remarks as you did.

Pierce Homer’s answer to the question on the location for a High Speed rail station was that so many people frame the question as ‘either or’ when we actually need connections to both the Peninsula and south Hampton Roads. He also stated that even more important than sheer speed for the High Speed Rail is the frequency of trains, and reliability of the service.