Dave Min is a UCI Law Professor, a nationally recognized economic policy expert and a former Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) prosecutor. Dave has testified six times before Congress and helped develop major economic legislation. These days he is running for State Senate 37 and has been endorsed by CalBike as the candidate who supports bicycling in California. Here are some excerpts from their candidate questionnaire.
What measures do you support California taking in terms of climate protection? What else, besides electrification of cars and trucks, do you support to reduce this sector’s impact on greenhouse gas emissions?
I believe that climate change is the defining crisis of our time, and that California must be a leader in promoting policies that radically reduce carbon emissions, not only in our state but across the world. I am the only candidate in this race that has come out in favor of a Green New Deal type framework, because I believe we have to radically reduce our own state’s emissions and also because I believe our state can help nurture a booming green economy that is a leader on various green technologies like renewable efficiency and large storage batteries.
The reality is that electric vehicles are not enough. We must do more to move away from the car culture that has defined California development over our past 100 years.
Californians should have housing options that allow them to bike and walk to work. I am so fortunate that I am able to walk (or more frequently ride my scooter) to work, but this should not be seen as a luxury for the elite. At the same time, emphasizing mass transit investments will effectively expand the pool of affordable housing options for working Californians.
Walking and biking account for 18% of trips taken by Californians. Only one fund — the Active Transportation Program — is a competitive grant program dedicated solely to support those trips with safety and access improvements and every cycle is oversubscribed multifold. It receives 1.6% of the state’s transportation total budget. Do you think it is appropriate to spend at least 18% for active transportation expansion? If no, what percentage do you support?
I would need to look into the particulars of the state’s transportation budget and better understand the particulars before committing to a particular target but over the long run, it seems reasonable to expect that 18% or more of our state’s existing transportation budget is devoted to active transportation such as walking and biking. Right now, it is often difficult and dangerous for Californians (including in most parts of my district) to ride their bikes or walk because we have designed our transportation infrastructure almost entirely around cars. We should be emphasizing active transportation initiatives such as progressive bikeway design, low-stress bikeway networks, and complete streets with adequate space for pedestrians, bikers, and mass transit.
In California, low-income communities of color are disproportionately burdened by the impacts of streets designed primarily for cars, without receiving proportional funding for their mobility modes like walking, biking, and public transit. Do you support prioritizing these communities when it comes to transportation decisions? If so, by what type of policies? If no, describe why not.
Yes. As we think about greening our transportation infrastructure, we should be mindful of the inequities that are already faced by low-income communities of color, and not exacerbate these through our investments. Active transportation should not simply be emphasized for upper middle class communities, especially given the dearth of transit options that typically exist in communities of color.
As a progressive candidate of color in Orange County, I am highly cognizant of the racial and economic injustices that our government policies often create. I have been a frequent presence in communities that have typically been ignored by both Republicans and Democrats, and I hope to build on these relationships once elected, by creating community partnerships and empowering low-income communities of color as we discuss a transition towards a greener transportation infrastructure.
As we think about greening our transportation infrastructure, we should be mindful of the inequities that are already faced by low-income communities of color, and not exacerbate these through our investments. Active transportation should not simply be emphasized for upper middle class communities, especially given the dearth of transit options that typically exist in communities of color. – Dave Min
California currently encourages residents to replace gasoline-powered cars with cleaner vehicles through its Clean Vehicle Rebate Project, but the program excludes those residents who cannot afford cars and has no provisions to help Californians purchase sustainable transportation options like bicycles, cargo bicycles, or electric-assisted e-bikes. Do you support creating a program to incentivize the purchase of bikes and/or e-bikes and/or cargo bikes used for transportation and delivery?
While I am not opposed to rebates for electric vehicles, I also believe this is essentially a subsidy to wealthier households. What about those who can’t afford an electric car? I am the only candidate in this race that has come out in favor of transit-oriented reforms beyond just providing EV incentives and more charging stations.
I strongly support funding for bikes and other forms of transit. I myself own and ride an electric scooter to work (which is charged through my solar panels). However, I also think we should be pushing more mass transit options.
Dave and his wife Jane have three young kids. Their free time is usually spent together, going to the beach, shopping at farmers markets, or playing sports. Dave enjoys running, cycling and doing the Sunday crossword puzzle. Dave Min has always been a strong advocate for green solutions in California. Learn more about Dave Min’s platform at www.davemin.com.