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Readers React: Carping about carpool lanes

To the editor: Gov. Jerry Brown is wrong. (“No changing lanes for carpools,” Sept. 29)

Carpool lanes should be open for general use during non-rush hour driving. I have driven solo in the freeway carpool lanes in Sacramento during non-rush hour traffic; it makes complete sense having an extra lane, for numerous reasons.

I live in Orange County and use our freeway systems at nonpeak times. I drive into work at 11:30 a.m. and the carpool lane is usually empty. All other lanes of the 57 Freeway are jammed.

Having the carpool lane open would improve flow and allow for safer traveling, maintenance and speed.

This decision is a no-brainer, but what can I say?

Dave Perez, Placentia

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To the editor: I agree with the governor’s decision not to open carpool lanes to all motorists during off-peak hours, but his veto ignored the bigger problem: the express lanes reserved for motorists willing and able to pay to drive in them.

The express lanes were built by taxpayers — all of us — yet for some reason have been turned over to the privileged. These lanes have replaced carpool lanes on some freeways, so there is no incentive for commuters to ride-share along those routes.

Aren’t these thoroughfares called freeways, not turnpikes?

Jim Kalin, Los Angeles

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To the editor: It’s time to ask what is the purpose of carpool lanes. The purported reason was that coworkers would ride together, thereby removing a car from the road and thus helping with emissions and fuel consumption.

Nice theory, but as with so many liberal agendas, it’s just another feel-good measure — and nonsense.

Show me the study that accurately documents that carpool lane users have removed a car from that commute. Does the taxicab remove a vehicle? Does mama with the baby? Do the two workers in their truck going to a job?

These people are not carpooling.

Remember, it is the everyday drivers paying the high gasoline taxes who are wrongfully denied the use of the carpool lanes.

Meanwhile, the good old governor vetoes a bill that would allow drivers to use some of the carpool lanes here during nonpeak hours, as Northern California does.

John Moran, Thousand Oaks

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To the editor: It’s time that we as drivers take back control of our streets, which are being overregulated by the “road diet” and “traffic calming” mind-set, by placing an initiative on the ballot.

We need a drivers’ bill of rights. We need to place the emphasis back on moving the traffic faster, not slower.

Robin Patton, Pasadena

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