Coalition: Protect SB 1, Pass Proposition 69
May 3, 2018
After months of paid signature-gathering, the proponents of an effort to repeal SB 1, the Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017, turned in signatures this week that they say will qualify the effort for the November ballot. Passed last year by the state Legislature and signed by Governor Brown, SB 1 is already jump-starting transportation improvement projects in every community in the state. Repealing it would put an immediate stop to those projects.
It’s not entirely clear yet that the signatures turned in this week will be enough to qualify the measure. County and state elections officials will have to do a rough count and then also verify what percentage of signatures turned in are actually valid. However, CSAC and a coalition of other organizations are gearing up to fight the effort should it qualify.
“This is an ill-conceived effort that is mainly aimed at influencing voter-turnout in November,” said CSAC Executive Director Graham Knaus. “The potential loss of SB 1 funding would devastate our communities and require an immediate halt to hundreds of critical projects that are underway now to make roads and bridges safer and reduce congestion in every one of California’s 58 counties.”
One of the myths about SB 1 is that the funds can be “hijacked” by the Legislature for other purposes. About 60 percent of transportation funding is already constitutionally protected from that kind of “raid,” and Proposition 69, on the June ballot, will provide iron-clad protection for the remaining 40 percent. That’s why it’s also critically important to support Proposition 69.
In the meantime, CSAC and the Coalition to Protect Local Transportation Improvements are mounting a campaign to defeat the repeal of SB 1. “Recent polls show that California voters want safe, high-quality transportation systems,” said CSAC Deputy Executive Director for Legislative Affairs Darby Kernan. “That’s why the coalition that has formed around this issue includes business and labor organizations, environmental groups, law enforcement and a wide array of local governments. We are all working together to beat this thing because we know that the funding from SB 1 means safer and more reliable transportation in every community in the state. The partisan effort to repeal it would be a huge setback for transportation in California.”