Tuesday’s Election Good News for Transportation Funding
Proposition 69 sailed to an overwhelming victory Tuesday, garnering more than 80 percent of the vote. It’s a clear message that Californian’s want the revenue from Senate Bill 1 (SB 1) to be spent on transportation projects as promised. However, the battle isn’t over. While it won’t be certain until later this month, the effort to repeal SB 1 will probably be on the November ballot. If it passes, thousands of road and transit improvement projects around the state could be halted in their tracks.
“Proposition 69’s landslide victory creates a lockbox for transportation funding,” said CSAC President and Kern County Supervisor Leticia Perez. “It is a clear sign that Californians are looking toward the future. They want better roads, more jobs and they won’t repeal SB1, which is making a historic and much-needed investment in our transportation infrastructure.”
“California counties are making our roads and bridges safer, relieving congestion, fixing potholes and addressing a huge backlog of deferred maintenance,” said CSAC Executive Director Graham Knaus. “Doing this work now saves lives, time lost stuck in traffic, and tax-payer money in the long run, but all that will be lost if the repeal passes.”
CSAC is a part of a coalition that was formed to support Proposition 69. Now that it has passed, the coalition is gearing up to fight the SB 1 repeal. “We are going to do everything we can to allow counties to continue the good work they are doing with the revenue from SB 1,” said Knaus. He noted that before SB 1, counties were facing a $73 billion 10-year funding shortfall to bring the system into a state of good repair. If SB 1 is repealed the number of failed local roads in the state will grow to 25-percent from 6-percent today.
“Transportation projects often extend into several years,” said Knaus. “You need to have a stable source of funding for the life of the project and that’s what SB 1 provides.”