A new survey shows that the majority of California voters oppose Proposition 6 — the November ballot measure that would repeal Senate Bill 1 increases to the state gas tax to pay for improvements to roads, bridges and mass transit. “Across all of the state’s major regions, fewer than half say they would vote yes,” said Mark Baldassare, President of the Public Policy Institute of California, a nonpartisan research group.
Echoing public opinion and joining 450 organizations that oppose Prop 6, SoCal Editorial Boards are weighing in:
The Los Angeles Times
It’s hard to overstate how destructive Proposition 6 would be for California. It would eliminate $5 billion a year from the state budget, wiping out funds that could be used to fill potholes, smooth highways and stabilize bridges. It would cancel funding for projects designed to move cargo more cleanly and efficiently, hurting the state’s vital freight industry.
And for what? Sure, you might save $1.50 every time you fill up your sedan. But you’ll spend a lot more [on repairs caused by] driving on potholed and damaged roads. Infrastructure isn’t cheap, and Californians will pay the price no matter what. We can pay a little more at the gas pump now for a smoother, safer and more efficient transportation system. Take the responsible road and vote No on Proposition 6.
San Diego Tribune
Proposition 6 is certain to appeal to the Californians who feel overtaxed. The exaggerated claims about how much this would save motorists and how certain it is that the funds generated by the law will be diverted for non-transportation uses are also sure to round up votes.
Nonetheless, The San Diego Union-Tribune Editorial Board encourages a No vote on Proposition 6. The protections meant to ensure funds are used properly — for road and transit improvements — are substantive. And it’s obvious that the state has an immense backlog of transportation renovations that are needed to keep our economy strong. The 2017 tax legislation amounts to an affirmation that our roads and freeways are and will be hugely important for many years to come. Nothing in California’s history suggests fixing these roads and freeways is feasible without it. Vote No on Proposition 6.
Ventura County Star
Since [last year], we have seen the first of what promises to be many benefits from SB 1. Ventura County already has benefited, receiving allocations for various local projects. That includes $68.6 million for construction of a long-awaited Rice Avenue bridge over railroad tracks in Oxnard — the site of a fatal Metrolink train crash in 2015.
We recognize the losses that repealing SB 1 would bring. California’s economy and population depend on a strong highway and road network, and many projects will not be funded if Prop 6 passes. The state gas tax increases were the first in 23 years. They are a fair form of user fee — those who drive the most pay the most. And under Proposition 69, approved by state voters in June, the new revenue cannot be diverted to other uses. With this safeguard in place and a huge need for road improvements in our state… Our position is clear: we urge you to vote No on Proposition 6.
“Southern California Partnership for Jobs supports infrastructure investment. We advocated for the passage of SB 1, a new transportation funding source that is becoming ever more critical for California. We oppose any efforts to repeal SB 1 that would rob our communities of vital road safety and transportation improvement funds. We urge Californians to vote No on Prop 6 this November.” — John Hakel, Executive Director.
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