On November 5th, voters in 19 states sent a decisive message of support for transportation investment, approving 89% of 305 state and local transportation measures on ballots across the nation.
In total, the 270 approved initiatives are expected to generate over $9.6 billion in one-time and recurring revenue, according to analysis conducted by the American Road & Transportation Builders Association’s Transportation Investment Advocacy Center™ (ARTBA-TIAC).
The preliminary results reaffirm a decade-long trend of strong voter support for investments to maintain and improve their state or local transportation networks. Voters have approved 81% of nearly 2,000 transportation investment ballot measures tracked by ARTBA-TIAC since 2010, including this year’s results.
This year’s approved measures will support $7.7 billion in new transportation investment revenue and $1.9 billion in continued funding through tax extensions, renewals or protections.
The need for investment in surface transportation infrastructure was clearly demonstrated in the initiatives — 75% of the measures awarded funds to improve highways, streets and bridges; 16% tackled the needs of multimodal transportation; and 8% focused on transit and rail.
“The ballot results are a great reminder that infrastructure investment remains one of the few areas where red states, blue states, Republicans and Democrats can all come together,” ARTBA President Dave Bauer said. “It should also demonstrate to lawmakers on Capitol Hill that the public will be on board for the passage of a long-term bill that significantly boosts highway and transit investment at the federal level.”
In California, voters opted-in wholeheartedly, approving 100% of the ballot measures they were asked to consider. The six approved measures are anticipated to generate $30 million annually.
These new funds augment the transportation funds approved in 2017 with the passage of Senate Bill 1, the Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017, which invests $5.4 billion annually in California’s transportation infrastructure. SB 1 also brings the benefit of job creation; according to the White House Council of Economic Advisors, every $1 billion invested in transportation infrastructure supports 13,000 jobs a year.
“Public support for increasing infrastructure investment will help local governments and the transportation construction community improve safety, mobility and overall quality of life for residents as projects get underway,” said Carolyn Kramer, ARTBA-TIAC director.