Transportation Issues Fail on Election Day
- Written by Mark Kuhar
November 7, 2012 – Everyone knows that President Obama was re-elected, the Democrats held onto the Senate and the Republicans held onto the House of Representatives yesterday. According to NSSGA, three transportation ballot measures at the local level seeking increased sales or gas taxes went down to defeat. A Los Angeles County ballot measure known as Measure J that would have added a 30-year extension of a half-cent transportation sales tax and shaped the future of transportation funding fell just short of the two-thirds vote it needed for passage. Another California county, Alameda County, narrowly voted down Measure B1, which would have doubled the transportation sales tax to one cent and extend it. This would have brought in nearly $8 billion over 30 years. This measure also needed two-thirds for passage, but fell just shy with 65.54 percent of the vote. In Memphis, Tenn., residents voted down a one-cent increase in the gas tax to fund the Memphis Area Transit Authority. Federal lawmakers have struggled to gain traction on a gas tax boost and transit advocates were said to be eager to see how an increase in the gas tax would play out on a local level as a precursor to a push at the federal level.