State Legislature’s Special Session on Transportation Funding

According to Governor Brown’s administration, California’s current transportation infrastructure deficit is $59 billion.  We’re glad that the issue is getting some much-needed attention, and hopefully lawmakers will find a responsible way to pay for some of that needed repair and maintenance.  But one thing is clear.  Regardless of what lawmakers do during the special session, we can no longer afford to build costly road expansion projects which will increase the repair and maintenance deficit, as the oversized truck projects at Richardson Grove and on Highways 199/197 will do.

From the Times-Standard:

“…Brown’s administration says California faces a $59 billion backlog in infrastructure repairs over the next decade. He called a special session of the state Legislature to address it, but lawmakers have been slow to act….

Lawmakers from both parties agree the state’s transportation tax structure is out of date and heavily reliant on a gas tax that has not increased in 20 years. Today’s cars are more fuel efficient and electric car drivers pay little to maintain the roads they drive on.

Transportation advocates and lawmakers have proposed a variety of fixes, including hiking fees on gas, vehicle registration and licenses; re-directing money used to pay off state debt back to road projects; and converting carpool lanes into paid tollways. Brown’s administration is studying how to eventually tax drivers for miles traveled instead of gas guzzled….

“We need to fix our crumbling infrastructure. At the same time, we need to reduce our carbon footprint. It’s not one or the other,” said de Leon, D-Los Angeles…”

Read the full article.