Prop 6 Opponents Ignore Truth about Transit Spending in Gas Tax Increase

Morris Brown
Founder of DERAIL, a grassroots effort against the California high-speed rail Project

Spending gas taxes on public transit isn’t a misuse, it’s what California voters wantis the title of the LA Times editorial promoting opposition to Proposition 6 (the gas tax repeal).
Such an editorial would be expected from the Times editorial board, which still advocates building the $77 billion (and climbing) cost for the High Speed Rail boondoggle.

If indeed the voters do want their gas taxes spent on public transit, then why do all the ads and promotions to defeat Prop 6, say little or nothing that 40 per cent of the gas tax revenues raised by SB-1, ( which Prop 6 will stop), will go to transit projects, and not to “fixing potholes and highways”. Indeed the voters are being told only about fixing the potholes, and more often than not, nothing is being said about only 60 percent will go to highway repair, while the rest will fund transit, which might well include High Speed Rail (HSR).

Senator Jim Beall (San Jose) was the leader for passage of SB-1 in the legislature. Anyone who has followed at all Senator Beall’s agenda, knows full well he cares little or nothing about highways but is a huge supporter of transit, including High Speed Rail, and even now is an ex-official member of the HSR Authority board.

The Times editorial mentions “Republicans put Proposition 6 on the ballot in a nakedly partisan attempt to boost GOP turnout in the midterm.” Why doesn’t the editorial mention that SB-1 managed to pass in the legislature only by getting a single Republican member of the State Senate to vote for passage, and only after he was allotted a special $400 million to his district for transit.

Clearly voters don’t want their gas tax dollars being spent on transit. Voters want gas tax dollars spent to repair and build roads, and not diverted elsewhere.

The editorial mentions a statement made by Diane Harkey, currently in a tough campaign for election to the House of Representatives (District 49). Harkey said:

“This is just fraud. It’s forcing you to take bikes, get on trains, hose off at the depot and try to get to work. That does not work. That does not work with my hair and heels. I cannot do that and I will not do that.”

Harkey, previously a termed out member of the State Assembly, really hit the target with this statement.

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