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Election 2012: California counties to decide on transportation questions
By Keith Goble, Land Line state legislative editor

Voters in multiple San Francisco-area counties will decide Nov. 6 whether sales tax increases and higher vehicle fees will benefit roads and transit.

Ballots in Napa County will include a question about whether to raise the sales tax by one half-cent for transportation projects throughout the county. The tax, which would be in effect for 25 years, is estimated to generate about $11 million annually.

Voters would need to pass the tax by a two-thirds majority to take effect. If approved, the tax would kick in during the summer of 2018. It would replace the county’s current half-cent sales tax for flood control.

The $282 million in new money would pay for repairs to local streets and roads.

In nearby Alameda County, voters will cast ballots on whether to double the transportation sales tax. If approved, the tax would permanently double from one-half cent to one full cent.

The 30-year, $7.7 billion initiative would be used to fix potholes, improve roads and freeways, and expand public transit throughout the county.

Voters in Santa Cruz County will decide whether to approve a new $10 vehicle registration fee for road repairs. The new fee would be applied to all vehicles registered in the county.

It is estimated to raise $2.2 million annually. Revenue would be routed to cities throughout the county based on population.

About half of the money would go to unincorporated areas.

To take effect, two-thirds of all voters in the county would need to cast ballots in favor of the increase.

For more 2012 election coverage from Land Line, click here.

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