ELECTION 2014: Road revenue questions on multiple California town ballots

By Keith Goble, Land Line state legislative editor | 10/17/2014

Ballots in communities up and down the state of California include questions about raising revenue for roads.

In northern California, voters in one Siskiyou County locale will decide on new revenue for roads. The ballot in the city of Weed will include a question about whether to increase the city’s sales tax by one-quarter percent.

Measure J would authorize additional revenue to be used for “general purposes,” which includes street maintenance.

Located about three hours south off Interstate 5, voters in the town of Paradise will decide whether to raise additional revenue for such services as street maintenance. Passage of Measure C on the ballot would increase the sales tax by one-half percent for six years.

Voters in El Dorado County will decide on multiple questions that cover traffic congestion.

Measure M on the countywide ballot would continue the ban on building new subdivisions if the California Department of Transportation determines that any county stretch of Highway 50 west of the city of the Placerville would experience increased congestion during peak traffic times. The restriction would remain in place until highway traffic levels are improved.

Measure N on the county’s ballot would extend through 2025 provisions that require developers to pay for needed improvements along Highway 50. The requirement is set to sunset in 2018.

Also in the county, voters in the city of Placerville will decide the fate of various traffic features.

Measure K on the local ballot will ask voters whether the city should be barred from constructing roundabouts, traffic circles or other “similar traffic features” without first getting voter approval.

Supporters of roundabouts say the alternative to traditional intersections reduces congestion and improves air quality. Critics want a say in whether the circular intersections are used in the town of 10,500 residents.

A separate question on the town’s ballot would benefit roads. Measure I would increase the local sales tax by 0.5 percent for 10 years. At least 75 percent of the estimated $1.8 million raised each year would be used for local roads.

In the Los Angeles area, voters in two Ventura County communities will cast ballots that include questions about raising road revenue. They are:

  • Port Hueneme: Measure M asks voters whether to impose a business tax to pay for general city services that include street maintenance.
  • Santa Paula: Measure F asks voters whether to charge a one percent sales tax to fund services that include street repair and maintenance.

In Los Angeles County, voters in the city of Artesia will decide whether to impose a general purpose utility user tax of 4.9 percent. Measure Y would designate the revenue for projects that include road and street work.

Another Los Angeles-area community will also include a transportation question on the local ballot. Voters in the city of Costa Mesa can weigh in on the use of toll lanes.

Measure P is an advisory question that will ask voters whether they support a state proposal for new toll lanes on a stretch of the 405 Freeway.

For more 2014 election coverage from Land Line on local ballot questions in California click here.

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