Backers of proposition 6, the repeal of the gas tax increase, said Monday that they will launch a new campaign that asks voters to a approve a measure in 2020 that provides funds for California transportation projects without increasing gas prices, and would stop the expensive high-speed rail project.
Carl DeMaio, chairman of Reform California, the leader in the gas tax repeal movement, responded to the criticism that prop 6 will eliminate billions in funds to fix California's roads and said the goal of the new initiative is to fix "California’s roads without raising taxes on struggling working families of our state."
The new ballot measure, which would need 5000,000 signatures to qualify, aims to direct the governor to stop the high-speed rail construction, and would require any unspent funds from that construction to fund other transportation and road projects in the state. All gas and diesel tax revenue would go to road projects exclusively and not fund mass transit if the measure is passed.
The original estimated budget for the bullet train was $33 billion but it has since been raised to $77 billion and now due to delays, the full rail system is not planned to start operating until 2033.
"Creating a “lock box” to restrict the use of gas-tax money would provide at least $7.5 billion annually for road repairs," DeMaio said.
Last year’s gas tax increase is estimated to generate $5.2 billion each year.
The new ballot measure would also require annual performance and efficiency repair audits on road and bridge repair projects.
Additionally, DeMaio said the new initiative would also require annual performance and efficiency repair audits on road and bridge repair projects and would strip the state of some power over transportation funds, and transfer that authority to city and county governments to spend on local priorities instead.
Listen for Carl DeMaio on the show today at 2:00p.m. for more.
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