If all measures are approved, more than $100 billion in new local funding would be invested in transportation. In the very first year of implementation, $3.4 billion would be available for vital projects like restoring bus service, expanding rail lines and accelerating transit projects in communities from Los Angeles to Chapel Hill, N.C.
A historic number of transportation measures have been placed on ballots in 2012. Heading into Election Day, voters have approved 85% of the 39 measures that have already gone before them this year. Since 2000, CFTE has monitored the continuing trend of states and communities asking voters to approve new transportation investments. The long-term success rate for these measures stands at a strong 70%, a rate double that of ballot measures generally.
Twelve of Tuesday’s transportation measures deal directly with finance, the most prominent of which is Measure J in Los Angeles County. Voters will be asked to extend the current half-cent sales tax that was just approved in 2008 for an additional 30 years. This will allow the community to complete seven transit projects in 13 years instead of 27.
Meanwhile, Orange County, N.C. seeks to follow the 2011 success of neighboring Durham County with a new half-cent sales tax to support countywide bus and rail investment, with voters in other regions being asked to support new bonds and property levies, and in a unique case.