Want more frequent service? Jerry Hill bill proposes more cap and trade funding for transit operations

California’s  Cap and Trade program is bringing over a billion dollars a year in funding with the intent to reduce carbon emissions.   In the current special session of the legislature focusing on infrastructure, Senator Jerry Hill is sponsoring a bill, SBX1-8 that would allocate substantially more cap and trade funding for transit capital projects which reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and transit operating funding. The companion bill in the Assembly is ABX1-7 (Nazarian, D-Van Nuys).   Because the majority of the revenue supporting the Cap and Trade program is derived from transportation fuels, it makes sense to use more of the revenue to reduce transportation emissions.

 

To help, you can send letters in support of the bills.   Mention the bill number and why you want to see more funding for transit. 

Senator Jerry Hill, SBX1-8, attention Nate Solov: Nate.Solov@sen.ca.gov
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ssembly Member Adrin Nazarian, ABX1-7, attention Brian.stedge@asm.ca.gov

Feel free to refer to Friends of Caltrain, and copy us at friends@friendsofcaltrain.com

Additional operating funding for Caltrain would be particular helpful. Running more frequent service on Caltrain would help take more cars off the road at rush hour and help more people lead car-light and car-free lifestyles.   Caltrain brings in over 60% of revenue from passengers, which is excellent for a service of this type, but that will still leave about $25 million in public funding needed after electrification.  

More frequent transit service

More frequent transit service (as one would see on TransitScreen)

Currently, 60% of Cap and Trade revenue is allocated by category, and 40% is available to be allocated at the legislature’s discretion.  The bill would dedicate another 10% to a competitive grant funding for transit capital raising an additional $200 million, and an additional 5% to transit operations, raising an additional $100 million per year.

Existing law

60 percent of Cap and Trade locked down as a continuous appropriation:
25 – high-speed rail
20 – housing and sustainable communities
10 – TIRCP – transit & rail capital
5 – transit formula – transit & bus

40 percent left for the legislature to decide each year.

Proposed with SB 8 x1:

75 percent of Cap and Trade locked down as a continuous appropriation
25 – high-speed rail
20 – housing and sustainable communities
20 – TIRCP – transit & rail capital
10 – transit formula – transit & bus
25 percent left for the legislature to decide each year.

Diesel tax to fund transit

Another pair of bills in the special session would increase the sales tax on diesel fuel by 3.5 percent on diesel fuel to further support transit capital and operations.  This bill would require a ⅔ majority of the legislature to pass.   AB1X 8 (Chiu) and SBX1-7 (Allen).  These bills increase the sales tax on diesel fuel, which in turn would increase revenues to the State Transit Assistance Fund to support capital needs and operating costs of local transit agencies.

To help, you can send letters in support of the bills.   Mention the bill number and why you want to see more funding for transit. 

Assembly Member Chiu, ABX1-8, attention Judson True. Judson.True@asm.ca.gov
Senator Allen, SBX1-7, attention James.Reina@sen.ca.gov

Feel free to refer to Friends of Caltrain, and copy us at friends@friendsofcaltrain.com

Jim Beall’s big bill for bridge and roadway repair

The biggest focus of the special session is a bill that would increase the gas tax and vehicle registration fees, and use it to fill a $5.7 billion backlog road, street, bridge repairs, and improving freight mobility at ports.   Instead, state Republicans would rather take funding from Cap and Trade funding and use it for roads, arguing with straight faces that paving roads will reduce greenhouse gas emission.