Also serving the communities of De Luz, Rainbow, Camp Pendleton, Pala and Pauma

A pothole in the wallet

Assemblymember Marie Waldron

AD-75 (R)

Special interests and bought-off legislators recently passed the largest gasoline tax increase in California history. And not one new highway mile will be built to help reduce congestion, not one.

Last session, I introduced AB X1-14 during the transportation special session called by the governor. It required a formal commitment in the State Budget General Fund to provide $1 billion annually for transportation without raising taxes or fees.

According to revenue forecasts by the non-partisan Legislative Analyst’s Office, state revenues were sufficient to fully fund education and the state’s Rainy Day Fund and still dedicate $1 billion to transportation.

My bill was part of a nine-point, $6.6 billion plan to pay for transportation infrastructure and roads using existing tax dollars. Unlike the new gas tax plan, these funds would have supported traffic congestion relief, road maintenance and mass transit. Unfortunately, the Democrat majority refused to consider the plan and none of the bills received a committee hearing or floor vote.

Transportation funds from existing gas taxes have been raided to the tune of $1 billion annually for other uses. In my floor speech, I asked for an audit of where all this money has gone.

Our gasoline taxes are already among nation’s highest. If transportation was a priority to majority politicians, it would already be budgeted, not an after-thought excuse for tax increases.

Our highways need an upgrade, but misplaced priorities by the governing majority should not result in gouging hard working men and women. Californians deserve better.

 

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