LA Times analysis shows that ballot-box support for Measure J (the 30-year transit tax extension) dropped by 6% county-wide as compared with support for the original transit tax, Measure R, back in 2009. The kicker: support fell 16% here in Beverly Hills. We has been among the greatest boosters for Measure R. The article cites acrimony over the proposed subway alignment for causing the decline, and notes that those areas (like BH) where support fell most are behind the failure of Measure J to pass, falling short by only 0.4% at the ballot box.
Measure J, the initiative on the Los Angeles County ballot to extend the voter approved half-cent transportation sales tax, has found support among transit advocates and some cycling advocates too. A two-thirds ‘yes’ vote on J would extend the ‘sunset’ of the 2008-era 30-year tax hike for an additional 30 years in order to generate $67 billion total for mobility investment across the county. (About $43 billion from the Measure J extension.) With Metro behind it, it’s tempting to go along because we do need transit options. But this initiative amplifies concerns that accompanied the original Measure R and is one of three tax-hike proposals on the ballot. It may not have sufficiently broad support. Already two key LA County Supervisors, Ridley-Thomas and Antonovich, have declined to endorse it. We join them. With 26 years yet to go on Measure R yet, we feel that leveraging a sales tax increase so far into the future for improvements not clearly specified (much less costed) begs voters take a pass. Continue reading