Metro CEO Announces Revised November Sales Tax Proposal

Phil Washington outlines the latest version of Metro's sales tax expenditure plan. Photo: Joe Linton
Phil Washington outlines the latest version of Metro’s sales tax expenditure plan. Photo: Joe Linton

In a press briefing this afternoon, Metro CEO Phil Washington announced the latest changes to Metro’s planned November sales tax ballot measure. The proposal, which Washington calls “the most comprehensive in the country,” will be voted on by the Metro board in late June.

The biggest change today is that sales tax will have no sunset. Metro’s earlier expenditure plan would have lasted for only 40, 45 or 50 years. Washington’s “once and for all” new sales tax would continue indefinitely.

The lack of a sunset allows for better financing, especially in later years. This frees up monies to accelerate projects, both rail and highway, and to add a few new projects. Accelerated projects would include: Orange Line grade separation, Green Line to Torrance, West Santa Ana Branch rail, Gold Line extension east, Crenshaw North, and other projects.

The new plan also shifts funds slightly in a few categories, including increasing funds for local return and Metrolink. The new version of the plan increases local return from 16 percent to 17 percent, with a later increase to 20 percent in 2040. Metrolink funding would be increased from one percent to two percent. Administration and rail construction would be reduced by one percent each.

  • Adam G. Linder

    APPROVED.

  • MannyO Jr

    I really hope this becomes a reality but I want to see oversight of where the funds go. in the past it has been more common than not for one or a few to take advantage of public’s trust. it only takes one idiot to blow it for everyone.
    that said we need this BAD and I hope we get it passed! I’m thinking about all of the construction jobs that this will create in the area not to mention the money those employed will spend in local businesses in the area! I honestly think its a win win for everyone whether avid transit rider or “will never ride transit” residents. They’ve got my yes!

  • calwatch

    At least they’re being honest by making the tax indefinite. The problem is 2.25% for transportation is a LOT when we have other needs that need to be addressed. With a homeless tax, parks tax, income tax extension, etc. on the ballot it will be very interesting to see what gets supported. Having up to 20 measures on the ballot will certainly increase the number of people who throw their hands up in disgust and vote “no” on everything.

  • Well, it looks the High Desert Corridor will live to see another day if R2 passes. Hope advocates in LA at least have the foresight to stand up and demand that the option chosen be the one with a rail connection integrated in the project because we sure don’t have the voice out here in the IE. Once that freeway gets built, say hello to more sprawl in the Antelope and Victor valleys.