• Major State Senate Transportation Funding Proposal Moves Forward Today

    November 30, 2015

    by Mark Watts.  The Senate Governance & Finance Committee today approved Senate Bill 16, a comprehensive transportation funding package which provides $3 billion – $3.5 billion annually to state and local highway and roadway preservation and repair over the next five years.

    SB 16, authored by Senate Transportation & Housing Chair Jim Beall, would generate new revenue for transportation by increasing several taxes and fees for the next five years.  Specifically, this bill would:

    • Recapture truck weight fees from transportation bond debt service for safety projects and highway repairs;
    • Raise the excise tax on gasoline by 10 cents in year one;
    • Raise the excise tax on diesel fuel by 12 cents in year one;
    • Raise vehicle license fees by .35% over five years;
    • Raise vehicle registration fees by $35;
    • Establish a new vehicle registration fee of $100 for zero-emission vehicles; and
    • Repay transportation loans.

    Speaker Atkins and Assembly Democrats Weigh in on Addressing State and Local Transportation Repair Needs

    Late yesterday, Assembly Speaker Atkins discussed the budget priorities for 2015-16. She highlighted the work she has been coordinating with Assembly Transportation Chair Jim Frazier and said:

    “Assembly Democrats will provide a ‘down-payment’ on the Speaker’s $2 billion transportation plan by returning most, if not all, the Truck Weight Fees to be used for roadway preservation and maintenance.”

  • Examining Beall’s Proposal On Deferred Road Repairs

    November 30, 2015

    California faces nearly $60 billion in deferred road repairs and the cost is going up every year. Now, a local state senator wants to do something about it. View NBC Video!


  • City of Sacramento Considering New Set of ‘Road Diets’

    November 30, 2015

    For years, Sacramento officials have been reducing lanes on major central city streets to slow traffic and give pedestrians and people on bikes more elbow room.  Read more

    BICYCLIST-Road Diet

  • Caltrans Award to Integrate Transit, Bicycling and Walking into Local Transportation Plans

    November 30, 2015

    Caltrans has awarded $9.8 million in Sustainable Transportation Planning Grants to support cities, counties, agencies and transit operators in their efforts to integrate transit, bicycling and walking into their local transportation plans. Read more

  • New ARTBA Analysis Examines Costs of Mobility

    November 30, 2015


    The average American driver is only being asked to contribute 1.2 percent of their annual cost to own and operate a motor vehicle to fund federal investments in highway and transit capital improvements. Read more

  • SB 16 Approved by Senate Transportation & Housing on a 6-1 Vote

    April 29, 2015

    Wake Up California-fix the roads!

    (Mark Watts, Transportation California)  The Senate Transportation & Housing Committee on a 6-1 vote approved SB 16, Senator Beall’s measure to provide additional highway and roadway preservation and maintenance funding. Read more

  • California Needs Volunteers To Test Road Charge

    April 23, 2015

    State Government Report

    Gas tax revenues are steadily declining in California and lawmakers are looking for other ways to fund road repairs. Now the state is creating a pilot program that would instead charge drivers based on the miles they drive. California Transportation Commissioner Jim Madaffer is leading the pilot effort. He says the gas tax isn’t working anymore.

    “We need a funding mechanism that kind of gets us back to when the gas tax was first implemented where it made sense. Everybody was getting 10 miles to a gallon in their car. And everybody put in gas only in their vehicles. So it was pretty fair,” he says. “Today, people such as myself driving an electric car for the last two years, I haven’t paid a dime. Well, that’s not right.”

    Governor Jerry Brown’s administration estimates California has a $59 billion road maintenance backlog.

    Ideally, Madaffer says, volunteers would sign up throughout the state so the road charge could be tested in a variety of situations. Details like whether volunteers would be reimbursed for the fee have not yet been decided.

    A pilot program must be in place by 2017. A final report must be presented to the Legisalture by 2018.

    This effort is an addition to several others being proposed by lawmakers. Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins has proposed charging drivers about $52 a year, with the money going to road repairs. Senator Jim Beall has authored a bill that would fund road maintenance through increased gas taxes and higher vehicle registration fees. Senator Bob Huff has introduced a Constitutional amendment to require funds designated for transportation be used for that purpose.

    Katie Orr

    Katie Orr covers everything from the Governor to state agencies. She received her Masters in Political Science from San Diego State University. In her spare time Katie enjoys wine tasting and shopping, though she tries not to combine the two.   Read Full Bio 
  • Lawmakers Tackle $59 billion Backup for Road Repairs

    April 15, 2015

    (KCRA) — California drivers will be the first to admit that roadways are in need of massive repair… Watch report: Pothole problems prompt lawmakers to consider extra funding – Read more

  • April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month—Even Hands-free Devices are a Danger

    April 8, 2015

    April has been designated as Distracted Driving Awareness Month, and many states are taking the opportunity to commemorate the event with sweeps by state police to ticket violators of distracted driving laws… Read more...

  • Stand Up 4 Transportation

    March 30, 2015

    On April 9, supporters around the nation are uniting in their communities and online to send a powerful message to Congress: It’s time to provide long-term investment for America’s transportation network.

    Only comprehensive, long-term federal funding will enable us to repair, maintain, and adequately expand America’s public transportation, roads, bridges, ports, and rail systems to help bring our national transportation system up to speed with the 21st century.

    Short-term, inconsistent funding slows progress and costs America’s taxpayers more in the long run.

    Communities around the country are coming together to take part in Stand Up 4 Transportation Day.  (click to Sign the Petition!)

    Congress must take action by May 31. They need to know it’s not acceptable simply to keep kicking the can down the road a few months at a time.

    Help us urge Congress: Take real, bi-partisan action to support transportation in our communities.