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June 11, 2013 > Transportation Bill advances to Senate floor

Transportation Bill advances to Senate floor

Submitted By Jeff Barbosa

Assemblymember Bob Wieckowski's (D-Fremont) bill to allow Alameda and Contra Costa counties to seek transportation sales tax measures to improve their infrastructure was approved June 5, 2013 by the state Senate's Governance and Finance Committee. AB 210 passed 5 to 2 and will next be considered by the full Senate.

"It's obvious that our aging infrastructure is in need of repair," Wieckowski said. "This bill will enable these two counties to reach out to their residents and develop plans that reduce congestion, improve our roads and provide transportation alternatives. With the voters' support, we can make the upgrades that are critical to the East Bay region."

AB 210 would authorize the counties to exceed the 2 percent local sales tax cap if voters approve a transportation ballot measure by Dec. 31, 2020. The two counties cannot put a measure on the ballot that would exceed the limit without first getting an exemption from the state Legislature.

The American Society of Civil Engineers in its Report Card on America's Infrastructure gave California a C- for the quality of its transportation infrastructure. Over the next three decades, California counties are projected to pump $95 billion into their aging transportation systems.

The Contra Costa County Transportation Authority, Alameda County Transportation Commission, Metropolitan Transportation Commission, AC Transit, Livermore Amador Valley Transit Authority and East Bay Regional Park District are among the supporters of AB 210.

Assemblymember Wieckowski represents the 25th Assembly District, which includes parts of Fremont and San Jose, and all of Newark, Milpitas and Santa Clara.

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