EVP Newsletter 10-25-16
Rural Road Repair?
Is it time to get together and formulate a sales tax measure for 2018 that will take care of our unincorporated roads in Sonoma County? Year in and year out, we hear about possible ballot measures to fix our roads. Sometimes, like Measure A, an honest effort to provide dollars to fix both County and City roads gets caught up in distrust, and a lack of “buy in” from the Cities.
I think it is time to consider the following:
A 10 year sales tax, only paid by those who live in the unincorporated areas of Sonoma County, ½ cent, and the proceeds will go 100% towards fixing the County roads based on miles per district. This would be a “specific tax” and would not be able to have funds diverted to public safety, bus routes, SMART, or pensions. To pass it would need 2/3 of the voters to say yes. If passed, it could generate $100 Million in 10 years and based on miles of roadway, the 5th District could see around $25 million extra for its road fix.
I would propose that this sales tax be in addition to what the County is already spending on road repair and bridge repair. In my humble opinion, this is an elegant fix to a problem that has been created over the past 25 to 30 years of neglect on the part of the Board of Supervisors. I will give the BOS credit for stepping up in the last few years and spending more than in the past two decades, but we need a major infusion of dollars and we are not soon going to get it from the State or Feds the way things are going.
This measure would solve the “stated” criteria for voters who soundly rejected Measure A. It is paid for by the people who use the roads, it has a definite “sunset” (end point), and it is ironclad as to what the money can be used for.
Thanks for all you do!
That’s All Folks
Measure J For Parks-
Although the ECA took no position on this sales tax measure, I wanted to supplement my usual “Soapbox” with my own personal viewpoint on this one. Keep in mind that only those taxpayers that live in the unincorporated areas of Sonoma County would be paying this tax, yet everyone would see the benefit of enhanced services and facilities at the regional parks of Sonoma County. My questions are:
- Why not have everyone pay for what everyone can use?
- Why not redirect some of the “Open Space” dollars so more of those funds can go to the Parks?
Obviously, I am not in favor, personally, of Measure J. Vote!
ECA Member Mike Cook of Firma Design Group is running for Rincon Valley Union School Board. If you live in that area, think about voting for a fellow ECA member!
Debris Boxes In Windsor:
There is an effort to tighten up the rules for debris hauling in Windsor. I know some of our member firms are on the approved list of debris box suppliers and haulers, but I also know there are many Contractor members who have the equipment to haul their own construction debris and those are the member firms that could be affected by new regulations being written/proposed in Windsor, If this is “YOU”, and you want more information, please call me. If you are interested in the Link on the Town of Windsor website, click here–
City of Healdsburg – Gary Plass, Mel Amato, David Hagele
City of Petaluma – Mike Healy, Gabe Kearney, Kathy Miller
City of Santa Rosa – Ernesto Olivares, Jack Tibbetts, Don Taylor, Brandi Asker
City of Sonoma – David Cook
Town of Windsor – Deb Fudge, Bruce Okrepkie
Santa Rosa School Board – Jenni Klose
Sonoma County Board of Education – Herman G. Hernandez
Sonoma County Junior College District Board of Trustees – Rick Call
Sonoma County Board of Supervisors, 5th District – Lynda Hopkins
Marin County Board of Supervisors, District 4 -Dominic Grossi