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League of Women Voters of California Education Fund
Sales Tax Increase for Transportation
County of Ventura
Sales tax increase to allow the Ventura County Transportation Commission to improve and maintain streets, highways and public transportation - 2/3 Majority Approval Required
115,251 / 41.7% Yes votes ...... 160,968 / 58.3% No votes
Index of all Measures
|Results as of Dec 15 1:40pm, 100.0% of Precincts Reporting (541/541)|
|Information shown below: Impartial Analysis | Full Text|
Shall the ordinance establishing a one half percent (0.5%) countywide sales tax increase and spending limit in Ventura County to: maintain local streets and fix potholes; reduce traffic congestion, widen and improve safety on highways 101, 118, 126 and 23; expand Metrolink and upgrade railroad crossings; expand bus services and lower senior and disabled fares; improve access to CSUCI; and construct bicycle paths become effective and operative?
The ordinance would impose a retail sales and use tax of one-half of one percent (0.5%) throughout Ventura County, which would remain in effect for thirty (30) years. The tax would be in addition to any existing or future state sales tax. Revenues of the tax imposed by this ordinance would be dedicated exclusively for transportation purposes in Ventura County, including acquisition, construction and maintenance of streets, roads, highways and public transit. Revenues of the tax would be used to fund transportation projects and programs set forth in the Ventura County Transportation Commission Expenditure Plan. The Expenditure Plan includes such projects as: reducing congestion, improving safety and widening Highways 101, 23, 118 and 126; maintaining local streets and county roads, and creating safe access to California State University at Channel Islands; coordinating traffic signals; expanding Metrolink rail services and improving railroad crossings; expanding local ! bus service and guaranteeing lower fares for senior citizens and persons with disabilities; and constructing truck weigh stations and bicycle paths. The ordinance would allow the Commission to amend the Expenditure Plan annually to account for additional funds, unexpected revenues and unforeseen circumstances.
The ordinance would require that all revenues of the tax less required State Board of Equalization costs and administrative costs, which the ordinance would cap at one percent (1%) of the annual revenues, be allocated annually by the Commission based on the following formula: forty percent (40%) to road and highway projects, twenty percent (20%) to public transit, bicycle and pedestrian projects and forty percent (40%) returned to the cities and county, on a per capita basis, for local street purposes. The revenues provided by the ordinance are intended to supplement, not replace, existing public and private funding for transportation improvements and programs. To that end, the ordinance would require local jurisdictions to certify that they are spending all local transportation funding for transportation purposes and to spend the revenue that they receive within three years of receipt.
The ordinance would also authorize the Commission to borrow money to accelerate transportation projects by issuing bonds which would be repaid with future tax revenues. The total principal amount of such debt outstanding at any one time could not exceed five hundred million dollars ($500 million). The ordinance also provides for an annual spending limit of four hundred million dollars ($400 million).
If the measure is approved, it will become operative upon the initiation of revenue collection, which the Commission anticipates will be April 1, 2005.
The above statement is an impartial analysis of Measure B. If you want a copy of the measure, please call the Elections Official's office at (805) 654-2781 and a copy will be mailed at no cost to you.
|Full Text of Measure B|
Maintenance and repair of existing roadways in Ventura County and improvements to relieve congestion cannot be accomplished with available funds. Without additional funds, the system will bog down and pavement will continue to crumble into permanent disrepair. State highway funds are on hold again and needed projects are being delayed. Local governments must either generate revenues to expand our system and maintain our investments or watch the system collapse and endanger the health, welfare and safety of Ventura County residents.
The establishment of a one-half percent sales tax for transportation to supplement traditional revenues and revenues to be generated through locally-adopted developer fees and assessment districts is the only way we can be sure the transportation system will serve the current and future travel needs in Ventura County. This measure is consistent with SOAR and the General Plans of the cities in Ventura County and is designed to help maintain our quality of life. It will guarantee reduced fares for seniors and persons with disabilities and assure the continuation of Metrolink and other rail and bus services.
The Ventura County Transportation Commission will continue to seek maximum funding for transportation improvements through State and Federal programs. The Commission will not provide sales tax revenues to any city or to the County unless the revenues currently used by that agency for transportation are continued to be used for transportation purposes. These funds may only be used for transportation purposes in Ventura County and cannot be diverted by the State or other governmental agencies for another purpose.
The Ventura County Transportation Commission ordains as follows:
SECTION 1. SUMMARY. This ordinance shall be known and may be cited as the Ventura County Maintain Local Streets and Prevent Worse Traffic Congestion Expenditure Plan. The Project Expenditure Plan is set forth in Section 6 herein. This ordinance provides for the implementation of the Ventura County Transportation Commission Maintain Local Streets and Prevent Worse Traffic Congestion Expenditure Plan. This commitment to improve the quality of life in Ventura County shall be funded by a one-half of one percent transactions and use tax established for thirty years. The revenues shall be deposited in a special fund and used solely for transportation projects and programs within Ventura County. The specific projects and programs are identified in the Expenditure Plan, Section 6, of this ordinance.
SECTION 2. DEFINITIONS.
1. Expenditure Plan. "The Expenditure Plan" means the Ventura County Transportation Commission Expenditure Plan shown in Section 6 of this Ordinance.
2. "County" means the Ventura County.
3. "Commission" means the Ventura County Transportation Commission as set forth in Section 130054.1 of the Public Utilities Code.
SECTION 3. AUTHORITY. This Ordinance is enacted, in part, pursuant to the provisions of Division 19 of the Public Utilities Code (commencing with Code Section 180000) of the Public Utilities Code, and Section 7252.16 of the Revenue and Taxation Code.
SECTION 4. IMPOSITION OF TRANSACTIONS AND USE TAX. In addition to any other taxes authorized by law, there is hereby imposed in the incorporated and unincorporated territory of the County of Ventura, in accordance with provisions of Part 1.6 (commencing with Section 7251) of Division 2 of the Revenue and taxation Code which provisions are adopted by reference and Division 19 of the Public Utilities Code (commencing with Code Section 180000), a retail transactions and use tax at the rate of one-half of one percent for thirty years in addition to any existing or future authorized state or local transactions and use tax.
SECTION 5. PROJECT EXPENDITURE PLAN PURPOSES. These dedicated funds may only be used for transportation purposes in Ventura County including the administration of Division 25, including legal actions related thereto, the construction, capital, acquisition, maintenance and operation of streets, roads, highways, including state highways and public transit and for related purposes. These purposes include expenditures for the planning, environmental reviews, engineering, design and related right-of-way acquisition.
SECTION 6. PROJECT EXPENDITURE PLAN. The revenues received by the Ventura County Transportation Commission from this ordinance (estimated to be $50 million per year, or $1.5 billion over thirty years), after deduction of the required Board of Equalization costs for performing the functions specified in Section 180204 of the Public Utilities Codes, and for the administration of the Ventura County Half Cent Sales Tax, in an amount not to exceed one percent (1%), shall be used for transportation projects and programs as set forth in this Expenditure Plan. The Commission shall allocate annually the remaining Retail Tax Revenues 40% to Road and Highway projects, 20% to Transit, Rail, Bicycle and Pedestrian projects and 40% returned to the cities and the county, on a per capita basis, for local street purposes. A summary of the major projects and programs is provided as follows:
SECTION 8. MAINTENANCE OF EFFORT. It is the intent of the Commission that revenues provided from this Ordinance be used to supplement existing revenues being used for transportation improvements and programs and shall not be used to replace existing revenues.
Local jurisdictions shall be required to certify that they are spending all local transportation funding for transportation purposes. All eligible local agencies will be required to spend the revenue that they receive within three years of receipt. Unexpended funds, upon audit, must be returned to the Commission for reallocation.
No revenues shall be allocated for any state highway projects until the Commission has certified that Ventura County is receiving at least its County Minimum share of highway funds from the state. Part of the certification shall include a finding that the state has not reduced any state highway allocations to Ventura County as a result of the addition of any local revenues as provided herein. This certification shall be made biennially in the Regional Transportation Improvement Program.
SECTION 9. PRIVATE SECTOR FUNDING. Revenues provided from this Ordinance shall not be used to replace private developer funding which has been or will be committed for any project. Nothing in this ordinance shall be construed to preclude cities or the County from adopting or adjusting appropriate traffic mitigation fees within their respective jurisdictions.
SECTION 10. BONDING AUTHORITY. In order to accelerate the construction of needed transportation facility improvements, upon voter approval of the ordinance, the Commission shall have the authority to sell or issue, from time to time, on or before the collection of taxes, bonds or the evidence of indebtedness, including, but not limited to, capital appreciation bonds, in the aggregate principal amount at any one time outstanding of not to exceed $500 million, and to secure such indebtedness solely by way of future collection of taxes, for capital outlay expenditure for the purposes set forth in Section 5 hereof, including to carry out the projects described in the Expenditure Plan, Section 6. The Commission, in allocating the annual revenues from the Ordinance, shall meet all debt service requirements prior to allocating funds for other projects.
SECTION 11. LIMITATION OF ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSES. Revenues may be expended by the Commission for salaries, wages, benefits, overhead, auditing and those services including contractual services necessary to administer the Ordinance; however, in no case shall such expenditures exceed one percent (1%) of the annual revenues provided by the Ordinance. Costs of performing or contracting for project related work shall be paid from the revenues allocated to the appropriate purpose as set forth in Section 6 herein. An annual independent audit shall be conducted to assure that the revenues expended by the Commission under this section are necessary and reasonable in carrying out its responsibilities under the Ordinance.
SECTION 12. ESTABLISHMENT OF SEPARATE ACCOUNTS. Each agency receiving funds pursuant to Section 5 shall deposit said funds in a separate Transportation Improvement Account. Interest earned on funds allocated pursuant to this Ordinance shall be expended only for those purposes for which the funds were allocated or shall be returned to the Commission for reallocation. The Commission reserves the right to audit any such accounts.
SECTION 13. IMPLEMENTING ORDINANCES. Upon approval of this Ordinance by the voters the Commission shall adopt implementing ordinances and rules and take such other actions as may be necessary and appropriate to carry out its responsibilities.
SECTION 14. ANNUAL APPROPRIATIONS LIMIT. Article XIII (B) of the California Constitution requires the establishment of an annual appropriations limit for certain governmental entities. The maximum annual appropriations limit for the Commission has been established as $400 million in order to implement and deliver the program approved by the voters. The appropriations limit shall be subject to adjustment as provided by law. All expenditures of the transactions and use tax revenues imposed in Section 3 are subject to the appropriations limit of the Commission.
SECTION 15. EFFECTIVE AND OPERATIVE DATES. This Ordinance shall become effective only if a 2/3's majority of the electors voting on the Ordinance at the election held on November 2, 2004 vote to approve the Ordinance. If so approved, the provisions of this Ordinance shall become operative upon the initiation of revenue collection, anticipated to be on April 1, 2005.
SECTION 16. REQUEST FOR ELECTION. The Commission hereby requests the Ventura County Board of Supervisors to place this Ordinance before the voters for approval on the November 2, 2004 ballot.
The proposition to be placed on the ballot shall contain a summary of the transportation projects and programs and shall read substantially as follows:
Proposition "B" half-cent transportation sales tax.
To maintain streets and prevent worse traffic congestion, improve safety and air quality and match state and federal transportation grants, this measure authorizes a one-half cent sales tax to:
PASSED AND ADOPTED by the Ventura County Transportation Commission, this ___day of ______, 2004 by the following vote:
STATE OF CALIFORNIA )
COUNTY OF VENTURA )
I, Ginger Gherardi, the Executive Director of the Ventura County Transportation Commission, do hereby certify that the foregoing is a true copy of an Ordinance adopted by the Ventura County Transportation Commission on __________________________, 2004 at the date and by the vote stated above, which said Ordinance is on file in the Office of the Ventura County Transportation Commission
DATED: _______________________ _________________________