Local and State Policy Platform - Transportation
There have been many recent improvements to our transportation infrastructure and there is still critical work to be done. Investment in our transportation systems are critical for the health and growth of our economy. Investments in local road repair and maintenance improve safety and movement of traffic, improving the travel experience for locals and visitors alike. We support transportation policies and funding that increase mobility, relieve congestion and expand alternative commute options. We support improved collaboration between agencies to improve the overall transportation system including connectors between different modes of public transportation.
We support the expansion of flights and destinations for, along with the modernization and terminal expansion of the Charles M. Schulz – Sonoma County Airport. With each new route, our airport estimates an average of $23 million in economic value including 70 jobs in our community. In addition, connecting to new destinations enhances our ability to attract new employers and bolster our tourism industry.
We support reconstruction of highway 37 to withstand sea level rise and storm surges, to relieve congestion and to improve safety. Growing housing demand has increased this priority as a local workforce issue. Average annual daily trips are projected to increase from 45,000 in 2013 to 58,000 by 2040. We would support alternative financing and project delivery methods, including public-private partnerships to address this crucial infrastructure need.
We support the extension of Measure M, the Traffic Relief Act that provides a quarter-cent county sales tax for local transportation improvements. In the last decade, Measure M has attracted $7 state and federal funding for every dollar of local money raised. An extension of Measure M, with a dedicated spending plan to repair both city and county roadways, would help solve this longstanding problem with no increase in the existing tax rate. An extension of Measure M would ensure crucial city and county road repairs and expand alternative commute options with no increase in the existing tax rate.
We believe that SMART has an important role to play in the future of transportation in the North Bay. With our support of Measure I, the SMART Train Sales Tax Extension, we are committed to advocate for increased transparency and fiscal responsibility going forward, areas of serious concern in SMART’s operations to date and which must be embraced by SMART leadership. We will advocate for resources to fund final mile gaps and needed expansion, not only North/South but also East to major metropolitan connectors.