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Vote ‘no’ on Regional Measure 3, which discriminates against East Bay residents

May 9, 2018

By Zelda Bronstein : berkeleyside – excerpt

RM3-300.jpg

Voters are being asked to increase bridge tolls by $3, supposedly to help relieve bottlenecks, improve BART and buses. But the measure will do little to relieve traffic congestion.

On the June 5 ballot, Regional Measure 3 asks voters in nine Bay Area counties to approve a $3 increase in tolls on all the region’s bridges but the Golden Gate “to reduce auto and truck traffic, relieve crowding on BART, unclog freeway bottlenecks and improve bus, ferry, BART and commuter rail service.” Its supporters, who include the Bay Area Council, the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, SPUR, Facebook, and YIMBY Action, call it “a bold, coordinated, region-wide traffic relief plan.”

Regional Measure 3 is bold all right: it’s a massive con that dedicates $4.5 billion to a hodgepodge of disconnected projects that will bring the Bay Area little traffic relief…

RM3 authorizes the Bay Area Toll Authority to raise bridge tolls more than $3, if the region’s cost of living goes up, or if BATA’s debt service requires higher tolls. As of last December, the agency’s portfolio included variable rate bonds worth $2.1 billion. In 2010, BATA paid a “wolf pack of banks” $104 million in bridge tolls after some of its credit swaps went bad…

The Official Statement that accompanied BATA/MTC’s issuance of bonds last summer included among risks to bondholder a decrease in tolls. In other words, the agencies’ bottom line depends on increasing automobile traffic. (They treat their creditors with candor—just the opposite of how they treat the voting public.) – Zelda

One of the problems with the regional quasi-government agencies being set up by the state of California, is that autonomous, and semi-autonomous entities rarely question their own decisions or do a proper cost analysis of anything they deem necesaary. Other people’s money  (OPM) is rarely treated with respect. Do us all a favor and Vote No on RM3.

If you haven’t signed the Stop SFMTA petition yet, please sign it and follow us on metermadness for updates on the exciting world of nonpartisan politics and grass roots actions relating to Transportation issues. We are following the SFMTA Ordinance through the legislative process.

RELATED:
Election 2018: Bay Area Voters to Consider $3 Bridge Toll Hike
http://transdef.org/ : TRANSDEF’s blog What’s Hot, is where we post recent developments
in High-Speed Rail and Bay Area Transportation. Check it out!
http://occupymtc.org : On the June ballot, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, MTC, is asking voters to approve Regional Measure 3, a $3 bridge toll increase, phased in over 6 years.

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