On May 30, 2023, ECOS submitted a letter of support for AB 1052, Sacramento Regional Transit District’s Ballot Authority.
Below is the text of our letter.
On behalf of the Environmental Council of Sacramento (ECOS), we thank you for authoring AB 1052 and express our support for the bill as it moves through the legislative process.
Sacramento Regional Transit (SacRT) continues to face reduced ridership and higher costs originally driven by the COVID-19 pandemic. Some of those negative impacts continue today, along with the lasting societal changes the pandemic caused.
We strongly believe that a robust, efficient, and cost-effective SacRT transit system benefits all people within its service area, but some projects provide more benefits to a subset of the residents living within that service area. However, if SacRT wants to place a measure on the ballot to increase a sales or use tax, or property tax, that measure must cover its entire service area.
In the wake of these changes and the ongoing financial uncertainty, AB 1052 would give SacRT the authority to ask a subset of its service area to support paying for projects that would more directly benefit that area. Many much-needed community and SacRT projects are more localized, impacting and delivering the most benefits to a geographically specific region as opposed to the entire widespread, 440-square mile SacRT service area.
We know that efficient public transit provides tremendous regional benefits. SacRT services reduce traffic, improve air quality, boost regional economic growth, create jobs, and connect neighborhoods. It also offers residents a cost-effective way to get to and from school, work, medical appointments, and essential services. In addition, it provides mobility equity, by providing greater access to opportunities and services so all members of our community can connect, thrive, and prosper.
ECOS was founded in 1971 as a visionary and action-oriented coalition for our region.
Today the organizational and individual members of ECOS work to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve air quality, promote smart growth land use and transportation principles, promote equity in housing, promote sustainable regional water supply for all users, public health and opportunities, and promote regional habitat conservation.
We are pleased to offer our support for AB 1052 and I thank you again for carrying the bill.