State Transit Funding
State of California has been a critical funding source for transit
agencies within the state. The people of California asserted in
several statewide ballot measures, from 1990's Proposition 116
to 2006's Proposition 1A, that the state may not use dedicated-transportation
program dollars for other programs. State assistance for public
transit was provided through what was called the Public Transportation
As the state has faced worse deficits in recent years, the state
Legislature has illegally transfered more and more transportation
funding to other programs. Finally, in February 2009, the state
eliminated the State Transit Assistance program outright. Several
agencies that had been dependent on state funding are slated to
cut up to one-third of all transit service. More than $5 billion
has been diverted from public transit in the past decade.
The Transit Coalition coordinates with other transportation
advocacy organizations to fight for to protect critical state
Court Rules State Raids of Transit Funds
Illegal- On June 30, 2009, the Third District Court
of Appeals ruled that the states raids of transit funds were in
violation of state law. The California Transit Association (CTA)
had filed the suit $1.19 billion in tranit funding diverted during
the 2007-2008 budget cycle. While the court cannot necessarily
order past years' transit funding restored, over $1 billion subject
to diversion in this year's budget negotiations must be returned
to transit agencies.
Read the full court decision here
and more details on the lawsuit here.
Victory For Transit Riders In California, But Will It Help Elsewhere?"
-- Article by David Peter Alan, Destination: Freedom,
July 13, 2009.
Wins Major Court Victory In California" -- Article by David
Peter Alan, Destination: Freedom, July 6, 2009.
cannot divert gas tax revenue from transit, court rules"
- Article by Gary Richards, San Jose Mercury News, July
Orders California to Stop Robbing Transit" - Article by
Damien Newton, Streetsblog Los Angeles, July 1, 2009
court rules that California officials have illegally used transportation
funds" - Article by Shane Goldmacher, Los Angeles Times
L.A. Now Blog, June 30, 2009