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California to Citizens: Do You Really Need Public Transit?

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The herculean effort to pass a budget in California continues on--the latest attempt included cutting public transit funding entirely, not just next year, but possibly forever, according to an editorial in the Los Angeles Times. In the latest budget battle, the Democrats suggested eliminating gas taxes and replacing them with a user fee 13 cents higher than the old gas tax. But the user fee could only be used spent on things that directly benefit those who pay the fee, i.e. roads for drivers. The transit agencies would get nothing. Governor Schwarzenegger vetoed that plan, but not because he wants to preserve transit (some think the veto was a face-saving move). So, now it looks like both Republicans and Democrats are anti-transit. Not good for a state with rampant pollution and congestion. [Los Angeles Times]