A Sacramento sales tax increase may be on the November 2020 ballot for local residents. The draft proposal, referred to as Measure A, intends to raise $8 billion over the next 40 years to bring improvements to issues like transportation, climate change, and even homelessness. For voters, these developments come at a cost. In order to raise the necessary funds to cover everything within the proposal, city and county leaders propose increasing the local sales tax a half a cent. If approved, the new tax would increase the total Sacramento sales tax to a total of 9 cents per dollar.
However, the likelihood of this proposal even being placed on the November 2020 ballot is beginning to look very slim. Measure A is simply a revamp of Measure B, which was placed on the November 2016 ballot and received 65% of the vote, just 2% under the required 67% to pass by state law. Additionally, the new tax would be 3rd active transportation related tax within the last two decades. Back in 2004, voters approved a 30-year Sacramento sales tax that increased sales tax by a half-cent. In 2018, California officials increased the state’s gas tax from 41.7 cents to 47.3 cents.
California sales tax issues will appear on a number of local ballots in the fall. Local advocates contend that another Sacramento sales tax hike is more than adequate coverage for the intended transportation projects. It is believed that the measure stands the greatest chance of receiving the required 67% by allocating the funds to what voters actually deem necessary for daily travel. Sacramento councilman Steve Cohn says he thinks the money would be better spent on car travel alternatives like light rail tracks and a downtown station. A recent poll showed that residents are more likely to support repairs and repaving of the streets. The Sacramento Transportation Authority will vote on a final project list which will then be presented to city councils for approval to be placed on the November 2020 ballot.
Have a question or comment? Contact Aaron Giles.