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ATSSA’s California chapter (CAL-ATSSA) advocates to protect new roadway safety funding
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ATSSA’s California chapter (CAL-ATSSA) advocates to protect new roadway safety funding

ATSSA’s Government Relations team and the CAL-ATSSA chapter are working together to advocate against the repeal of a recently passed state gas tax increase that funds roadway infrastructure maintenance and repair.

The bill, Senate Bill 1 (SB1), also known as the “Road Repair and Accountability Act” was introduced by State Senator Jim Beall and passed in the spring of 2017. SB1 took effect in November 2017 and authorizes an increased gasoline and diesel tax, as well as a transportation investment fee and a fee on zero emission vehicles. These taxes and fees will generate approximately $5 billion annually in new revenue, which would pay for maintenance and repair of California’s roadways, bridges, and related infrastructure.

Although the bill has passed and been enacted, it still faces opposition, and a repeal measure for the bill, Proposition 6 (Prop 6), is on the state ballot this November. If repealed, the measure would eliminate necessary funding for more than 6,500 bridge, roadway safety, transportation, and public transit improvement projects in California.

ATSSA and ATSSA chapters support the increase in user-fees outlined in the legislation, to fund roadways and roadway safety infrastructure, and have joined the Coalition to Protect Local Transportation Improvements, a campaign effort known as “No on Prop 6”.

“The passage of SB1 last year was a major win for our industry, so we must do what’s necessary to protect these new transportation funds. If SB 1 were to be repealed in November, it could set a negative precedent for other states who have recently raised or want to raise their state gas tax,” said President of CAL-ATSSA William Kearny. “Being a part of this coalition gives ATSSA and our member companies a bigger, more unified voice to help combat the repeal of SB1.”

This effort in California is one of many opportunities ATSSA members across the country have to get involved in advocating for policies and funding that advance roadway safety. ATSSA offers support to its chapters to host advocacy days at state capitols across the country, where ATSSA members can meet with elected representatives and share their knowledge and stories about roadway safety infrastructure.

“The ATSSA state government relations program provides its members an opportunity to engage with state law makers on issues that matter to them. CAL-ATSSA’s engagement on SB1 over the past year is a perfect example of how the program can provide a platform for an ATSSA chapter to make their voice heard and participate in the law making process,” said ATSSA Director of State Government Relations Ashley Wieland.

ATSSA President & CEO Roger Wentz also recently commented on SB 1, voicing ATSSA’s commitment to the legislation and the value of investing in roadway safety infrastructure.

To learn more about ATSSA’s advocacy efforts, visit http://www.atssa.com/GovernmentRelations.

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