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By Mayor Mike Mendez
NORWALK — How can you vote on something that costs money, when you don’t know how much money it will cost?
That was the question in court today, regarding Measure M, the L.A. County Transportation Authority’s sales tax measure on the November ballot.
The ballot label — the short, official description of Measure M that every voter will see – should explain how the money will be spent, which it does – and how much money the tax will be, which it does not.
Today’s court ruling that the MTA is not legally obligated to put the annual cost of Measure M in the ballot label for Measure M, does not prevent MTA from doing what is right. MTA should provide the community information on the $860 million annual cost of this new transportation tax, and the fact the legacy of Measure M is a permanent one cent increase in the sales tax.
We will also work to ensure that voters know that while Measure M would fund a wide range of transportation projects, key projects in our communities will not be completed for decades, while projects in more affluent parts of the county get a higher priority.
That means long awaited improvements on the 5, the 710, the South Bay Curve – the previously promised transit line from Artesia and the Orange County line, to downtown L.A. – the extension of trolley service to Torrance – all of these are decades away under Measure M’s priorities.
Voters should be provided more information regarding Measure M before they make a decision, and that includes knowing how much this new sales tax will cost each year, as well as a complete picture of what Measure M will do, and when.
More information on Measure M is available at gatewaycog.org/MeasureM.
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