Mobility 21 Summit Addresses Transportation Infrastructure Progress at Risk

Potential Repeal of SB 1 Puts Critical Transportation Funding at Risk

LOS ANGELES–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#mobility21–National infrastructure experts joined forces today at the Mobility 21
Summit to highlight the risks and challenges to our transportation
infrastructure due to uncertain state and federal funding sources and a
multitude of regulatory constraints. Innovative transportation solutions
and strategies from around the globe were presented to address these
challenges and provide transformative solutions for Southern
California’s traveling public.

The largest one-day transportation event in the state, the 17th
annual Mobility 21 Southern California Transportation Summit attracted
more than 1,300 transportation, business and elected leaders. Experts
from a broad spectrum of backgrounds addressed the significant
challenges facing Southern California’s transportation infrastructure.
This year’s conference highlighted California’s position and ability to
lead the nation and world as a “transportation center of excellence”
despite state funding uncertainties.

Critical funding at risk is Senate Bill 1 (SB 1), commonly referred to
as the Gas Tax, which was approved by California’s Legislature and the
Governor in April 2017. The Gas Tax generates funds for California’s
transportation infrastructure through increased gasoline taxes and
annual vehicle fees. It began providing funds to cities and counties in
November 2017 for: maintenance and rehabilitation; safety improvements
on state highways, local streets, roads and bridges; and for improving
the state’s trade corridors, transit and active transportation
facilities. In June 2018, California voters approved Proposition 69,
which amended the State Constitution to prevent SB 1 funds from being
diverted or borrowed for other purposes. The rapid pace of progress in
building those improvements could be eliminated by the looming
Proposition 6 Gas Tax repeal measure that is planned for the November
2018 election ballot.

“Californians and their families deserve the safer streets and highways,
more affordable transportation, and good-paying careers that come with
investing in the future of our infrastructure,” said Los Angeles Mayor
Eric Garcetti. “California stands to lose billions in critical funding
if SB 1 is repealed, which would devastate our ability to fix our roads
and create more sustainable transit — making traffic worse, polluting
our air, and eliminating thousands of good jobs that build up our middle
class.”

Los Angeles County, for example, will receive $1 billion per year from
the state gas tax and fees authorized by SB 1 to help galvanize its
predominantly locally funded transportation projects, essentially adding
the “jet fuel” to get many of these projects built as quickly as
possible to help relieve congestion, improve air quality and create jobs.

“Metro is now leading a transportation renaissance in L.A. County thanks
to our own locally funded Measure M and R programs,” said Metro CEO
Phillip A. Washington and Mobility 21 Board Member. “Our programs also
depend on significant funding participation from both the state and
federal governments. These SB 1 funds will help us leverage our local
funding commitments to fully and quickly implement our region’s most
critically needed transportation improvements.”

“Southern California is in the midst of major investment in our
transportation infrastructure – from bridges and highways, to transit
lines and air and seaport modernization,” said Maria Salinas, President
& CEO of Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce and Mobility 21 Board
Member. “Mobility 21 has championed the importance of maintaining and
building out our system as the foundation to our region’s economic
health and mobility. Last year’s Road Repair & Accountability Act has
already jumpstarted nearly 6,500 projects throughout the state; the
passage of Proposition 6 this November would be devastating not just to
our infrastructure, but our safety and competitiveness as the
fifth largest economy in the world.”

During an exclusive media availability at the Summit with Los Angeles
Mayor Eric Garcetti and transportation leaders, transportation projects
considered vital to California’s mobility were highlighted for being
at-risk if Proposition 6 passes. These include major improvements and
safety enhancements to roads, public transit, active transportation
networks, highways and bridges. The Summit also discussed key
technological advances including autonomous transportation systems,
hyperloop travel, microtransit and big data, all of which could be
significantly impacted should state funding stall.

“For the first time in a generation, California is investing in its
roads, bridges and highways thanks to the $5.4 billion in annual SB 1
revenues,” said Lucy Dunn, Commissioner, California Transportation
Commission, President & CEO, Orange county Business Council and Board
Member, Mobility 21. “Right now, 6,500 roadway maintenance and bridge
repair projects throughout the state are underway, representing more
than $183 billion in economic investment. It’s important that we
preserve these funding sources so that California’s economy remains on
the highway and not in a ditch.”

“After decades of under-funding our transportation system, we finally
have a path forward,” said California State Transportation Agency
Secretary Brian Annis. “For the past year, cities, counties, transit
agencies and the state have been hard at work Rebuilding California.
Critical safety and rehabilitation projects are well underway; however,
without necessary funding generated by SB 1, roughly half of the
projects would be cut, significantly delayed or downsized.”

Mobility 21 presented awards to several transportation leaders for their
efforts to keep the region moving:

  • Lifetime Achievement Award:

    • Hon. John Tavaglione, Supervisor, County of Riverside
    • Gary Toebben, Former President & CEO, Los Angeles Area Chamber of
      Commerce
  • Public Sector Leader of the Year:

    • Susan Bransen, Executive Director, California Transportation
      Commission
  • Private Sector Leader of the Year:

    • ACS Infrastructure Development, Inc.

For more information about the conference, visit the event website: http://mobility21.com/2018summit/agenda/

Contacts

Mobility 21
Kristin Slocum
Director of Operations and
Communications
kslocum@mobility21.com
949.375.4523

leverton

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