Contact: Eric Young, SFCTA
415-522-4816 office, 415-306-4509 cell, email@example.com
To commemorate its 30th anniversary, the San Francisco County Transportation Authority unveiled ‘Sales Tax Stories’ from people across the city highlighting beneficial investments from the half-cent sales tax for transportation. The Transportation Authority has managed the voter-approved, half-cent sales tax since 1990, first through the Proposition B program, and then extended with the Proposition K program.
Go to sfcta.org/stories to read stories from transit riders, drivers, cyclists and pedestrians from all across the city about how the half-cent sales tax has improved their lives.
While all the stories are unique, a common theme that emerges is how the half-cent sales tax advances safety and connectivity benefitting the city’s economy, environment, and livability.
City voters first approved the half-cent sales tax, and the creation of the Transportation Authority, in 1989. In 1990, the first dollar flowed to the agency to administer the transportation sales tax program, which generated approximately $115 million annually before the pandemic.
“I would like to thank voters for their foresight in approving the half-cent sales tax for transportation,” said Transportation Authority Board Chair Aaron Peskin (District 3). “The Prop K program continues to be a vital source of investment to help us reach our safety, climate and equity goals.”
Indeed, the half-cent sales tax funds are increasingly necessary to advance projects because federal and state contributions have declined as an overall percentage of transportation funds over the years.
Since 1990, the Transportation Authority has directed more than $1.3 billion in half-cent sales tax funding citywide. On average, every dollar in half-cent sales tax funding leverages an additional $4-$7 from federal, state, or other sources.
“In these uncertain times, we are fortunate to have half-cent sales tax funds to support essential travel, reshape our streets and boost the city’s recovery,” said Tilly Chang, Transportation Authority Executive Director. “Each dollar invested keeps the city moving while maintaining transportation industry jobs.”
Investments funded by the half-cent sales tax have touched every neighborhood, supporting some efforts that transformed the city, such as creating The Embarcadero roadway, building Third Street Light Rail, and replacing Doyle Drive with the Presidio Parkway. It has also supported projects that were smaller but also made big differences in people’s lives, like curb ramps, protected bicycle lanes, and taxi rides home for essential workers.
Over the past 30 years, the half-cent sales tax program:
- Has led to smoother streets and signal upgrades through investments in street repaving and traffic management projects;
- Led to cleaner, safer, and more reliable transit through investments like transit priority lanes and buying new buses and light rail vehicles for Muni;
- Improved conditions for pedestrians and cyclists through sidewalk and bike lane improvements, curb bulbs and traffic calming; and
- Supported ongoing paratransit service, which is frequently used by our city’s seniors and persons with disabilities.
To learn more about the half-cent sales tax, visit the “Funding” section of the Transportation Authority website.
About the San Francisco County Transportation Authority (sfcta.org)
The San Francisco County Transportation Authority’s mission is to make travel safer, healthier, and easier for all. We plan, fund, and deliver local and regional projects to improve travel choices for residents, commuters, and visitors throughout the city. The Transportation Authority Board consists of the 11 members of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, who act as Transportation Authority Commissioners. Commissioner Aaron Peskin is Chair of the Board. Tilly Chang is the Transportation Authority’s Executive Director.