CONTACT: Eric Young, SFCTA; 415-306-4509 cell; firstname.lastname@example.org
The San Francisco County Transportation Authority is seeking public input on a draft Expenditure Plan for the city’s half-cent sales tax for transportation. The Expenditure Plan determines how the Transportation Authority invests sales tax dollars to improve transportation across the city.
San Francisco voters will be asked as soon as June 2022 to approve a new Expenditure Plan and to continue the existing half-cent transportation sales tax in doing so.
The draft Expenditure Plan
The draft Expenditure Plan includes $2.4 billion in sales tax expenditures over 30 years. Working with partner agencies and the public, the Transportation Authority’s draft new expenditure plan includes:
- New funding set aside for community-based planning, targeting disadvantaged populations, to help identify future transportation investments that will advance equity in our city.
- A Safer Streets program, including pedestrian safety improvements, to help the city move toward its Vision Zero goals and be responsive to varied community needs.
- Investments in repaving the city’s streets.
- Funding to support Muni, BART and Caltrain transit infrastructure, maintenance and enhancements, consistent with the city’s Transit-First policy.
- Continued support for the SFMTA’s paratransit service, which provides critical connections for seniors and people with disabilities.
- An expanded transportation demand management program to help us get to an 80% sustainable mode share, consistent with the city’s Climate Action Plan.
There are several ways for the public to share thoughts on a new Expenditure Plan:
- Take a survey
- Attend a virtual town hall
- Have a project team member present to their community group
- Attend a meeting of the Expenditure Plan Advisory Committee
The half-cent sales tax
San Francisco voters first approved the creation of the half-cent sales tax for transportation in 1989. Voters approved the current Expenditure Plan and continued the sales tax in 2003. Since then, the Transportation Authority has directed more than $1.9 billion in half-cent sales tax funding citywide. On average, every $1.00 in half-cent sales tax funding attracts $4.00-$7.00 in additional funding from federal, state, or other sources.
The half-cent sales tax generates about $110 million per year (pre-pandemic) and helps fund transportation projects large and small across the city. Major capital investments have included the purchase of new Muni buses and light rail vehicles, Salesforce Transit Center, the electrification of Caltrain (under construction), Muni Central Subway (under construction), and reconstructing Doyle Drive, now known as Presidio Parkway.
It also makes a big difference in people’s lives through smaller projects like traffic calming, street repaving, paratransit service for seniors and persons with disabilities, protected bike lanes, new and upgraded signals, and, during the pandemic, taxi rides home for essential workers.
Why now for a new Expenditure Plan?
There are several reasons the Transportation Authority is working on a new Expenditure Plan for the half-cent transportation sales tax:
- All but one of the major capital projects in the current plan are complete or under construction. (See how investments have benefited San Franciscans over the years.)
- Sales tax provides an important source of funding for projects that can support the city’s economic recovery and maintain or create jobs.
- A new Expenditure Plan provides seed funding for planning and project development for a new generation of transportation priorities being developed through ConnectSF and the update of the countywide transportation plan known as the San Francisco Transportation Plan.
- Sales tax funds serve as the local match needed to secure competitive grants from federal, state, and regional sources.
The Expenditure Plan Advisory Committee, composed of 27 community, business, and advocacy representatives, will make a recommendation in December 2021 to the Transportation Authority Board for the final Expenditure Plan. Committee meetings are open to the public.
The Board of Supervisors is expected to vote by the end of February 2022 whether to place the new Expenditure Plan and half-cent sales tax continuation on the June 2022 ballot.
See more information at: sfcta.org/ExpenditurePlan
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 Board Members. Board Member Rafael Mandelman is Chair of the Board. Tilly Chang is the Transportation Authority’s Executive Director.