The MTA Board of Directors voted to place a sales tax increase on the November ballot in order to pay for Westside transit projects. Board Members Los Angeles County Supervisor Mike Antonovich and Duarte City Councilman John Fasana were the only two members to vote against the tax. County Supervisor Gloria Molina abstained and County Supervisor Don Knabe was absent. The measure must now receive the approval of the County Board of Supervisors and then a 2/3 vote Countywide in order to go into effect. Significant opposition to the tax - which primarily benefits only West Los Angeles neighborhoods - exists in eastern and northern cities in the County which could derail passage. Additionally, a number of transit activists were either disappointed at items not included in the measure or were outright opposed to the spending plans.
City officials are afraid the state may turn to tapping into local funds to help balance the state budget. The City of Los Angeles is heavily lobbying against such a move considering the fiscal instability of the City at present. However, representatives from the Govenor's office as well as legislative leaders say there are no plans to go after local funds at present. But don't expect the Mayor won't use this as another reason to raise local taxes, uh, fees.
If you're looking for something fun to do next Tuesday in Boyle Heights, you can attend Councilman Jose Huizar's town hall meeting featuring the Councilmember and various City department heads. 6:00 p.m.., Tuesday, July 29th at The Puente Learning Center in Boyle Heights.