North Carolina Opens Up to Local-Option Sales Taxes

New funding capacity will allow for improved transit in the Triad and Triangle Metro Areas

Several metropolitan areas in North Carolina have been toying around with the idea of implementing local sales taxes for transportation for quite a while now, after Bush-era policies made it impossible to rely on federal funds to provide the majority of funds for transit capital projects in areas without a steady tax funding source. One problem, however, was that the state has not allowed the creation of such revenue sources outside of the state’s biggest city Charlotte, which approved a 1/2¢ dedicated transit sales tax in 1998. As a result, detailed plans to improve transit in both the Raleigh/Durham Triangle and the Greensboro/Winston-Salem Triad fell by the wayside.

Over the past few years, however, advocates in both areas have been pushing forward with new proposals for transit expansion, especially after the notable success of Charlotte’s LYNX light

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Transit in North Carolina's Triangle; CR in Québec

Today’s news updates:

Thanks to Streetsblog: an op-ed in the New York Times on transforming today’s car makers into “transport makers.”
Thanks to Greater Greater Washington: an editorial in the Washington Post in favor of the proposed Purple Line.

In North Carolina, there’s an increasing effort to sell transit alternatives in both the Research Triangle Area (Raleigh, Durham, Cary, and Chapel Hill) and in Charlotte, which recently completed its first light rail line. There’s been an effort over the past twenty-odd years to push for the development of regional rail, which I chronicled more extensively two years ago on another website. Back then in 2006, it seemed obvious that the federal government, then firmly in the hands of transit-hating Republicans, was not going to push for the funding of such a rail line. This seemed especially true since North Carolina’s own (and now defeated) Republican Senator Elizabeth Dole

Continue reading Transit in North Carolina's Triangle; CR in Québec »

The Site / The Fight

by Yonah Freemark

yfreemark (at) thetransportpolitic (dot) com

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