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California Proposition 6: Gas and Vehicle Taxes

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Proposition 6 is all about repealing the new gas tax, and making it harder to raise gas taxes in the future.

Here’s a little background. Last year, the state legislature passed a massive transportation bill. It raised about 5 billion dollars a year for transportation projects. And it’s paid for by an increase in prices at the pump, and other vehicle-related fees. You could look at it as an infrastructure plan, or you could look at it as a tax increase.

In any case, it’s been highly controversial. Democrats narrowly squeaked it through the legislature. Afterwards, voters in the Orange County area were so upset, that they recalled a Democratic representative who had voted for the bill.

So now there’s this measure on the ballot - Proposition 6 - that would repeal the infrastructure plan and all the taxes that go with it. That’s the part of the initiative that’s getting the most attention.

But prop six would actually go even further. It would amend the state constitution to require that any new fuel taxes and vehicle fees would have to be approved by voters - in addition to the governor and the two-thirds of the legislature, who already need to sign off on such things.

Both Democrats and Repulicans say that the proposition is partially a tactic to encourage Republican turnout in this election. GOP groups have raised more than 3 million dollars for the repeal campaign.

But they’re far out-stripped by opponents of Proposition 6: Construction industry groups, labor groups, and Democratic groups that have raised over 26 million dollars.

So. If you don’t like the gas tax, or don’t want gas taxes in the future, vote yes on Proposition 6 if you want to keep existing funding for roads and transit, then vote no on Proposition 6.

And, if you’re not into multi-million dollar ballot proposition fights, well, then maybe you should get out of California.