SANDAG’s “Bold New Transportation Vision” Not Sitting Well With Some Supervisors

By Matt Adams

SANDAG, the regional planning agency, revealed its new transportation proposal that shifts funding priorities from roads and highways to almost exclusively transit alternatives.  The five-point plan includes more high capacity transit routes, dozens of transit hubs and tunnels for Del Mar and Coronado.  The move would be a fundamental shift from the 2004  voter approved Transnet Sales Tax Extension that essentially split funding for the next 40 years between local streets and roads, highways, and transit .  The plan would require SANDAG to scrap the project list in exchange for the new transit focused vision.

While hailed by most elected officials at the Friday meeting some, including Supervisor Jim Desmond, expressed serious concerns over dismissing the 2004 Transnet Sales Tax Extension project list that was approved by nearly 70% of the voters.  The freshman Supervisor said SANDAG’s must honor the will of the voters and preserve funding for several highway and road projects that were part of the Sales Tax Extension. The Board of Supervisors will consider staking out a formal position when it convenes Tuesday. Desmond and Supervisor Kristin Gaspar have penned a Board Letter asking the county to oppose any modification to the Transnet Ordinance and urged SANDAG to pursue new funding sources for projects not listed in the 2004 Transnet Extension Ordinance.