KC Light Rail

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3/8-cent, 15-year bus tax election ordinance passes unanimously

The full city council voted 12-0 today to approve the ordinance that puts the 3/8-cent "bus tax" renewal on the April 2008 ballot (with the smoking bans!). Mayor Funkhouser is out of town this week and was not present to vote.

Here's the updated ballot language:

Shall the City of Kansas City continue a city sales tax for the purposes of developing, operating, maintaining, equipping and improving a bus transit system by the Kansas City Area Transportation Authority for Kansas City, Missouri, as authorized by Section 94.605 of the Revised Statutes of Missouri at a rate of 3/8% for a period of 15 years?

____ YES ____ NO

Previously, the question did not specify buses ("transit" was the only identifying word) and there was much discussion about the duration of the tax (it would be the longest sales tax in the city's history… 12 years is the runner-up). The last tax had a 5-year sunset because MARC expected to launch regional tax votes to support SmartMoves.

6 Comments so far

  1. doinkman January 24th, 2008 11:23 pm

    15 years!?!? We should have personal jet packs by then. Just kidding. This is good news. Even the most optimistic light rail projections will need bus feeder routes.

  2. Joe Medley January 27th, 2008 10:10 pm

    Any readers on this blog interested in working on a get out the vote campaign to help this tax pass?

  3. northlander January 29th, 2008 5:43 pm

    Well Joe not many takers on the vote campaign. Maybe if the voters saw a master plan for buses it would help.

  4. Dave January 30th, 2008 9:55 am

    northlander has a point. i’m pretty sure that the ATA has BRT expansion plans using the existing revenue stream (troost, prospect, north oak), at least for operations. i would definitely play that up in the election so people feel like they’re still getting improvements even if a light rail vote doesn’t happen in 2008.

    oh yeah, and straighten the #39.

  5. Joe Medley January 30th, 2008 2:13 pm

    The tax is to continue service that was created by the first passage of the tax. If you want to see the plan, look at the evening and weekend bus schedules.

  6. Dave January 30th, 2008 3:16 pm

    so who will pay for the increased service levels on troost BRT? is there no added expense? FTA funding covers capital costs. i think it’s important to be clear about planned enhancements and whether they are covered by renewing this tax (especially for such a lengthy period).

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