Local transportation officials have started outreach for a prospective tax on the November ballot to help fund local needs for roads, with an estimated $350 million needed over the next 22 years.
Transportation leaders are getting ahead of things this time around after voters rejected a 1 percent sales tax in 2016. The Council of San Benito County Governments released the following statement touching on the severity of those needs, and letting local organizations know the agency is looking to schedule meetings to get the word out and gather feedback:
San Benito County has a major transportation crisis. The Council of San Benito County Governments (COG), San Benito County’s regional transportation agency, is continuously evaluating vital county transportation needs and solutions for addressing those needs. In December 2017, COG board and staff members released a detailed 179-page Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) assessing the long-term future of San Benito County’s transportation throughout the year 2040. The full document is available on the COG’s website: http://www.sanbenitocog.org/.
Among the most significant needs identified during the development of the RTP, include local street and road repairs throughout the county.
San Benito County roads have experienced deterioration due to decades of underinvestment caused by funding deficiencies. This region is one of seven counties in the state to have an average pavement condition index of 46, well below “at risk,” and significantly worse than the statewide average. The San Benito County region has a combined pavement maintenance need of over $350 million over the next 22 years.
The COG board and staff members are currently engaging with community members on our transportation needs. We are scheduling conversations with community organizations and groups to discuss the transportation needs, possible solutions, and collect feedback. If you or your organization would like to schedule a meeting, please let COG know. The COG’s goal is to schedule as many in-person meetings as possible over the coming months. You can also fill out an online survey regarding county transportation needs or learn more by visiting http://sanbenitocog.org/sbcog/TransportationNeedsConversation/.
If you would like to ensure that your feedback is heard, or if you have any questions or comments regarding the COG’s process, please contact Mary Gilbert, COG Executive Director, by phone at (831) 637-7665 ext. 207 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Council of Governments was formed in 1973 by the Cities of Hollister and San Juan Bautista and the County of San Benito for the purpose of forming consensus on regional issues facing San Benito County. The Council continues this coordination today by providing a public forum for discussion at its monthly meetings. The Board of Directors are five elected officials appointed from the Hollister City Council, County Board of Supervisors and San Juan Bautista City Council.