And that coalition is Move LA, according to the Globe and Mail! Denny Zane told the reporter Frances Bula that while a sales tax is not the ideal way to pay for transit, it is the most politically saleable, as was evidenced by polling done before the decision was made to put the Measure R half-cent sales tax for transportation on the LA County ballot in 2008. Denny added that a vehicle levy would have made more sense by making it more expensive to drive and thereby changing the choices people would make, but that polling showed that people really didn’t like vehicle fees.
“There wasn’t clear evidence why,” Denny said. “The only thing we could conclude was that it’s paid in one lump sum, while the sales tax is paid in small increments. Our key criteria [when the referendum was being planned] was what would raise enough money to matter and [what was] politically viability. The sales tax scored high on both.”
The Globe and Mail story said that Move LA has become a model for other cities in Canada and the United States, especially Vancouver as it braces for its own transit referendum in March. The Globe and Mail is Canada’s largest national newspaper.