Thursday, January 18, 2007

Raising Kane II

An earlier post described the Kane County Board as a bunch of whiners. Despite Kane County's modest contribution of RTA sales tax revenue to the regional transit system, the county is served by multiple Metra lines plus local bus service. Nonetheless, the Kane County board members gave Moving Beyond Congestion leaders a hard time when they briefed the Board, complaining that Kane County is grossly under served by public transit.

Maybe the Kane County Board is starting to see the light. A recent news report (entitled "Kane Puts Priority on its Road Projects" BTW) indicates that the Board's Legislative Committee called "for a funding solution to the Regional Transportation Authority's strategic plan for the metropolitan area." (Also here.) Notice that the Committee did not oppose the Moving Beyond Congestion initiative.

A very interesting statement in the article is: "If a transit sale tax increase for the RTA is proposed, committee members said, the county should press for a fair return on service from Kane tax dollars." Note that the Board Committee did not reject outright the notion of an RTA sale tax increase in the collar counties. This suggests that the Moving Beyond Congestion proponents are successfully grooming suburban lawmakers to support--or at least not vociferously oppose--an increase in the RTA sales tax in the collar counties.

This could be a huge win if the RTA and the Moving Beyond Congestion proponents can push through a collar county tax increase for public transit without the good burghers descending on them with pitchforks, flaming torches and vats of tar.

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