County ballot measures appear headed to passage

Katharine Lotze/Signal
    Los Angeles County voters appeared give a double thumbs-up Tuesday night to the two measures on the county’s ballot. Voters were asked to vote on Measure M (transportation) and Measure A (parks). With more than 52 percent of the votes counted, Measure M was winning with 827,620 “yes” votes to 372,012 “no” votes. Meanwhile, Measure A was passing with 863,549 “yes” votes to 328,554 “no” votes. Measure M proposed to raise the county’s sale tax by one half-cent in order to fund a variety of public transportation projects including new light rail and bus lines, as well as road and street improvements. The previously passed Measure R – already addresses those issues, and this would add onto that earlier half-cent tax measure. Significantly, an expiration date was not attached to this measure which means it could only be rescinded by another vote. Reversing it would need to pass by a two-thirds majority. What this means for residents of the Santa Clarita Valley is funding for Interstate-5 capacity improvements. It also means the city of Santa Clarita gets $3 million for local roads and $2.6 million a year for bus operations. For SCV Metrolink commuters,  Measure M means $1.2 billion set aside for improvements made to the train service over the next 40 years. The other county measure on the ballot – Measure A is all about generating money for parks. It’s called the “Safe, Clean Neighborhood Parks & Beaches’’ proposal and it would generate $94.5 million a year to fund new parks and spruce up existing ones. It also guaranteed a continuous revenue stream for parks by not “sunsetting,” or expiring. It would apply to both county and city parks in Santa Clarita.

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