Because of Beall’s SB 1, California will invest an additional $5.4 billion annually in road, freeway, bridge and transit projects – creating tens of thousands of construction jobs, lowering commute times and making our roads safer. The plan includes accountability measures to ensure the funding cannot be spent on anything but transportation. He also passed legislation, SB 595 that offers voters a regional vision of coordinated projects to pay for bridge safety improvements and provide $375 million for the BART-to-San Jose extension.
To halt and reverse the deterioration of California’s roads and keep its economy rolling, Beall introduced and passed SB 1 to increase road maintenance funding by $5.4 billion annually, averting a financial catastrophe. This investment will make roads safer and smoother while creating over 150,000 jobs.
SB 1 mandates that Caltrans make a concerted effort to reach out to disadvantaged business enterprises. Signed into law.
The revenue will be used for:
State Highway Repair – More than $1.1 billion annually to repair and maintain the state highway system.
Local Road Repair – More than $1.1 billion annually to cities to repair their streets and roads.
Bridge and Culvert Repair -- $400 million annually to repair and maintain this essential state transportation infrastructure.
Congested Corridors -- $250 million annually to reduce congestion along our most congested corridors, such as Highway 101.
Transit Assistance – Nearly $700 million annually to repair and improve public transportation systems, such as the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority system.
Active Transportation -- $100 million annually to support pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly projects on streets and roads.
Freeway Service Patrols – An additional $25 million annually to supplement the FSP program which quickly removes disabled vehicles thereby reducing congestion.
Workforce Development -- $25 million to promote pre-apprenticeship training programs.
Research -- $7 million annually to fund research at San Jose State and several University of California campuses to make our transportation system more efficient, less expensive, and more durable.
Through SB 1, San Jose State University and Mineta Transportation Institute were designated as the lead center by the California State University system to guide transportation research at sister campuses. SJSU will administer $2 million in SB 1 funding and MTI will select the best research proposals by examining their academic merit and scientific rigor.
Inspector General – Establishes a Caltrans Inspector General to ensure that the new funding is spent efficiently and effectively.
These programs will be funded by small increases in gas and diesel taxes, and an annual per-vehicle fee. In all, the majority of motorists will pay $10 or less per month.
Beall offered a traffic-congestion solution for Bay Area drivers by passing SB 595, allowing the Bay Area Toll Authority to place a regional ballot measure in nine counties. The proposal would fund a comprehensive traffic relief plan comprised of over 30 projects aimed at reducing commute times. Among the projects:
BART to San Jose Phase 2 — Funding to extend BART to San Jose and Santa Clara. $375 million.
San Jose Diridon Station – Funding to expand the station to accommodate train service, future BART and high-speed rail service, light rail and buses. $100 million.
Eastridge to BART Regional Connector -- Extend Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority light rail from the Alum Rock station to the Eastridge Transit Center. $130 million.
BART Transbay Rail Crossing – Funding for engineering, design work, environmental review for a second bay crossing. $50 million.
Increasing BART’s fleet – Funding for the purchase of new rail cars to expand ridership capacity per train and improve service reliability, $500 million.
Together, Senator Beall’s transportation infrastructure bills are capable of generating 251,000 jobs.
Beall also took action to protect subcontracted workers from fraud by voting for legislation requiring general contractors to cover any unpaid wages owed to them. AB 1701 (Thurmond), signed.
Combatting the proliferation of hazardous litter along Silicon Valley freeways, Beall obtained $4.9 million in state funding to augment the maintenance/trash removal budget for local highways. Nearly $800,000 was designated for the hiring of San Jose Conservation Corps workers and nearly $3 million was earmarked to hire 450 people released on probation to provide them with transitional employment, life skills education, job readiness and job placement services.
Enabling the city of San Jose to develop a multimodal transportation improvement plan for east side residents, Beall facilitated the approval of a $467,438 Caltrans planning grant,
Successfully advocated to make local freeways safer, Beall obtained $1.5 million in reinforced fencing by Caltrans at several locations: Meridian and Highway 85; S. Fifth Street cul-de-sac and S. Third Street intersection from southbound Interstate 280; I-280 path extending from northbound I-280, including the McLaughlin Avenue on-ramp to the Macredes Avenue cul-de-sac.
Senator Beall’s work in transportation extended far beyond his own legislation. As Chairman of the Senate Transportation and Housing Committee, he considered over 200 bills related to transportation and housing issues. Among the bills Senator Beall’s committee approved were:
SB 158 (Monning) strengthens training requirements for new truck drivers, making the roads safer for everyone.
SB 309 (Jackson) approves a reproductive freedom license plate. Proceeds will support family planning.
SB 673 (Newman) allows proceeds from the sale of the Pet Lovers license plate to fund spay and neuter programs.
SCR 8 (Portantino) names a portion of State Route 134 in Los Angeles County after President Obama.
AB 179 (Cervantes) restructures the qualifications of appointees the California Transportation Commission to increase diversity by requiring two commissioners to have experience working directly with disadvantaged communities; two other commissioners to have expertise in sustainable transportation; one commissioner to have training and experience in public health; and one to have expertise on climate change issues.
AB 530 (Low) streamlines regulations for the taxi industry, allowing them to compete more fairly with Uber and Lyft.
Supported AB 851 to expand the list of public works projects for which a local agency may utilize the design-build procurement process to reduce risks, costs, and save time by authorizing a single point of responsibility.
Supported SB 703, empowering Santa Clara County voters to decide whether to raise funds for much-needed local services.