Jim Beall, California State Senator, author of Senate Bill 1 and chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee, to discuss the ratification of SB 1 at San Francisco’s Commonwealth Club, Friday, June 16

US Secretary of Transportation (ret) Norman Mineta to deliver opening remarks.
May 8, 2017

The need to invest in California’s transportation system is dire and estimates suggest a nearly $140B backlog in deferred maintenance on highways, bridges, and local streets and roads. While the funding crisis is widely recognized, solutions are difficult to come by. Senate Bill 1, passed by the California legislature in early April, dedicates over $50B to transportation projects through increased fuel taxes and vehicle registration fees. Author of SB 1, California State Senator Jim Beall, will deliver the keynote address at the Eighth Annual Mineta National Transportation Finance Summit: "Are We There Yet? Bridging the Gap in California's Transportation Funding" at the Commonwealth Club of California, Friday, June 16. Sponsored by the Mineta Transportation Institute of San Jose State University, this free half-day summit will begin with continental breakfast at 8:30am and will conclude at 11:30am.

During the program’s first hour, which will be recorded for NPR broadcast, retired Secretary of Transportation Norman Mineta will introduce Senator Beall, who will discuss the Senate Bill 1 transportation package, which increases road maintenance funding by $5 billion annually. This is the first major investment in California’s transportation infrastructure since 1994 and it updates an obsolete revenue system that fell behind the spiraling maintenance demands of more than 357,000 lane miles of state, city, and county roads.

Senator Beall said, “The bill is based on a user-pays model, placing the responsibility on the motorists who use the roads to maintain the roads. The cost to the average driver will be about $10 a month. By investing in the repair of the infrastructure that millions of Californians rely on every day, the state is also generating and sustaining hundreds of thousands of jobs.”

In the second half of the program, Director of MTI’s National Transportation Finance Center Dr. Asha Weinstein Agrawal will present the results of year eight of a national random-digit-dial public opinion poll asking 1,200 respondents if they would support various tax options for raising federal transportation revenues, with a special focus on understanding support for increasing revenues for public transit.

This presentation will be followed by a panel discussion of the strategies local and regional governments and transportation agencies are taking to address California’s transportation needs. Panelists will include Nuria Fernandez, General Manager and CEO, Valley Transportation Authority; Steve Heminger, executive director, Metropolitan Transportation Commission; and Bill Higgins, Executive Director, California Association of Councils of Governments. Mineta Transportation Institute executive director Karen Philbrick, PhD, will moderate the panel discussion.

Event details: Commonwealth Club of California, 555 Post St., San Francisco, 8:30 a.m. until 11:30 a.m. Friday, June 16. For free registration, go to http://www.commonwealthclub.org/events/2017-06-16/mineta-transportationsummit Reserve early; seating is limited.

ABOUT CALIFORNIA STATE SENATOR JIM BEALL

Hon. Jim Beall, California State Senator, brings a lifetime of experience and understanding in government efficiency, transportation, and human services to the State Senate. In three decades of public service – first as a San Jose City Councilman, then as a Santa Clara County Supervisor, and as an Assembly member – Jim Beall has left his mark across Silicon Valley. He spurred the construction of Highways 85 and 87; fought to bring BART to San Jose; and obtained millions in state funding to streamline the Interstate 280/880/ Stevens Creek Boulevard interchange.

ABOUT THE MINETA TRANSPORTATION INSTITUTE

At the Mineta Transportation Institute (MTI) at San Jose State University (SJSU) our mission is to increase mobility for all by improving the safety, efficiency, accessibility, and convenience of our nation's’ transportation system through research, education, workforce development and technology transfer. We help create a connected world. MTI was founded in 1991 and is funded through the US Departments of Transportation and Homeland Security, the California Department of Transportation, and public and private grants. MTI is affiliated with SJSU’s Lucas College and Graduate School of Business.

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Contact:
Hilary Nixon
MTI Director of Research and Technology Transfer
408.924.7564
hilary.nixon@sjsu.edu