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NO on measure RR

Original post made by Bill Hough, Los Altos, on Oct 9, 2020

My ballot recently arrived, and I see that Caltrain wants more of our money despite increased working from home. There have also been reports of special interests, including "contractors, unions and advocacy groups," are throwing $1.3 million into pushing this regressive Caltrain sales tax increase.

Vote NO. Sales taxes already contribute into making the Bay Area a horribly expensive place to live; especially for people of modest means, who must pay the greatest percentage of their income in these regressive taxes and fees. Each increase by itself does not amount to much, but the cumulative effect is to add to the unaffordability of the region. The tax proposal fails to take into account that residents are taking an economic hit from the never-ending lockdowns. Recommending a sales tax increase during these difficult times is simply tone deaf. Since the shutdowns began, government has shown little sympathy to residents who have been ruined financially.

A better idea is to do a top-to-bottom review of Caltrain's spending and figure out how they can participate in the sacrifices demanded of normal residents. If voters feel Caltrain must have more money despite increased working from home, the solution is diverting existing funds from the overpriced BART extension to San Jose (eliminate the Santa Clara portion and/or expensive tunneling alternatives) or high speed rail. Better yet, raise taxes on the rich tech companies that are responsible for the congestion problem. Either way, say "no" to the special interests and stop the sales tax increases.

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