The Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) today voted to pursue legislation in Sacramento this year that would enable Bay Area voters to consider a transportation revenue measure as early as November 2026.
The proposed measure aims to advance a climate-friendly Bay Area transportation system that is safe, accessible and convenient for all. This includes preserving and enhancing public transit service; making transit faster, safer and easier to use; repairing local streets and roads; and improving mobility and access for all people, including pedestrians, bicyclists and scooter and wheelchair users.
State Sen. Scott Wiener of San Francisco earlier this month introduced what is known as a spot bill that will be used as the vehicle for authorizing placement of the proposed measure on a future ballot in each of the nine Bay Area counties. The first opportunity to amend Wiener’s Senate Bill 925 will be in mid-February.
“Bay Area residents, businesses and visitors demand a world-class transportation system with safe, frequent, reliable and seamless transit service, smooth streets without dangerous potholes, and safe access for those walking and biking,” said Wiener. “I’m proud to author legislation to give Bay Area residents a chance to vote for this better future.”
MTC expects any new transportation measure it pursues to generate at least $1 billion annually. While the Commission has not yet identified a revenue source for the proposed measure, MTC Chair and Napa County Supervisor Alfredo Pedroza noted that he and his colleagues are considering a wide range of options.
“Voters traditionally have supported transportation through bridge tolls or sales taxes," Pedroza said. "Bridge tolls are not an option in this case and we think it’s smart to look at more than a regional sales tax. We’re proposing a few options so we have enough flexibility and enough time to get it right.”
Just as MTC commissioners have proposed a range of tax options, so too have they identified multiple expenditure categories.
“We recognize that we’ll be asking voters to take on a heavy lift,” acknowledged Pedroza. “The big lesson from COVID is the need to transform both our transit network and the way we pay to operate it. But we also need to transform our local streets and roads to fix potholes and make the roads safer for walking and biking. We need to improve connectivity and do it in a way that doesn’t encourage people to drive more. And we need to make our transportation infrastructure more resilient to rising sea levels, flooding, wildfires and extreme heat.”
More information about the measure proposed for the 2026 ballot may be found on the MTC website.
MTC is the transportation planning, financing and coordinating agency for the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area.