, 11 tweets, 8 min read Read on Twitter
1/ Frustrated and stuck on the @MBTA? Here’s a thread for your morning commute, and a reminder of why the transit system’s main funding source has fallen far short of expectations:
2/ The @MBTA has relied on the “penny on the sales tax” since 2001. At the time, the state thought sales tax revenue would continue to grow by 3 to 8% per year as it had. In 2007, 3% was still “worst case scenario”.
3/ Actual growth of sales tax has, in fact, averaged 1.5% — half what leaders expected. This is partly because of changes in what people buy. Further, the “penny on the sales tax” portion that the @MBTA gets doesn’t include meals.
4/ It should be noted that raising @MBTA fares will not significantly improve the subway system’s financial situation. Note that fares are a small portion of its revenue. Further, high fares tend to hit riders with lower incomes the hardest. #MApoli #regressive
5/ Fare hikes are another way to make our revenue system more upside-down than it already is (where households with lower incomes pay a larger percentage of it than more affluent ones). massbudget.org/report_window.…
6/ Related to fares, this new @MIT study shows when riders with low incomes have fewer barriers to riding the @MBTA, they use it more. They can better get to work, school, doctors appointments. equitytransit.mit.edu
7/ So how do we get more funding for public transit? Remember the #FairShare Amendment (AKA millionaire’s tax)? It was set to be on the ballot last November, and the revenues would have been dedicated to education and #transportation. #MApoli
8/ The Mass. SJC struck down the #FairShare Amendment (millionaire’s tax) last year, but it has another shot through the Legislative route. If successful, it could generate >$2 bil for education and #transportation. #MBTA #mapoli
9/ In the meantime, it is worth considering ways to generate more revenue in more #progressive ways — ways that ask those with the most income to contribute a percentage that’s closer to what everyone else pays. Here are 14 ways: massbudget.org/report_window.… #MApoli #MBTA
10/ To read more about how the @MBTA's bedrock funding source has lagged behind expectations, see our report: massbudget.org/report_window.…
11/ You can also get into the weeds on how #transportation funding works in #Massachusetts and what the sources are, here: massbudget.org/report_window.…
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