Vote “Yes” on Ballot Measure 20-275 to Continue Fixing Our Streets

UPDATE 10/23/2017: Official information about Ballot Measure 20-275 is now posted on the City of Eugene’s website.

Over the past 10 years, the City of Eugene has reduced a backlog of potholed, crumbling streets with two successful bond measures. This bond will continue that important work.

1) IT CONTINUES A SUCCESSFUL PROGRAM. In 2007, Eugene had over $200 million in needed street repairs. Citizens wanted the potholes fixed—and thanks to bond measures voters approved in 2008 and 2012, the backlog was cut in half. This measure continues the same property tax rate. To avoid paying far more in the future to rebuild streets, we should fund cost-effective ongoing maintenance.

2) IT’S OUR RESPONSIBILITY. Federal and state governments do not provide sufficient funding to keep our streets in good repair. We need to provide funding ourselves.

3) IT’S FAIR. This measure will fund about 90 repaving projects, across all city wards. A tax on properties spreads the burden fairly. Everyone benefits; everyone helps pay.

4) IT’S ACCOUNTABLE. As before, this measure clearly spells out which streets will be fixed. A separate volunteer citizen oversight committee will review all work, and an outside auditor will certify spending. Money will be used as voters intend.

5) IT BENEFITS KIDS, SENIORS & ALTER ABLED. Like past measures, this one allocates a portion of the funding to make our transportation system better and safer for children, the elderly, alter-abled, and others who prefer to walk or ride a bike. Past measures have improved our popular off-street path network, addressed dangerous areas with better pedestrian crossings, and created safer routes to schools, parks and commercial areas. These projects also have been well distributed in neighborhoods all over the city. More of this work is needed, and this measure increases the portion devoted to such projects from 6.5% to 10%. This measure will help make our neighborhoods safer.

PLEASE VOTE “YES”: We should continue to maintain and strengthen our transportation system with responsible, necessary investments. We urge you to vote “Yes” on Ballot Measure 20-275!

Background

Voter-approved general obligation bond measures — “GO bonds” — are key to Eugene’s pavement preservation program.

In November 2008, Eugene voters approved Ballot Measure 20-145, a five-year, $35.9-million bond measure promising to fix 32 streets in Eugene. The measure cost an average of $0.61 per $1,000 of assessed value each year, or $102 per year for an average homeowner. By the time the funds were fully expended, the City of Eugene had repaired 54 streets and a number of off-street paths.

In November 2012, Eugene voters resoundingly approved Ballot Measure 20-197, a new $43-million bond measure to continue the street repair program for another five years to fix 76 more streets and provide an average of $516,000 per year for bicycle and pedestrian projects. Set to expire in 2018, the measure is costing an average of $0.65 per $1,000 of assessed value each year, or $127 per year for an average homeowner.

Now in November 2017, Eugene voters are being asked to approve Ballot Measure 20-275, a new $51.2-million bond measure to continue the street repair program for another five years to fix approximately 88 lane-miles of roads and fund bicycle and pedestrian projects. The measure is estimated to cost an average of $0.65 per $1,000 of assessed value each year (the same rate as the 2012 bond measure), or $148 per year for an average homeowner.

Because of these bond measures, plus about $3 million a year from Eugene’s 5-cent-per-gallon local gas tax, the Public Works Department has made significant progress on reducing the backlog of needed street repairs. The 2017 Pavement Management Report showed progress had been made on the condition of Eugene’s streets in large part due to the additional funds available from the GO bonds, but more work was needed to further reduce the backlog of repairs on the 1,356 lane-miles of streets in the City. Specifically, the 2017 report calculated the backlog of repairs on improved asphalt streets was $92 million—a reduction in the estimated backlog of needed repairs of $79 million since the 2008 bond was approved. Despite this downward trend, the backlog is projected to continue to grow unless there is an increase in funding that is both sufficient and sustainable.

To ensure accountability for the expenditure of voter-approved bonds to fix streets, an outside auditor reviews the City of Eugene’s use of bond proceeds, determines whether proceeds were used as approved by voters, and prepares a public report.

In addition, the citizen Street Repair Review Panel meets several times a year to look at recently completed street repair projects, learn more about plans for future repair projects, review in depth the expenditure of bond funds to fix streets, and produce an annual report.

Project Maps

2017 Bond Measure Project Map

2017

2012 Bond Measure Project Map

2012

2008 Bond Measure Project Map

2008

Other Resources

News Stories

General Information

2017 Ballot Measure 20-275

2012 Ballot Measure 20-197

2008 Ballot Measure 20-145

What’s Your Goal? (Videos)

What’s the goal for your family?

What’s the goal for your family?

Whatever you call it—Vision Zero, Target Zero, Drive to ZeroZero Fatalities, Toward Zero Deaths, Moving Toward Zero Deaths, or Towards Zero—is all about eliminating deaths and life-changing injuries on our roadways. Some people may think zero is an impossible goal, but when it comes to your family and friends, what other number would be acceptable? An increasing number of cities, counties and states are aiming for zero because every one matters.

Here are some videos making the case for zero as the right goal:

Safer Streets for Everyone!

UPDATE 7/31/2016: Amend language of petition to call for pursuing the “9 Components of a Strong Vision Zero Commitment.”

UPDATE 4/24/2016: Now that the Eugene City Council has adopted Vision Zero with Resolution No. 5143, amend language of petition to address other local elected officials.

Sign Pledge + Petition

Pledge

  • I will behave safely and responsibly at all times on public streets, respecting and empathizing with other people’s need to get where they’re going safely.
  • I acknowledge that traveling on public streets can be risky, and I resolve to be alert to the surroundings.
  • I also recognize the role of the roadways, paths, and sidewalks as public space in the community, not only a means for travel, and resolve to share the road with all users, whether they are traveling to a destination or enjoying the street appropriately as public space.
  • I will be a good example, and I want my neighbors to slow down, say “hi,” and join me in spreading the word.

Source: City of Portland, OR

Petition

On November 18, 2015, in response to an earlier petition organized by Better Eugene-Springfield Transit (BEST), the Eugene City Council adopted Resolution No. 5143, “setting as official policy the Vision Zero goal that no loss of life or serious injury on our transportation system is acceptable.”

Now I call on Eugene (and other local governments) to pursue the “9 Components of a Strong Vision Zero Commitment”:

  1. Political Commitment
  2. Multi-Disciplinary Leadership
  3. Action Plan
  4. Equity
  5. Cooperation & Collaboration
  6. Systems-Based Approach
  7. Data-Driven
  8. Community Engagement
  9. Transparency

Source: Vision Zero Network

Vision Zero

Vision Zero is a strategy to eliminate all traffic fatalities and severe injuries, while increasing safe, healthy, equitable mobility for all. First implemented in Sweden in the 1990s, Vision Zero has proved successful across Europe—and now has been embraced by New York, Boston, Chicago, Austin, San DiegoLos Angeles, Santa Barbara, San José, San Mateo, San Francisco, Seattle, and Portland.

Sources: Vision Zero Network, Wikipedia

Vision Zero uses a multidisciplinary approach of the “Six E’s”—engineering, enforcement, education, encouragement, equity, and evaluation (and planning)—involving highway and traffic engineers, law enforcement, vehicle designers, medical specialists, educators, social scientists, media, government officials, and others. Sweden’s program is based on four principles:

  • Ethics: Human life and health are paramount and take priority over mobility and other objectives of the road traffic system;
  • Responsibility: Providers and regulators of the road traffic system share responsibility with drivers and other users;
  • Safety: Road traffic systems should take account of human fallibility and minimize both the opportunities for errors and the harm done when they occur; and
  • Mechanisms for change: Providers and regulators must do their utmost to guarantee the safety of all citizens and cooperate with road users, and all three must be ready to change to achieve safety.

Sources: Connecticut Office of Legislative Research, Puget Sound Regional Council

U.S. DOT Mayors’ Challenge for Safer People, Safer Streets

Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy and Springfield Mayor Christine Lundberg each accepted the U.S. Department of Transportation Mayors’ Challenge for Safer People, Safer Streets:

  1. Take a complete streets approach.
  2. Identify and address barriers to make streets safe and convenient for all road users, including people of all ages and abilities and those using assistive mobility devices.
  3. Gather and track walking and bicycling data.
  4. Use designs appropriate to the context of the street and its uses.
  5. Take advantage of opportunities to create and complete walking and bicycling networks through maintenance.
  6. Improve walking and bicycling safety laws and regulations.
  7. Educate and enforce proper road use behaviors by all.

Source: U.S. Dept. of Transportation

Road Traffic Fatality Facts

Leading causes of death in Oregon in 2013:

  • Ages 15–24: 1) suicide, 2) road traffic crashes, 3) poisoning
  • Ages 25–34: 1) suicide, 2) poisoning, 3) road traffic crashes
  • Ages 35–44: 1) suicide, 2) poisoning, 3) road traffic crashes

Source: WorldLifeExpectancy.com

In 2015, traffic deaths in Oregon were 20% higher than in 2014, the second highest percentage increase in the nation.
Source: National Highway Transportation Safety Administration

Fatal traffic crashes in Lane County 2007–2013:

Lane County Road Fatalities 2007-2013

Each red dot represents one or more lives lost.

Source: Lane Council of Governments

Feds allocate up to $75 million to West Eugene EmX

There was some very good news about the West Eugene EmX project today. The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) announced  allocations for FY 2014 and also released the President’s recommended budget for FY 2015. The West Eugene EmX project received $24 million in FY 2014 and is recommended to receive $51 million in 2015. That would total $75 million from the FTA Small Starts program, which represents about 80 percent of the project cost and is the maximum available under the program.

» See FY 2014 Section 5309 Fixed Guideway Capital Investment Grants Allocations (Table 7)…

» See Proposed FY 2015 Section 5309 Small Starts Projects (page 12)…
Continue reading