FAQs

The PCTPA Board of Directors is comprised of one councilmember from Roseville, Lincoln, Rocklin, Loomis, Auburn and Colfax, two members from the Placer County Board of Supervisors and one citizen representative appointed by the Board of Supervisors. The same local elected officials are the same that administer and manage nearly all of the transportation projects that take place in Placer County.

PCTPA does not receive any funding from property tax.

PCTPA receives federal and state dollars to plan and administer transportation projects, as well as local developer impact fees when appropriate. Subsequently, PCTPA has the ability to attract additional federal and state dollars for transportation projects if it has more local dollars to put up as “a match.”

We see typically about $.20 cents of every $1.00 returned to Placer County. This money can only be used to fund local road and street repair and improvement projects, public transit and alternative transportation. These funds are returned to the local cities and towns and restored their local street and roads budgets to about 55 percent of normal.

SB1 funds, or the gas tax, cannot be used to fund the desperately needed I-80/Highway 65 Interchange Design and Safety Improvements and Highway 65 Widening.

A local transportation funding source would be generated in south Placer County for south Placer County projects, and managed by the same local elected officials that govern south Placer County cities. The state could not divert these funds. They would be ours.

That is true, but that is no longer the case. Decades ago the State and Federal Governments used to pay for about 90 percent of all transportation projects. As money grew scarce, they started funding less and less and putting the burden back on local governments to fund transportation projects.

Now, local governments are more often than not required to put up a local funding “match” in order to receive funding from the State and Federal Governments for transportation projects.

Placer County currently does not have a local funding match, but 26 other counties do. The south Placer region is one of the most populous regions in the state without a local transportation funding source.

A local transportation funding source, or a local sales tax, is the primary means of local funding authorized in state law. PCTPA’s Transportation Investment Plan would be funded by a half percent local transportation sales tax that would expire in 30 years. PCTPA’s Investment Plan also contains state law requirements and the best practices from other counties that have adopted local transportation taxes, including:

  • Funds must stay local within the district they are generated in
  • Funds are controlled by local city and county elected officials
  • Funds cannot be raided by the state or federal government
  • Funds must be tied to a specific transportation expenditure plan — that is, a specific list of projects
  • Dollars generated can only be spent on a specific list of projects (the investment plan)
  • The tax must be approved by the voters with a 2/3 majority vote, 66 percent
  • The investment plan (list of projects) cannot be changed without public approval
  • The ordinance contains strong taxpayer safeguards including a citizen oversight committee with independent audits and an annual report to the taxpayers

In regard to developer impact fees, these are charged on a “development unit equivalent” basis to all new development – residential, commercial, industrial – to pay for the local and regional transportation impact of the new development. Note that this is not “free” money, but ultimately passed on by the developer to the new home buyer or business user.

By the state constitution, developer impact fees can only pay for the incremental impact of the new development, and can’t be used to pay for existing deficiencies, or it becomes a tax rather than a fee.

PCTPA has set developer impact fees at the highest allowed before it becomes an illegal tax. In the draft transportation plan, developer impact fees pay for almost all of the Placer Parkway.

Together, state and federal gas and excise taxes and developer fees are projected to bring in around $1.9 billion over the next 30 years to Placer County, far short of the $3 billion we need. A local transportation funding source would make up the difference by generating new revenue and helping to attract more state and federal dollars.

Early in the planning process for the Keep Placer Moving Transportation Investment Plan, PCTPA looked at a wider variety of revenue streams, including a property or parcel tax. It just wouldn’t generate enough revenue, nor allow those that visit the south Placer region to shop to pay their fair share of the highway improvement costs.

There are a lot of regional draws in south Placer County such as the Roseville Galleria, The Fountains, the Auto Mall, Costco, Placer wineries and sports facilities just to name a few. Would everyone – south Placer County resident or not – who makes a purchase in Placer County pay the proposed tax? Would that affect business?

Payment of a local transportation funding sales tax would be shared by everyone who purchases something in Placer County, including the many visitors and shoppers who come from outside Placer County. In fact, nearly 40 percent of the revenue that would be generated is estimated to come from outside of south Placer County. The tax would be applied to all retail sales transactions that are currently subject to sales tax. That includes non-food retail sales, dining out, and the like.

Yes! In fact, Placer County, and specifically the south Placer area, is one of the most populous areas in the entire state WITHOUT a local transportation funding source. Twenty-six (26) other counties have local transportation funding sources, some have two! This is why Placer County falls behind when it comes to receiving transportation funding from the state and federal government.

If voters should adopt a local transportation sales tax, will that disqualify Placer County from receiving state and federal transportation funds?

Just the opposite! The state and federal government are requiring increasingly large amounts of local transportation funds to match their funds. Since Placer County is one of the largest counties left in California without a local source of transportation funds, the county misses out on a big chunk of available matching funds. PCTPA estimates we could attract over $500 million in additional state and federal matching funds that would otherwise go to other Counties if we had a local funding source.