Diversion of transit sales taxes to 15 cities and Harris County continues
25%, approximately, of all transit sales taxes collected in the Metro service area will continue to be withheld from Metro in the amount of $2.1 billion.
Through 2014, the end of the current contracts, Metro will have delivered $2.7 billion to road and other projects in the 16 entities.
Prevents completion of Metro Solutions plan voters approved in 2003.
Only change: instead of Metro getting none of the 25%, in 2014 the dollar amounts to the other entities will freeze at that year’s dollar levels, and any increment above that will be split 50/50 between Metro and the other 16 entities.
Metro estimates that the 50/50 split will add $400 million to its revenues in the 10-year period.
- Metro is forbidden from using any of the new increment for rail projects until 2025
- Can only be used for bus-related expenses and debt reduction.
- Effectively kills University and Uptown/Galleria light rail lines. Reason: in 2025, Harris County will probably have the population to force a change in the makeup of the Metro board, relegating the City to minority status. Harris County already has its own rail agency, the Gulf Coast Rail District. It would then control essentially all transit development and service in the region.
- Effectively kills light rail service to Greenspoint, Bush Intercontinental, and Hobby Airport.
- Effectively kills light rail service in the Inner Katy corridor.
- Effectively kills light rail service in the Sunnyside area, Gulfgate Center, and Telephone Road.
- Effectively kills the Southwest Commuter line to the Harris County border.
- Creates connectivity issues for planned commuter rail line out 290.
Continues unfair allocation of funds
Harris County continues to receive about 56% of the taxes collected in the unincorporated areas of the County.
City of Houston continues to receive approximately 20% of the taxes collected in the City.
14 multicities continue to receive approximately 65% of the taxes collected in their areas.
City of Houston continues to subsidize growth and development in unincorporated areas of Harris County and in all the multicities, enabling lower tax rates in the other cities.