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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Racine County board delays vote on transit authority

From an article by David Steinkraus in The Journal Times (Racine):

YORKVILLE — The County Board decided Tuesday to delay its vote on a regional transit authority until its next meeting on Feb. 24, but many citizens showed up in the board chambers to voice their opinions.

Although Kenosha-Racine-Milwaukee commuter rail has been the focus of most comments, the proposal sent to Gov. Jim Doyle is broader than that.

It suggests that the state create a permanent regional transit authority which could be joined by municipalities in southeastern Wisconsin. This permanent RTA would oversee not only a commuter rail project but also integration of the various bus systems, and it would have the authority to replace local property tax support of mass transit with a sales tax of up to 0.5 percent.

The board resolution does not express specific support for the tax but it does ask that any board with taxing authority be elected rather than appointed and that each municipality be allowed to approve or disapprove a transit tax.

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