Only in the US of A?
An interesting thing about election day in the USA is that citizens not only vote for a new President but Congress and Senate public officials as well. In many cases, they also vote for a range of state and local government officials and issues – such as whether to raise taxes to pay for public transit.
As pointed out by the excellent National Public Radio (NPR), “One of the unheralded national stories from Election Day is just how well trains and buses did at the ballot box, as voters in dozens of cities approved local tax increases to expand and improve public transit.”
Yes, you read correctly, citizens of Seattle, San Francisco Bay Region, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Indianapolis/Marion County and Raleigh/Wake County (North Carolina) voted overwhelmingly to pay more taxes to invest in expanding public transport services. This is funding that will come directly out of local residents' pockets, not via federal taxes from Washington.
The article states, “Transit didn't just win in big cities and blue states... Voters approved referendums to boost spending on transit in more traditionally car-centric cities, too, including measures for new rail and bus rapid transit in Raleigh, N.C., public transportation projects in Charleston, S.C., and transit expansions in Columbus and Toledo, Ohio, and Indianapolis, among other cities.”
I’d love to know how these questions were asked on the ballot papers. Perhaps we could also learn more about how the citizens of these places were engaged in order to conclude that firstly, they want better public transport (no brainer); and secondly, that they are prepared to pay for it!