There is no disagreement in the Capitol that California’s roads are in bad shape. Between the state and local governments there’s nearly $140 billion in deferred maintenance.
There are a number of proposals to pay for fixing the roads, but no clear consensus. Republican votes would be needed to approve any new taxes, and the party has so far opposed that option.
Governor Jerry Brown would not commit to signing a tax increase if one comes to his desk. And he wouldn’t reveal what his preferences might be.
"What you’re getting here is the opening chapter in a longer novel,"he says. "And there will be more chapters in the next few weeks."
He does say a bi-partisan agreement will be reached, as it was with the water bond.
There have been various funding proposals from both sides of the aisle, and from interest groups. Ideas include increasing the gas tax, and vehicle registration and license fees. There are calls to use Cap and Trade Revenues to repair roads and to charge drivers based on how many miles they drive.
Brown says even after a plan is approved, it may take awhile for drivers to see improvements because government moves slowly. And he says that's good, because it helps prevent mistakes.