AIMING HIGH FOR A TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM WE CAN RELY ON
It’s time to get serious about our transportation system
Let's Aim High
We need a Governor who will be honest about what needs to be done, and who will be courageous enough to do it. If all we do is rearrange the chairs on the deck of the Transportation Titanic, all we will get is more efficient seating on a sinking ship.
That's why I have a plan to raise $3 billion from the wealthiest individuals and institutions in MA. I will file legislation to implement a 1.6% tax on wealthy private colleges and universities with endowments over $1 billon. Just nine institutions will be affected. The modest tax is fair and affordable and would generate an additional $1 billion annually for transportation and education. I will also push to bring back the Fair Share Tax, which would ask people who make over $1 million a year to pay more in income taxes to fund investments in transportation and education. The tax would generate an additional $2 billion per year and has been twice approved by the Legislature.
We desperately need new revenue for our transportation system. The condition of our transportation infrastructure and commute times in Massachusetts are among the worst in the country, and they are getting worse under the Baker Administration.
We need new revenue to fix our broken MBTA system. We can’t keep asking residents to pay more and get less. Governor Baker has jacked up fares on riders and threatened to cut commuter rail service for weekend riders, seniors and the disabled. And his proposed timeline for getting the MBTA into a state of good repair is unacceptable, thanks to his refusal to acknowledge and support the need for new revenue.
I also believe we need our government to be held accountable when our system fails residents. That's why I will be the first Governor to bring the commuter rail under the direct control of the administration. I will fire Keolis and bring commuter rail operations in house.
We also need to invest more in Regional Transit Authorities that serve the rest of the state, and we need new revenue to fix our roads and bridges. While we made progress in road conditions and in addressing the backlog of structurally deficient bridges across the Commonwealth under the Patrick Administration, we are slipping and going the wrong direction again under the Baker Administration.
We also need to plan for and invest in the transportation system we need for the future. Our system needs to better meet our residents’ needs throughout this entire state - it needs to be convenient, greener, accommodating of all modes for all people, regionally equitable and financially sustainable. It also needs to support economic growth and job creation, stimulate smart development and serve as an affordable housing strategy by connecting existing affordable housing outside of the greater Boston area to jobs that exist within the greater Boston area.
That’s why we need to do the South Coast Rail project the right way from the beginning – electrified via the Stoughton route, which is the fastest, most direct, greenest and thoroughly planned option from a transportation and economic development perspective. And that’s why we need to seriously explore other transformational transportation projects, including high-speed rail to Springfield, the North-South Rail Link and the Blue Line extension to Lynn.