The best bus ever

The best bus ever
Jason Sievers' awesome Art in Transit bus

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

85% of Idahoans want transit tax power

The Idaho Statesman reports this morning that a new Boise State University survey found that an overwhelming majority of Idahoans want the power to tax themselves for better public transit. Read the story here.

Reporter Greg Hahn also wrote that House Revenue and Taxation Committee Chairman Dennis Lake "said he received a copy of a tax-for-transit bill Tuesday. He already has two other local option proposals in hand, he said, and the committee should consider introducing them early next week."

Also of interest from the BSU survey: "Just 2 percent said they use mass transit now, but 16 percent said they would consider it if gas prices were between $2 and $3. If gas prices reach $4 to $5, 57 percent of Idahoans would consider commuting via mass transit."

Gas prices are already between $2 and $3. Hey 16 percent - what are you waiting for?! Oh yeah ... more frequent transit with longer hours, probably.

3 comments:

danielo said...

If gas prices were to reach $10/gallon and the Bus were free, the percentage of Boiseans using mass transit would not change.

It's not a fiscal decision to drive a car in lieu of commuting wisely, either by transit or by walking/bicycling. It is an emotional and perceptual decision.

In previous employment, I served as an Alternate Transportation promoter. I learned that there is very nearly nothing you can do to encourage people to leave their cars at home unless they already have a notion to do so.

Julie in Boise said...

danielo, that's pretty depressing! The survey seemed to show otherwise, too ... that even a small rise in gas prices could prompt a few more people to take transit.

Did you hold your alterate transportation job during the recent era of $3 gas, or before that?

danielo said...

It was about 5 years ago. Even then, there was precedent to show that gas price fluctuations had no impact on alternate transportation use. I think it's a old-west attitude. "I don't go NOWHERE without my horse." Personal freedom is psychologically tied to vehicles more than anyone cares to admit. That's part of the problem, and could be part of the solution. If those in charge would combat that mistaken perception, things would begin to change.