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Public Transportation Funding at a Driving Expense

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Photo by Zach Behrens/LAist

A local state assemblyman has proposed a bill that could end up adding a fee to driver registrations or gas at the pumps in Los Angeles County. The West Hollywood based Mike Feuer, who sits on the state's Transportation committee, has put in AB2558 that would either add $90 to annual registrations or 9-cents per gallon of gas.

It would raise $400 million a year for public transit projects. It's a hefty hunk of change that's not going to bring the subway to the sea over night, but will fund and help complete various projects around the county. However, there are always the naysayers and its always the same people -- the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association.

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"This seems to be a cashing in on public sympathies on global warming to generate additional funding for programs that already exist," Jon Coupal, president of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Assn., told the LA Times.

Meanwhile, gasoline executives of the five biggest U.S. oil companies were questioned today by lawmakers "to explain the soaring fuel prices amid huge industry profits and why they weren't investing more to develop renewable energy source such as wind and solar" the Associated Press reports. Exxon profited $40 billion last year, but says they provided $100 million in funding for climate change research. That comes out to 0.0025 of their profits, not even 1%. Developers even give 1% to the arts in most cities when they build.