Measure RR, sales tax to fund Caltrain, pulls ahead in early returns

A one-eighth-cent sales tax that would be used to fund Caltrain was looking like it could pass in early returns...

A one-eighth-cent sales tax that would be used to fund Caltrain was looking like it could pass in early returns posted shortly before 9 p.m. Tuesday with 74.69 percent of the vote in San Francisco and 68.55 percent and 77.86 percent in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties, respectively.

The measure, which barely squeaked onto this year’s ballot before the deadline, requires two-thirds approval by voters in each of the three counties that would be subject to it for passage.

Revenues generated from the .125-percent tax will give the Peninsula rail network the dedicated funding source it’s long needed to not just survive, but also expand and electrify its trains.

It’s expected to generate roughly $100 million annually, which will take the pressure off of its prior dependence on farebox revenues — which have plummeted since the start of COVID-19 — and contributions from San Francisco, Santa Clara and San Mateo counties.

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