After the news broke that Amazon was reportedly going to split its HQ2 plans between New York City and Washington, D.C., some cities are left console themselves. A Planetizen opinion piece picks up the pieces.
It was not your basic fuel tax hike. Utah voters were told that raising the tax would help education by redirecting revenue from the General Fund to schools that currently goes to transportation. Yet voters also passed decidedly liberal initiatives.
Similar to Missouri voters, who rejected a 10-cents per gallon tax hike placed on the ballot by the state legislature, Colorado voters rejected two competing initiatives to finance transportation improvements placed on the ballot by citizen groups.
Missouri legislators approved a bill at the end of the legislative session to place a 10-cents per gallon gas tax increase on the ballot to fund road repair. It had the support of Gov. Mike Parson but was rejected by nearly 54 percent of voters.
In potentially the most important transportation ballot measure in the state since 1990, the last time residents voted on the gas tax, Californians were deciding whether to repeal fuel taxes and vehicle registration fees approved last year.
Two western states had very similar renewable energy initiatives on the ballot sponsored by NextGen America requiring utilities to get 50 percent of electricity by 2030. It passed in Nevada but was rejected in Arizona.
Had election results proved favorable in Oregon and Washington, UC Berkley Law Climate Program Director Ethan Elkind suggested that the two states could join California to form a West Coast Climate Bloc. Oregon came through, but not Washington.
Unlike energy issues that will appear in the form of ballot initiatives on Tuesday in three western states, voters in New Mexico will cast their energy vote in their choice for state land commissioner, an arcane position with considerable authority.
The environment and climate change may not be top issues in the nation's hotly contested gubernatorial contests next Tuesday, but their outcomes can cause policy changes. Take North Carolina and the election of Roy Cooper, a Democrat, two years ago.
A dire report on climate change issued by a United Nations panel influenced Washington-based Microsoft to take a position on a controversial state carbon fee, Initiative 1631. Oil companies are fighting back, citing wide exemptions from the fee.
Voters in two Western states next month will determine whether to require energy utilities to increase their share of electricity from renewable sources to 50 percent by 2030. In Arizona, the campaign has become the costliest in state history.
Incumbent Republican Gov. Scott Walker charges that his Democratic opponent, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers, will hike gas taxes by as much as a dollar a gallon to fund road repair, on top of raising income and property taxes.