METRO referendum gets voters' OK

November 6, 2012 7:34:44 PM PST
Eyewitness News is projecting that voters will approve METRO's General Mobility Program Referendum.

The new deal continues to give Houston, Harris County and 14 smaller cities 25 percent of whatever METRO collects in taxes in 2014. That money always goes to surrounding communities to build roads.

But here's the change that voters approved: If the economy improves and METRO collects more taxes, the agency can keep half of the growth, something it doesn't do now. This extra money for METRO will go to buy buses and shelters.

However, none of the money the agency may collect in the future will go to fund its light rail until at least 2025.

Also, this new deal ultimately will cost the city of Houston $162 million over the next 11 years, but Mayor Annise Parker says she's OK with that.

"Even though this slightly affects ReBuild Houston's funding, METRO's contributions to that program are not enough to outweigh the need to have a strong and secure regional transit system," Parker told Eyewitness News in August.

Stay with Eyewitness News and abc13.com for the latest details.

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