What happens in Tempe should Prop. 400 lapse?

By Sam Kmack | Arizona Republic

Fears about traffic congestion were one reason Tempe voters rejected plans by the Arizona Coyotes to build a hockey arena and entertainment complex near Rio Salado.

But residents could face bigger transportation issues soon if a massive voter-backed transportation and transit measure lapses.

Proposition 400 is a voter-approved countywide initiative that has used a half-cent sales tax to fund everything from major freeway projects, such as Loops 101, 202 and 303, light rail lines, arterial road projects and nearly every Valley city’s bus system.  

It was first approved by voters in 1985 and then extended for another 20-year term in 2004. The measure has generated tens of billions of dollars for the region and helped unlock billions more in federal grants that wouldn’t otherwise have been available.

The sales tax is set to expire, and state officials haven’t agreed on a renewal option to send to voters since Gov. Doug Ducey vetoed a bill last year. That leaves the November 2024 election as the final chance to get voter approval before Proposition 400 sunsets at the end of 2025.


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