UCI

2002 PPIC Statewide Survey: December 2002
Special Survey of Orange County
Public Policy Institute of California
in collaboration with the
University of California, Irvine

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Appendices
2002 Survey
Survey Advisory Commitee

University of California, Irvine
2002 UC Regents

Surface Transportation Priorities and Funding

When asked to think about funding for a range of surface transportation projects, a plurality of county residents (39%) responded that freeways and highways should have top priority. Another 7 percent gave the nod more specifically to carpool lanes. Thus, nearly half of all residents (46%) mention freeways, highways, and carpool lanes as their top choice for county attention. Fewer residents mention light rail systems (21%), local streets and roads (16%), and public bus systems (14%).

Comparing these results to the November 2002 Statewide Survey, we find that Orange County residents are similar to Californians throughout the state in prioritizing freeways and highways (39% to 36%) but less inclined to note local streets and roads.

Although freeways and highways are the top choice for surface transportation spending across all groups and regions in Orange County, we did find variation among some groups in prioritizing freeways and highways. For example, Republicans are more likely than Democrats (47% to 36%), whites are more likely than Latinos (42% to 27%), and residents under age 55 are more likely than older residents (41% to 33%) to think that freeways and highways should have precedence.

"What type of transportation project should have the top priority for public funds in Orange County?"

 

All
Adults

Region

Race / Ethnicity

North

South

White

Latino

Freeways and highways

39%

39%

38%

42%

27%

Light rail system

21

18

27

25

9

Local streets and roads

16

17

13

14

22

Public bus system

14

15

13

11

22

Carpool lanes

7

8

6

5

15

Other / Don't know

3

3

3

3

5


As noted above, residents overwhelmingly believe that roads and other infrastructure play an important role in the quality of life and economic vitality of Orange County; and they also believe that the major arteries throughout the county should have top priority when it comes to transportation funding. Are they confident that local governments in the county have the funding to maintain and prepare the county's infrastructure for the future? Most (53%) believe that local governments do have adequate funding 31 percent think they do not. Latinos are more likely than whites, and North County residents more likely than those in the South County, to say that their local government has adequate funding. The perception that funding is inadequate increases with age, education, and income. Democrats (40%) are more likely than Republicans (33%) to think funding is inadequate.

"Do you think that local government does or does not have adequate funding for the roads and other infrastructure projects that are needed to prepare Orange County for future growth?"

 

All
Adults

Region

Race / Ethnicity

North

South

White

Latino

Does

53%

55%

49%

49%

67%

Does not

31

30

33

35

22

Don't know

16

15

18

16

11