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California voters do not like the new gas tax and vehicle fee increases, poll finds

A construction worker digs next to a roadway at Los Angeles International Airport. (Barbara Davidson / Los Angeles Times)
A construction worker digs next to a roadway at Los Angeles International Airport. (Barbara Davidson / Los Angeles Times)

A majority of California voters oppose the state's recently passed gas tax and vehicle fee increases that will pay for state roads and expand mass transit, according to a poll released Friday.

About 58% of registered voters surveyed said they oppose the increases that were recently approved by the Legislature and Gov. Jerry Brown, according to the IGS Poll, a survey by the Institute of Governmental Studies at UC Berkeley. About 35% said they support the new taxes and fees. 

The increases approved in April will generate about $5.2 billion annually during the first 10 years to start paying for a $130-billion backlog of road and highway repairs.

The poll found that nearly three times as many respondents — 39% — said they strongly oppose the higher taxes and fees as those who said they strongly support it.

A large majority of respondents who identified themselves as strongly liberal said they support the change.

But overall, they poll found, the new law is opposed by big majorities of Republicans and no-party-preference respondents, political conservatives and moderates, members of all major races and ethnic groups, men, women, and people over 30.

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