David Chiu's Proposed Vehicle License Fee Could Net City $70M — But Requires 'Hail Mary'of a Senate Bill to Pass

The Vehicle License Fee proposed this week by Supervisor David Chiu could net the city as much as $70 million. And the lottery ticket you bought this week could net you $70 million, too.

Okay, that's a bit of a stretch, and the VLF won't benefit local liquor stores. But just as a billiards shot grows ever less likely with each additional ricochet, the city's would-be windfall requires a number of interlocked events to come to pass — and all of it centers around the passage of a Senate bill already vetoed by the governor in 2006. Its current chances were assessed as “probably a Hail Mary” by Assemblyman Tom Ammiano.

Perhaps that's why Chiu's legislative aide, David Noyola, emphasized that the city isn't counting its money yet. “But we feel that if we were to put something on the ballot locally and it were to pass, the local electorate might help in the effort to get the bill approved at the state level.”

Whether San Franciscans will approve a measure that would cost them hundreds of dollars apiece remains to be seen, however. Americans, naturally, are all in favor of more government services, but not so fond of paying for them. Also, lots of us believe in angels.

Here's what has to happen for the city to get its much-needed millions:

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