The Seattle Times editorial board urges lawmakers to set aside their differences and work together to adopt a comprehensive transportation plan.
Washington has not made a significant investment in its transportation system in a decade. Caring for roads used to be one of those government functions that lawmakers could agree was essential to the state’s economy and the quality of life of every citizen.
They must summon the will to find common ground again.
A similar appeal to common sense came in this Yakima Herald Republic editorial.
Overhanging any tax increase is the prospect that it may be challenged at the ballot box; a phased-in gas tax prevailed at the polls in 2005, the last time it was raised. The state’s voters largely understand the need, and a smart, targeted proposal that institutes reforms and addresses mobility needs would pass voter muster if it came to that — and benefit the state in the long term.
Thursday’s proposal merely starts the process rolling. It is slated for hearings next week, and then it must be rectified with any proposal passed by the Democratic-controlled House. As a starting point, the Senate proposal is a sensible one that should help get the debate moving on transportation.