New Washington Research Council Report Examines Senate Transportation Plans

Hours before the House Transportation Committee hearing on the Senate’s transportation bills, the Washington Research Council has released its analysis of the Senate legislation.

The Senate’s opening bid in the transportation budget process includes a budget bill (ESSB 5988), a revenue bill (ESSB 5987), and eight policy reform bills. The package would increase the state gas tax by 11.7 cents over three years and would deliver $13.8 billion in new transportation spending through 2031. This would be the state’s first major transportation investment program since 2005.

Today’s House hearing will be on the the budget and revenue bills. Opportunity Washington strongly endorses passage of both. As the WRC concludes, the Senate legislation funds essential maintenance and preservation. In addition, 

…the package would fund many infrastructure projects that will help get goods to market and people to work. The economic costs of poor road conditions accrue broadly to Washington’s residents, businesses, and government. Reducing congestion, improving freight capacity, and enabling new growth would help make the state more competitive and make Washington a better place to live. The investment is past due.

It’s time to act. 

 

PSRC survey: Transportation is metro Seattle’s most important problem

The Puget Sound Regional Council today released a new and very timely survey. With the state Senate poised to vote on the state’s first comprehensive transportation package in a decade, the survey confirms the importance voters place on a functioning, safe, transportation system.

The key results:

Seventy-nine percent say traffic congestion on roads they use is a serious or critical problem.

Sixty percent say a lack of transportation alternatives is a serious or critical problem.

Fifty-one percent say the region is losing ground when it comes to transportation.

Ninety-five percent say it’s important for the State Legislature and the Governor to do something to address transportation this year.

Click here for more on the results of the survey of 1,500 voters.

Opportunity Washington: Priorities for Shared Prosperity has made transportation funding a critical objective. Read our recent Action Alert and go to our Connect page for information on the precarious state of our vital transportation networks.