Transportation Revenue: Taking Us Backward, Not Forward, Is Not Acceptable

The state senate just released a proposal for new transportation revenue to fund the old transportation system—not a system for our future.

Their proposal ignores what it takes to ensure all people have an opportunity to get to where we need to go. It ignores biking and walking. It takes us back, not forward. We need you to speak up immediately and say it’s not good enough.

What do they propose?

  • NO money for bicycling.
  • NO money for pedestrians.
  • NO money for transit.
  • Nearly nothing for clean water infrastructure.
  • And only temporary local funding options to prevent more cuts to bus service.

We have a transportation crisis. Bridges are falling down, bicyclists and pedestrians are navigating dangerous streets, transit service is being cut in half, and toxic runoff from roads pollutes our waters.

The Senate’s plan to “fix” it? Increase the gas tax by 10.5 cents to raise $8.4 billion and spend nothing ($0.00) on the infrastructure that makes our communities better and healthier.

This is not a compromise.  It’s terrible. And we need you to stop it in its tracks. Today is the last day of the special session so we must get our message through immediately.

Contact your legislator.

By phone: Call 1-800-562-6000. The operator will route your message to your senator. Your message: I OPPOSE the Senate transportation revenue proposal because it doesn’t fund biking, walking, and transit.

By email: Enter your mailing address on the district finder form (choose Legislative, not Congressional) and follow the instructions on the site to reach a contact form.

Choose your state senator and include a copy to your state representatives. Your message:

A transportation revenue proposal without biking, walking, and transit is unacceptable.

Points you could include in your email:

  • A transportation system that really works for everyone must include bike, pedestrian, and transit investments.
  • Without these investments the proposed Senate transportation revenue package is absolutely unacceptable. Our transportation system is in crisis. Failure to propose a balanced transportation revenue package is irresponsible.
  • The House plan that includes $420 million for transit, $370 million for bike and pedestrian infrastructure, $156 million for clean water infrastructure, and a real local funding option for transit agencies is the bare minimum that must be included in the revenue package.

Transit, bike, pedestrian, and clean water infrastructure are critical for reducing congestion and creating stronger, healthier communities where you can live, work, learn, and connect safely to essential services. We need your voice NOW to say that loud and clear to your elected officials. For more background see our blog post on the Liias Amendment to the House transportation revenue proposal.

PS: After you email your legislators, contact your local elected officials too! City councils, county commissioners, school boards–if they want the transportation revenue package to include funds for Safe Routes to School, bike/pedestrian safety grants, and Complete Streets to help fund investments in local infrastructure they need to speak up NOW. Send this blog post to them and ask them to take action–they represent you too!

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One Comment

  1. John Bailo
    Posted June 12, 2013 at 11:36 am | Permalink

    The proper way to do bicycle infrastructure is with property taxes. Bicycle trails and pedestrian access are desirable and enhance values. They make streets safer. They are good for children, and for healthy adults.

    Washington State has an unfair property tax system. Much as everyone wants to dance around it, by proposing overbearing fees, or by hiking already high sales and business taxes, or by foolishly proposing income taxes, they fail to do the one obvious thing — remove the cap on property tax, reassess all land based on fair use, and start assessing people equitably.

    The problem of bike transit is the problem of an inherently unfair property tax situation in Washington, one that benefits only the entrenched long timer, and fails the majority of us who are new comers and productive employees.