Washington only works when all people have an opportunity to get to where we need to go. Transit, bike, pedestrian, and clean water infrastructure are critical for reducing congestion and creating stronger, healthier communities.
We won’t bargain away these values.
But yesterday the senate released a proposal for new transportation revenue and how it would be spent.
- No money for transit.
- No money for bicycling.
- No money for pedestrians.
- Nearly nothing for clean water infrastructure.
- And only temporary local funding options to prevent more bus cuts.
This is not a compromise. It’s terrible. Today is the last day of the special session so we must get our message through immediately.
Email your legislators right now and tell them the Senate’s proposal is completely unacceptable >>
Across Washington State, our transportation system is in crisis. Bridges are falling down, transit service is being cut in half, bicyclists and pedestrians are navigating dangerous streets, and toxic runoff from roads is polluting our Puget Sound and killing our salmon.
The Senate’s plan to fix the crisis? 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.
There’s another plan in the House. $420 million for transit. $370 million for bike & pedestrian infrastructure. $156 million for clean water infrastructure. A local funding option that is a progressive and permanent solution to local transit agencies’ needs.
The House funding levels for transit, biking, walking, and clean water infrastructure is the bare-minimum. Anything less is unacceptable.
Email your legislators now >>
The I-5 Skagit River was designated as “functionally obsolete,” as “fracture critical,” and had a “sufficiency rating” of 57.4, but wasn’t designated as “structurally deficient.” What do all these designations and ratings mean? And how does the Skagit Bridge compare to other bridges across the state?
In the evening on Thursday, May 23, an over-sized truck hit the I-5 bridge across the Skagit River, causing a span of the bridge to collapse and fall into the river. Two cars with three people also fell into the river. Thankfully no one died or was seriously hurt, but all north-bound and south-bound traffic on the interstate has been stopped. Traffic is currently be diverted to cross the river on non-interstate bridges.
Here’s a quick run-down of many of the news articles and editorials over the last few days about the I-5 Skagit River Bridge collapse over the last few days.
As shocking images of the collapsed I-5 bridge over the Skagit River started to emerge, our thoughts were immediately with the people in the river and the first responders that quickly rescued them. The relief was great when we learned that injuries were minor and no life was lost.
How could this happen?
The simple answer is that the state doesn’t prioritize fixing our dangerous bridges nearly enough.
Across Washington State, there are 366 “structurally deficient” bridges. These are bridges with a critical defect in an element of the structure. And while it’s true that the Skagit River bridge wasn’t listed as “structurally deficient,” its “sufficiency rating” was low – a mere 57.4 out of 100 points. What’s even scarier, there are 759 bridges in worse condition.
Right now our Legislature has the opportunity to support a multi-billion dollar transportation investment proposal. We need to make sure that proposal includes more money to fix our broken bridges and crumbling roads.
Tell your legislators, prioritize fixing the transportation crises >>
Yesterday, Rep. Judy Clibborn, chair of the House Transportation Committee, proposed a multi-billion dollar state transportation revenue bill. Now it’s time to mobilize.
We have one simple goal: to make sure all Washingtonians have an equal opportunity to prosperity. And that starts with getting to a job, school, and wherever we all need to go — whether it’s by walking, biking, bus, rail, ferry, or car.
But declining funding has slashed bus service by as much as 43% across the state. And the state isn’t committing nearly enough resources to making our communities safer and more livable with sidewalks, crosswalks, greenways, and protected bikeways.
While Rep. Clibborn’s proposal is the start to the conversation, there’s lots of room for improvement.
The first hearing is next Monday and we need your help. Please send a letter to the House Transportation Committee members now to ask them to improve the proposal by prioritizing fixing our crumbling roads and bridges, increasing transit funding, and making our communities more sustainable.
Send your letter to the Transportation Committee now >>
Rep. Judy Clibborn
On February 20, Representative Judy Clibborn, Chair of the House Transportation Committee, proposed a $10 billion transportation revenue bill, funded primarily by a 10-cent gas tax increase. This proposal is a good conversation starter about the need for investing in transportation.
Prior efforts have identified a $21 to $50 billion funding gap to repair our roads and bridges, build new highway projects, construct infrastructure to cleanup toxic road-water runoff, restore bus service across the state, and adequately invest in bicycle and pedestrian projects.
Here’s a little background on Rep. Clibborn’s proposal:
While Rep. Clibborn’s package is a start, it does little to address many of the needs identified by the Transportation For Washington.