Gas tax increase encouraged in Wash.

News AASHTO Journal December 29, 2004
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A coalition of Washington state business, labor, environmental and civic leaders have identified some $8 billion in needed tran

A coalition of Washington state business, labor, environmental and civic leaders have identified some $8 billion in needed transportation spending and proposed the state legislature approve a 10-cent per gal gas tax increase to help raise the money.


The Transportation Working Group is made up of a spectrum of Washington state business and industry leaders including representatives of Boeing, Microsoft, Weyerhaeuser, Puget Sound Energy and area chambers of commerce. Also among the group are former U.S. Sen. Slade Gordon and representatives from such organizations as the Washington State Labor Council, the Municipal League of King County, AAA Washington, 1000 Friends of Washington and Washington Conservation Voters.


The group was convened by a Seattle think tank. The Discovery Institute, and was supported by a grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.


The proposed 10-cent increase would bring the state gas tax to 38 cents per gal and would come on the heels of a five-cent gas tax increase approved by the state last year. The group also has recommended additional revenue from other sources, including license- and weight-fee increases, tolls or other user fees. The group has recommended that priority be given to the replacement of the Alaskan Way Viaduct and the Highway 520 floating bridge.


The group also called for improved integration and consolidation of the transportation agencies that serve the Seattle area.


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