ROADS/BRIDGES: Washington Senate OK’s $15 billion in transportation revenue

An incremental gas tax increase is part of the deal

Funding News March 04, 2015
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Following up on our news story of Feb. 13 of this year, the Washington state Senate this Monday approved a $15 billion transportation revenue package that includes an incremental gas tax increase of 11.7 cents over the next three years.
 
The revenue bull passed on a bipartisan vote; negotiations with the state House of Representatives can now begin. In conjunction with the bill was the stipulation of which projects would receive funding.
 
“Even though there are issues with it that we might all have, this is a process,” said Sen. Steve Hobbs (D-Lake Stevens). “In the end, I think we will have something that is very good for the state of Washington.” Hobbs was one of four senators to proffer the bill.
 
As reported by Roads & Bridges earlier this year, Senate Transportation Committee chairman Sen. Curtis King (R-Yakima) was joined by Sen. Joe Fain (R-Auburn) and Democratic Sens. Marko Liias and Hobbs in suggesting more than $8 billion notated specifically for road projects that would include the North-South Freeway in Spokane and I-90 on Snoqualmie Pass, and puts money toward transit and local rail projects, as well as bike paths and pedestrian walkways.
 
Once through the House and on its way to the Governor’s desk, the tax increase would roll out in three stages, comprising a 5-cent increase this coming summer, followed by a 4.2-cent raise in 2016 and a final 2.5-cent increase in 2017.

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