Letters to the Editor

Transportation budget failed for good reasons | Letters

The transportation budget in Olympia that failed to pass in “double overtime” failed for good reasons. Did you want to help Oregon pay for the CRC, the mis-designed Columbia River Crossing?

Did you want to send your Washington state taxes to the “out of money” Portland Light Rail Project? No!

And yes, Washington state sure does have transportation projects that need funding. The point is that our state’s record on transportation efficiency and accountability is poor and needs to be addressed. Did you think that the 10.5-cents-per-gallon was going to fund roads? The proposed budget contained lots of your dollars for bike trails, pedestrian paths and other things.

Before we reach further into taxpayers’ pockets, we must confront the reasons that make infrastructure and new construction so expensive. We need to require WSDOT to report to the Legislature on engineering errors to avoid future problems.

I want to thank our State Rep. Linda Kochmar for her leadership, and guts, in successfully concluding this session. The Legislative session resulted in no increase in taxes and no increase in the gas tax. Taxes that had a “sunset” provision were ended. That means no increased water tax, no increased beer tax, Nno additional B&O tax.

No increase in tuition at our community colleges or our state colleges (for the first time in 17 years).

There is $1 billion in additional funding going to our schools.

This session was filled with critical decisions. And yes, our roads still need work. Next session will bring new proposals.

The near miraculous bipartisan Senate set priorities to live within our means and not raise taxes on already struggling families. The regular and “double overtime” sessions tallied 300 votes. Linda Kochmar, our 30th District representative, was there for all 300 votes.

Thank you, Linda. You represented us well.

Maureen Bernardy, Federal Way

 

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