I think it’s time we take some power away from the people and allow the politicians to make the decisions the people are too cheap to make.
Why? Because the average person will not vote for anything if it increases their taxes, even if it benefits them. All they say is, “How much is it going to cost me?”
Instead, what people need to start thinking is, “What is it going to cost me in the future if we don’t do something now?”
What this region needs is a consolidated transportation agency that is responsible for coming up with a solution that addresses the Puget Sound’s needs — and come up with a solution to pay for it.
If it’s going to cost the taxpayers, so be it. If we wait, the price only goes up. Eventually the region will end up doing something, but it will only cost billions more if they wait.
I understand some folks want us to get out of our cars and start commuting to work differently. Well how are we going to do that? The buses are full, the trains are full, and the park and rides are full.
There was a news bit about the Sounder Train from Everett to Seattle. They say most of the time, it’s standing room only. The Auburn Park and Ride is so full, folks are parking in the residential streets.
So if you want us to start commuting in other ways, we need more means to commute. Problem is, every time the politicians put a vote out to get it funded, it fails.
Many folks do not commute, so they don’t understand the benefits of a regional transporation plan. All they think is: Well it’s going to cost me $50 a year in more taxes.
Well, $50 a year in taxes is a bargain to what we are now paying for gas. Also, if they approved the transportation solutions that were put forth years ago, it would have been done now or in a few years, and the costs would have been billions less then what’s being proposed now.
The politicians just need to come up with a solution and implement it. If we leave it up to the voters, they will turn it down. Heck, voters don’t even approve school levies half the time.
I ask several folks why they voted against various school levies and their responses are all: “Well I don’t have kids so why should I pay for it?” The same goes for mass transit: “Well I don’t take the bus so why should I pay for it?”
Now that gas is $4 to $5 a gallon, folks are flocking to mass transit, and it’s being over-burdened.
I consider this an emergency and during an emergency some decisions need to be made, not discussed, then voted on, then the vote fails, then we wait a few years, then we discuss, then we vote, then the vote fails, then we look around and realize we are hosed because we didn’t do something in the past.
We vote politicians in to make the decisions we can’t. If everything has to be taken to a vote, why do we even have politicians?
Some of you probably wonder if I commute. Well I opened a business three miles from my house. My wife is graduating with a teaching degree and she is looking in the vicinity. So no, I don’t take mass transit, yet I vote yes on every mass transit bill that comes through.
We don’t have kids, yet I vote on every school levy. Why? Becuase I see the value of doing stuff now vs. waiting.
Jon Moore, Federal Way