On page 36, after line 6, insert the following: “(29) The legislature is committed to the funding and construction of R8A in a timely manner, supporting the construction of Sound Transit’s East Link. The department shall complete the process of negotiating the airspace lease with Sound Transit, including appropriate and independent facility asset assessments required to accommodate the use and funding of the I-90 center roadway for East Link in support of East Link project milestones.”
EFFECT: Provides legislative commitment to constructing the R8A center lane and Sound Transit East Link project on the I-90 corridor, and directs the Department of Transportation to negotiate the airspace lease with Sound Transit to facilitate the project.
This is in direct conflict with the House’s provision to effectively block WSDOT negotiations with Sound Transit over the center roadway. Assuming the Senate version wins out over the House’s, this would remove the procedural obstacle to East Link and leave only the funding one.
My source says the vote on the amendment was approximately 29-19; when they arrive, we’ll watch with interest the Yeas and Nays on this pretty straight up-or-down vote on East Link.