According to the Evertt Herald, State Rep. Marko Liias will introduce a bill soon called the Local Transit Act. The bill is expected to open new transit funding options for agencies. A group called Transportation for Washington will be holding a press conference today to roll out the package but the expected form is a series of revenue raisers that would have to go to the local ballot before taking effect. Revenue options have already been announced and include: a “progressive” vehicle excise tax based on the value of the car, a car tab fee based on annual mileage, a tax based on a car’s fuel efficiency, and — most interesting — allowing local sales taxes to be applied to gasoline.
The Local Transit Act is unlikely to advance, and Josh Fiet of PubliCola theorizes that this group is attempting to get in front of a “‘roads & transit’ package that may come from Sen. transportation chair Sen. Mary Margaret Haugen.” If transit advocates have an alternative bill to support, they may be less willing to agree to roads funding especially without elements from that alternative incorporated into a roads package.
This bill represents a long term funding effort and is different from Liias’ earlier temporary car tab proposal.
Update at 3:30 pm: PubliCola has more from TCC about the politics behind this launch.