In the wake of voters rejecting a sales tax increase to preserve Pierce Transit service, outlying areas that voted heavily against the increase (and have lost most or all of their service) are trying to opt out of the Public Transportation Benefit Area (PTBA) entirely. Sumner is the latest casualty, joining DuPont, Bonney Lake, Buckley, and Orting. Background on the (complicated) PTBA exit process here. Routes 409, 496, and 497*, which connect various neighborhoods to Sounder, would be eliminated, potentially aggravating existing parking problems at stations.
Interestingly, this contraction may also affect vanpools. PT Spokesman Lars Erickson tells me that while vanpools that either originate or terminate within the shrunken boundary are fine, those that originate and terminate outside the PTBA may have to be eliminated under the law, pending a legal opinion the agency has requested.
The other interesting wrinkle is that all the cities above but Buckley lie in the Sound Transit district. Sumner is actually represented on the ST board by Mayor David Enslow. I have an email in to Mr. Enslow to see if he has any plans to try to mitigate the loss of PT service.
*The 497 serves the Pierce County portion of Auburn, connecting the Lakeland Hills subdivision to Sounder. The loss of Sumner would isolate Auburn geographically, and by law PTBAs must be contiguous.