Washington State Senate Chamber

Adoption of the conference committee report on the two-year transportation budget bill, Engrossed Senate Bill 5096, by the House 82-14-0-2 Thursday and the Senate 48-0-0-1 Friday sends the budget bill to the governor’s desk, unusually on time.

Here is the text of the conference report bill.

Staff analysis should be out within days.

8 Replies to “Legislature Passes Transportation Budget On Time”

  1. Island Transit won again! Great news:

    (9)(a) $1,000,000 of the multimodal transportation account—state appropriation is provided solely for the Everett connector service for Island and Skagit transit agencies. The amount provided in this subsection is contingent on Island Transit charging fares that achieve a farebox recovery ratio similar to comparable transit systems.
    (b) The amount provided in (a) of this subsection must be held in unallotted status until the office of financial management determines that fares have been both adopted and implemented by Island Transit that achieve a farebox recovery ratio similar to comparable transit systems. Island Transit must notify the office of financial management when it has met the requirements of this subsection.
    . . .
    (c) $2,300,000 of the amount provided in (a) of this subsection is provided solely for Island transit’s tri-county connector service for expenditure in 2015-2017.

    Great news. I know some don’t like the special treatment, but hey maybe one day we can redraw the Island County boundaries so they actually make sense…

    1. Good for them!

      Too bad our most populous and economically-vibrant counties don’t get that privilege.

      1. “Too bad our most populous and economically-vibrant counties don’t get that privilege.”

        You got Sound Transit and rightfully so and everybody knows how I feel about Sound Transit. This is a special deal that is a lot easier for state legislators than redrawing county lines.

        Oh and… and this is something you might want to tell your state legislators if you believe as I do the state mobility grants need more money. Things mobility grants pay for:

        *Bus Rapid Transit
        *Pedestrian Bridges
        *Park and Rides
        *New buses

        Something to fight for?

  2. Uh-oh.

    (23)(a) The legislature recognizes that the city of Mercer Island has unique access issues that require the use of Interstate 90 to leave the island and that this access may be affected by the I-90/Two-Way Transit and HOV Improvements project. One of the most heavily traveled on-ramps from Mercer Island to the westbound Interstate 90 general purpose lanes is from Island Crest Way. The department must continue to consult with the city of Mercer Island and the other signatories to the 1976 memorandum of agreement to preserve access provided to Mercer Island by the Island Crest Way on-ramp, and thus grandfather in the current use of the on-ramp for both high occupancy vehicles as well as vehicles seeking to access the general purpose lanes of Interstate 90. The department must consider all reasonable access solutions, including allowing all vehicles to use the Island Crest Way on-ramp to access the new high occupancy vehicle lane with a reasonable and safe distance provided for single-occupancy vehicles to merge into the general purpose lanes.[emphasis added]

    1. Eventually, there will be no public transit buses in that portion of the I-90 HOV lane. Then, it will just be a battle between that vocal minority from the south end of Mercer Island, and suburban HOV drivers from the rest of the eastside.

    2. So the upshot is it doesn’t matter much to transit except the buses may be slowed entering the freeway (which is nothing new to those who ride reverse peak), but the state may be breaking the law and may have to pay fines someday?

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