Evan Siroky at Tacoma Tomorrow has a detailed report on Pierce Transit’s long range budget situation, and it isn’t good. PT’s reserves run out in 2012, at which point the bottom falls out.
Using current revenue sources, annual service hours will fall by 57% – from 622,000 to 265,000, as the number of bus routes plunges from 51 to 23. The end of service would move from midnight to 9pm on weekdays, and from 10pm to 8 or 9pm on weekends. Weekend headways would increase to 60 minutes.
As the map above indicates, there would also be a substantial reduction in the areas PT serves. Unlike in King County, the PT district is not equivalent with the County. These unserved areas would still be paying taxes to support PT; should the lack of service persist, they would likely pursue the time-consuming and complex “deannexation” process.
PT also provides 33% of service from Tacoma to Olympia, and that would end.
Metro and Community Transit faced potential 20% cuts when their sales tax collapsed. Spokesman Lars Erickson explains that PT’s would be much deeper because “Pierce county experienced the recession earlier and deeper.” The long term deficit is about $50m/year. PTCT saved about $72m through 2012 through staff cuts, fare increases, and deferral of most capital expenses.
The good news is that Pierce Transit assesses a 0.6% sales tax, so they have a further 0.3% they can access with a public vote even if the legislature never comes to the rescue. The chart below the jump pitches what could be done with that money: a gradual increase to 638,000 hours, including a fourth major trunk route. The Pierce Transit board is likely to decide on a course of action this summer.
See also the TNT on this subject.
On Monday evening, the Pierce County Board of Commissioners will hold a hearing on ending sale of ticket books to the general public effective January 1. This is obviously a casualty of the ORCA rollout, and would sadly mean the end of the buy-10-get-one-free deal these books offered. From the press release:
Tickets would still be available for sale to human/social service providers, school districts and administrators of the Pierce County Superior Court Juror Ticket Program.
These groups would be able to purchase:
• Regular adult tickets for $1.75 each
• Discounted tickets for $0.75 each for use by youth, senior citizens, individuals with disabilities and individuals with a valid Medicare card…
Human/social service providers, schools and the Pierce County Superior Court would be required to preorder and prepay for tickets.
Board meetings usually begin at 4:00 p.m. and are held in the Main Training Room (The Rainier Room) on the first floor of Pierce Transit’s Training Center, Building 5, directly across 96th Street from our Maintenance Base. Address: 3720 96th St SW, Lakewood, WA.
According to spokesperson Rochelle Ogershok, Metro has no plans to discontinue ticket book sales.
Sound Transit recently released their Second Quarter Ridership Report. Overall boardings were up over the same quarter last year, as usual, partly due to ever-increasing service levels.
Pierce County and South King buses and trains experienced a general decline in ridership, aside from Tacoma Link. As these subareas make up the vast majority of Sounder ridership, Sounder boardings overall took a hit.
The final version of the 2009 Service Implementation Plan (SIP) has hit the street. It details all the planned service changes through next February, as well as provisional changes through 2013. It’s also the most thorough data source about each route that I’ve seen released by any transit agency.
A cursory glance at the ridership numbers tells you something about the transit market in various corridors. Specifically, the 545 and 550 together carried 10,112 people a day in 2008. Not every 545 rider will end up on East Link, but then I’m counting nothing from the 554, 555, or 556, nor all the Bellevue/Redmond traffic on Metro.
The anti-transit Eastside Transportation Association slams East Link and prefers BRT on I-405 instead. Somewhat less ridiculously, Eastside Rail Now wants to emphasize the BNSF North/South rail corridor.
So let’s add up the riders. The 532, 535, 560, 564, and 565 feed Bellevue and Redmond from a huge area, Everett all the way down to Federal Way. Total ridership on these routes? 6,171.*
Dedicated believers, if they’re so inclined, can always dismiss ridership projections as biased by the agency that released them. But they can’t as easily dismiss the empirical data from Sound Transit’s ongoing experiment of connecting Eastside jobs to both densely packed residents in Seattle and widely dispersed residents to the North and South. Add in the fact that you have even more traffic passing in the opposite direction — Bellevue and Redmond to transit-optimized locations in DT Seattle — and it becomes a no-brainer.
* There are also a few Metro and CT routes in this corridor.
Pierce Transit, to observe their 30th anniversary of emerging from Tacoma Transit, is launching a PT Tomorrow campaign, which is being billed as a potential total redesign of the route system.
There are basically no details about what kind of changes, but that may be because the first step is to gather public comment about the current system and what’s missing from it. A series of public meetings will run from October 6 to November 12, where PT invites you to comment on the following:
- Prioritizing service. The economic recession has shown us that we can’t always have everything.
- Where you’d like to see improvements and least like to see reductions. Destinations? Time of day? Frequency? This is your opportunity.
- Regional connections. Travel beyond Pierce County is important to a growing number of transit riders.
Of course, you can also comment electronically. This input will lead to a plan in April 2010.
Pierce Transit is in an unusually good position, given that their sales tax is only at 0.6%. That means a 50% tax revenue increase is available given local political will.
- Transportation for America’s new report, “Stranded at the Station“, won’t break any new ground for readers of this blog, but provides a nice capsule argument for why transit is important, and does a roundup of the cuts facing agencies everywhere. Happily, Washington agencies are not among the top 10 in projected deficits.
- Jordan Talge, a law student and writer for NorthwestHub.org, breaks down the legal hurdles for Kemper Freeman’s anti-East Link lawsuit.
- Pierce County Executive Pat McCarthy withdraws a mayoral endorsement, alledgedly over the candidate’s criticism of the Sounder extension through the Dome District.
- KUOW reviews Light Rail station art.
- More woes at Kitsap Transit.
- The first documented graffiti on Link (H/T: Gordon).
- Honolulu City Council targets riding while smelly. This is based, shockingly, on King County Metro policy! (See #17 here).
- Link fare enforcement in full effect.
[UPDATE: See excerpt of Board selection rules at the bottom.]
In our Greg Nickels endorsement, we alluded to the possibility of some sort of Sound Transit crisis in the future, the idea being that we would have wanted Nickels in a position of power should that happen. Now, with Nickels out and either McGinn or Mallahan receiving an automatic virtually assured seat on the Sound Transit board when they take office, it’s important to recognize why establishment support for ST is necessary.
Although it’s the opinion of this blog that Sound Transit is a very well-run public agency, there are three basic things that could cause serious problems for the buildout:
- The Economy. Sound Transit got a AAA credit rating by being conservative about allocating its revenue streams. That said, a weak recovery in sales tax revenue would put further pressure on the agency’s budget, and Japan-style stagnation could make it very hard to achieve all the Sound Transit 2 objectives.
- Tunneling. Sound Transit’s sole tunneling experience — through Beacon Hill — was not a happy one. They were on schedule, barely, despite a huge amount of padding in the plan. It may have been a problem with that particular contractor, but it bears watching as they begin a much larger tunneling project to Roosevelt, and possibly under Bellevue.
- Political Risk. We’ve covered this a lot before, but there are still powerful interests not at all pleased with having to give up the express lanes on I-90, or that seek to extract transit funding for use on state road projects. Moreover, there are still plenty of people who self-identify as transit advocates who think that reorganizing transit agencies is a good idea. This kind of maneuver, which has support in the legislature, would wreak havoc on ongoing projects.
There’s no reason to be overly alarmed about any of these potential problems, because they haven’t yet materialized. And, of course, all large infrastructure projects have risk. Nevertheless, it would be a mistake to assume that we can doze off until 2016 without making sure that the right leadership and the right politicians are in place.
My first real foray into the world of local rail transit was my interest in improving Amtrak Cascades service to Portland – I had waited behind freight trains plenty on various trips, and I started trying to figure out why our local intercity rail service was so unreliable and slow. I found many projects listed by WSDOT as ways to improve Cascades, and one caught my eye – Point Defiance Bypass. Through a partnership with Sound Transit to extend Sounder to Lakewood, new track would offer a more direct route from Tacoma southward, removing passenger trains from the freight snarl, and cutting five minutes off my trip – more than any other single project offered.
In the intervening time, Central Link has gone from groundbreaking all the way to being open.
No, really. When I first heard about the Sound Transit portion of this project, I don’t even think that there had been any neighborhood meetings for Link yet. It’s been that long.
And a small band of people in Tacoma want to delay finishing Sounder even longer – for a new reason, almost like the last, but just different enough to spur a new round of editorials about ‘destroying’ a part of Tacoma that’s mostly a couple of surface parking lots and a freeway overpass. Don’t believe me? Look for yourself. In the upper right, Freighthouse Square, where Sounder currently terminates. In the lower left, the curve of the old railway to be reused. In between? A handful of businesses, empty lots, an interstate highway. A beautiful urban village to be ruined by a train.
Sound Transit will build an overpass for Sounder – and use earth embankments on either side of South Tacoma Way. The latest opposition tactic is to demand a concrete structure with posts instead – to offer a dry place for the homeless to sleep at night. They wring their hands at light rail’s neighborhood-friendly concrete pylons, and compare to their future pile of dirt, when of course Link was no different – it used earth embankments in several places as well.
Do I seem sarcastic? That’s because this is a farce. These are anti-transit activists drumming up opposition to Sound Transit through typical fear, uncertainty and doubt. They know Pierce County doesn’t have adequate transit service yet, and they know that if Lakewood gets regular rail service, a pretty large group of people will start realizing how useful this is.
Two completed stations sit waiting for Sounder service. This will offer help for commuters into both Tacoma and Seattle. The construction area is not walkable or pedestrian friendly, the benefit of transit service far outweighs any loss. Please, please stop listening to these people.
by GREG NICKELS, Mayor of Seattle and Chair of the Sound Transit Board
This is the last installment in my recollections leading up to the opening of Sound Transit’s first Light Rail line tomorrow. In six previous installments I have reflected on the highs and lows of the twenty-one years that I have been involved in this epic journey.
In many ways, the ground breaking on November 8, 2003 ended the political debate over whether mass transit would serve Seattle (though ST 2 engendered a vigorous debate on whether it should be extended beyond Sound Move).
In my first month as Seattle Mayor I gathered all the City staff working on the project and let them know our job was to team with Sound Transit to make sure the system got built — as promised to the voters. This was a relief to many staff who really did not know whether the previous administration supported or opposed building the project.
Once we broke ground, I enjoyed visiting the construction impacted neighborhoods twice a month and talking with the property owners, shopkeepers and residents; trying to anticipate, prevent and solve problems. In doing this I was taking a page from Seattle City Councilmember George Benson’s work during the construction of the Downtown Seattle transit Tunnel in the 1980s.
Like grief, dealing with a huge project in your neighborhood is dealt with in distinct stages. Fear, anticipation, resignation, relief and excitement among them. Seventy-five percent of the small businesses along the MLK portion of the route at the start of construction are still there – I’m proud of that. The street has been transformed, as has the neighborhood. And the presence of Light Rail will connect the people of the Rainier Valley neighborhood to lots of new and exciting job and educational opportunities – just a short train ride away.
Columbia City is approaching this opportunity most creatively, going so far as to have pedicabs available to whisk people from the station to their historic business district nearby where Light Rail riders can enjoy great restaurants, a farmer’s market and theater.
This first line will be warmly embraced, especially when the thirteenth station – SeaTac Airport, opens late this year. But it is only the beginning. The next line, north from downtown to the University of Washington, received its $813 million Full Funding Grant Agreement from the Federal Transit Administration in December and has already broken ground. Those two underground stations on Capitol Hill and at Husky Stadium will basically mark the completion of Sound Move and will open in 2016.
After the defeat of the infamous doomed shotgun marriage of Roads and Transit in 2007, there was little political appetite to explore a transit ballot for 2008. Given our experience in 1996 (and $4/gallon gasoline), I was convinced that the 2008 Presidential ballot was the right one for light rail. In addition I believed that the Legislature would take away the region’s ability to place transit on any future ballot (as they had stopped Sound Transit in 2006) and take the taxing authority for highways. Fortunately there was a core group of ST Board members willing to engage the issue and we went to work. Ultimately on July 24th all but two boardmembers agreed upon a plan and it went on the ballot.
Sound Transit 2 passed with a 57.02% yes vote on November 4, 2008 – 60.5% in King, 54.21% in Snohomish and 49.08% in Pierce County. Light Rail will expand north from the University to Northgate and on out to Lynnwood, south of the airport to Federal Way and east across Lake Washington to Bellevue and out to Redmond. These projects will be complete in 15 years. I have no illusions that there will be no further challenges in building such an extensive set of projects (such as the current economic crisis) – there is a lot of work ahead! But when complete, 70% of the residences and 85% of the jobs in Metro Seattle will be within an easy bus ride, bike ride or walk of a rail station. With a capacity of one million passengers a day, it will transform how we get around.
I’ve wondered — how often does someone get to see through such a journey in their career? From the 1988 advisory ballot through passage of ST 2 and opening the initial line it has been an amazing adventure. While certainly not easy (1995-96 and 2000-01 come to mind!), it has been an incredible honor to work with the elected officials on the ST Board, the staff (Joni Earl for instance) and particularly the interested citizens (Mona Lee and Dick Burkhart come to mind) who have engaged, often passionately in this saga. I do wish the voters had approved the Forward Thrust plan in 1968, but what a ride my generation would have missed! For someone who wants to make a difference in people’s lives it has been the chance of a lifetime.
The author is the mayor of Seattle.
by GREG NICKELS, Mayor of Seattle and Chair of the Sound Transit Board
With just over ten weeks until Sound Transit Light Rail opens, this is my fourth installment on how we got here.
After the three County Councils agreed to place the RTA plan on the ballot, the RTA’s first actual service began on January 28, 1995. Called TRY Rail, this demonstration of commuter rail service carried passengers between Tacoma and Seattle for a few weeks and then between Everett and Seattle. In total, 35,000 passengers rode TRY Rail. Commuter rail was one of the elements of the ballot measure.
The first vote to decide Mass Transit for King County in 25 years (and the first ever for Pierce and Snohomish Counties) was scheduled for a March 14, 1995 Special Election. In addition to commuter rail, the plan contained a mostly surface light rail system connecting Tacoma to Seattle, north to Lynnwood (actually 164th St SW) and east across Lake Washington to Bellevue and Redmond.
The campaign in favor was called “Citizens for Sound Transit,” and the opponents, “Families Against Congestion and Taxes.” Early polls looked favorable with some 60% of respondents likely to vote yes. According to the Pro campaign FAQ:
There are basically two opponents: Ed Hansen, the Mayor of Everett and Kemper Freeman, Jr., a Bellevue developer. Mayor Hansen opposes this project because it doesn’t include light rail to Everett – in other words, it’s not enough. Freeman opposes this plan because he thinks it’s too much.
The campaign was nasty and the proponents often found themselves on the defensive, responding to FACT’s charges that the ($6,700,000,000) cost was too high (compared with buses and freeways), the ridership numbers inflated and it would not put a dent in congestion.
Despite carrying King County 50.3% to 49.7%, getting 61.7% in Seattle and winning in Lake Forest Park and Mercer Island, the measure got only 42.8% in Bellevue, lost Pierce County and did so poorly in Snohomish County (especially Everett) that Prohibition looked popular in comparison. It went down RTA district-wide 46.5% yes to 53.3% no. The region rejected mass transit. History repeated itself – mass transit was once again treated by many politicians in Olympia and the region as political roadkill. It looked like another dead end for rail transit.
In 1979 Pierce Transit was formed when Pierce County voters approved a 0.3% sales tax increase for public transit. PT currently levels a .6% sales tax and operates more than 50 routes, paratransit, and vanpools as well partnering with Sound Transit to operate Tacoma Link and some Sound Transit Express buses.
Also in 1979, Amtrak introduced the Superliner rail cars on the Empire Builder from Seattle to Chicago and later that same year, Amtrak discontinued the North Coast Hiawatha from Seattle to Minneapolis.
While the legislature continues to shoot down R8A, I did some investigation in regards to the Amtrak rail funding and its dramatic change mentioned here previous. It appears that 98% of the rail capital project funding has been completely eliminated. The remaining 2% is going to very, very small projects, such as Tacoma Rail engine facility improvements, a new connection for BNSF/Tacoma Rail in Roy, and a spur to a cement plant in Everett. Yippe…
Stanwood Station however did keep its funding and Amtrak Cascades will serve the station when it opens this Fall. I have heard that the funding for Leavenworth Station has been eliminated but I have not found anything that confirms this officially.
24 NEW SECTION. Sec. 225. FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION–
25 RAIL–PROGRAM Y–OPERATING
26 Multimodal Transportation Account–State
27 Appropriation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .$34,933,000
28 The appropriation in this section is subject to the following
29 conditions and limitations:
30 (1) $29,091,000 of the multimodal transportation account–state
31 appropriation is provided solely for the Amtrak service contract and
32 Talgo maintenance contract associated with providing and maintaining
33 the state-supported passenger rail service. Upon completion of the
34 rail platform project in the city of Stanwood, the department shall
35 provide daily Amtrak Cascades service to the city.
36 (2) Amtrak Cascade runs may not be eliminated.
p. 27 SSB 5352.
1 (3) The department shall begin planning for a third roundtrip
2 Cascades train between Seattle and Vancouver, B.C. by 2010
While the state will “aggressively” seek federal funding from various stimulus sources, the damage and lack of credibility has been done. What the state has effectively done is damage any chance of securing funding because all projects require matching funding from the state. With the state effectively killing this funding, this no longer gives the state the chance to receive any stimulus funding.
While I understand the need and reasoning for reducing the budget, a lot more critical things were cut. I am still at a lost however how I-405 manages to get a several million dollar increase in funding, along with the I-5 Pierce County HOV lanes while rail and other projects are being cut.
We talk about alternatives and ways to reduce GHG but when it comes to making progress on doing that goal, a few select people make sure that it does not happen. In this situation, we, the people of Washington, Oregon, and British Columbia all want alternatives to driving. We all want an alternative to flying. The Amtrak Cascades service and passenger rail are our ways to that goal. Until we have people in our government that also see that goal, we will never go beyond what we have currently for many more years.
We all know by 2012, gas prices will be at record levels. By 2012, we could have had a very good and integrated transportation system, ranging from buses, carpool, light-rail, and passenger rail. Each mode works together but people will not make the critical change needed until the services are provided. The Cascades program will be very critical and by not investing now, we will lose any forward movement at such a critical time.
Nearly every state is looking forward to adding more passenger rail, except for our region, where roads are now king of our society.
For those whom hoped the state would change its act in regards to rail transportation, I am steadily learning that you can not count on Washington State to make the commitment that involves transportation, unless it is roads. Other states however are jumping hard and fast to get on stimulus funding and are matching funds to ensure they get funding for projects. What are we doing however….?
The Puget Sound Regional Council has released their approved project list to receive funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).
The only change from the initial staff recommendations is that the Metro hybrid bus purchase fund has been increased by $3m, by zeroing out funding for a Burien TOD project (I think it’s this project). The big relief, though, is clinching the Metro vehicle maintenance subsidy, which should plug the 2009 deficit, increasing the time for someone to save Metro before armageddon in 2010.
I’ve asked Metro if the $25m for maintenance does count directly against the $29m deficit, and will follow up when I get an answer.
The full FTA list (and FHA list) is below the jump.
The PRSC has released the preliminary list of projects that will receive FTA grants from the stimulus bill in our area. Here’s a map of the projects, and here’s the pdf of the list. There’s a lot of money for new buses, $1 million for the monorail (!!!) and even $341,000 for preventative maintence on the SLU streetcar. There’s $4.6 million for North Link acceleration and $4.6 million for track and signals on the M street to Lakewood line that Sounder and Amtrak want to install as part of the Point Defiance Bypass.
Funding by agency and project below the fold.
Here’s the “short list” of stimulus projects for the PSRC‘s FTA grants. The PSRC expects to get $135 million in FTA money for these projects. As you notice, there’s $316 million in projects here, so the actual grants are 42.5% of the list here in terms of cost. Thanks again to Rick Olson of the PSRC.
Continue reading “Transit Stimulus Short List”
Currently, Most of the transit measures that was out for rail, buses, etc are passing except for a few.
California High Speed Rail – 50.6% Yes – 49.4% No with 30% reporting in
Sound Transit Prop 1 – King County 61.9% Yes – 38.1% No – Snohomish County 55.4% Yes – 44.5% No. Pierce County 50.82% Yes – 49.18% No.
I-985 – 39.6% Yes – 60.6% No
New Mexico Transit (Including RailRunner) – Winner
Kansas City Light Rail -Defeated
Honolulu Elevated Commuter Rail – 53.0% Yes – 47.0% No
St. Louis Metrolink Tax – 48.0% No – 52.0% Yes
LA MTA Sales Tax – 64.5% Yes – 35.5% No
Sacramento Streetcar – Passing per SF Gate
BART – Passing per SF Gate
While we will likely know who the next President is within a few hours, we won’t find out the results of our state elections (Governor, I-985) or the regional transit expansion measure that we strongly support (Proposition 1). King County, the state’s largest, expects to count only about 39% of the ballots tonight.
But of course we can look at the returns as they come in and try to predict the outcome. For background, the Sound Transit District covers part of King, Snohomish, and Pierce Counties. The harsh reality is that King will likely have to pull up lackluster support from Snohomish and Pierce voters. If — and this could be a big if — Snohomish and Pierce Counties report 43% and 44% respectfully (as they did in 2007’s Roads & Transit vote), then it’s projected that a 55.5% vote in King County would lead to the measure passing by 51%-49% overall. Now, obviously, if we get worse results in Snohomish and Pierce, then King voters will have a steeper hill to climb.
When the polls close at 8pm you’ll be able to see results at this page. Results will come hourly until around 1am. Again, we probably won’t know for sure if the measure passes tonight so be patient.
The Mass Transit Now campaign boosting Proposition 1 is throwing a party at Kells Irish Pub near Pike Place Market. I think some of us bloggers will be there, so stop by. It’s right near the Showbox!
How do the polls look?
Well, for Proposition 1 we don’t have much information. Older polls showed massive support for a light rail expansion, but there are concerns that the financial crisis will hurt Prop. 1. The latest meaningful poll pegs support at 47% Yes, 33% No, and 20% Undecided with likely voters (including leaners). The wisdom is that undecideds tend to break against initiatives. That poll was taken on October 18 and 19. Things could have shifted for or against the measure, and the likely voter model that SurveyUSA uses may not account for a changing electorate that Obama might bring to Puget Sound.
But this looks much, much better than a poll taken from the same pollster for last year’s Roads & Transit measure around the same time last year, which ended up failing. That poll found 30% Yes, 32% No, and 37% Undecided but unfortunately didn’t include leaners — so it’s not an apples-to-apples camparison.
I-985 has had more polling from SurveyUSA. A poll taken 10/26 – 10/27 found 29% Yes, 42% No, 29% Undecided. Another taken 10/30 – 11/02 found 33% Yes, 45% No, 23% Undecided. Because these polls are from the same pollster and are recent we can extrapolate that there is at least some solid opposition to Tim Eyman’s bad initative. Thank goodness.
In terms of Governor, polls are extremely close. We have endorsed Gregoire for Governor because Dino Rossi’s policies are dangerous to transit.
How did the Proposition 1 campaigns do?
The No campaign, NoToProp1.Org, has mostly relied on a massive amount of funding from Kemper Freeman, Jr. Just a few small contributions have been made. The campaign raised $152,725. The No campaign started a bit late, and invested mostly in radio ads as far as we can tell. They have had some online ads and of course have yard signs here and there.
The Yes campaign, Mass Transit Now, has received funding mainly from engineering companies, unions, and environmental groups. It has also received dozens of small contributions made online. The Yes campaign raised substantially more money with $892,623 in the bank.
The Yes campaign focused on grassroots operations, targeting farmer’s markets initially and canvassing Seattle and urban parts of the Eastside, Pierce County, and Snohomish County. The campaign reached voters through phone banking and multiple mailers (of which the No campaign had none). The Sierra Club, FUSE, TCC, and other major contributors to the campaign supplied volunteers and space for phone banking. The Yes campaign has also appeared on the radio, though the buy seemed smaller, and they have had online ads as well. There was far more Yes signage around.
The Seattle P-I, The Tacoma News Tribune, and the Stranger endorsed Proposition 1. The Seattle Times suggested voting No.
So that’s where things are. Today it’s in the hands of the voters.
As in the primary, STB is endorsing candidates and initiatives for the November general election. This is officially a non-partisan blog, so we’ll be evaluating candidates based on their attitude toward transit.
Strong Endorsements (Strongly pro-transit)
Sound Transit Proposition 1: YES
U.S. Congress, 1st District: Jay Inslee
U.S. Congress, 6th District: Norm Dicks
Washington State Attorney General: John Ladenburg
10th District Senate: Linda Haddon
21st District House: Mary Helen Roberts
41st District Senate: Fred Jarrett
44th District House, Position 1: Hans Dunshee
47th District House, Position : Geoff Simpson
U.S. President/Vice President: Barack Obama/Joe Biden
Lukewarm Endorsements (Transit-neutral, but far better than their opponents).
Governor: Christine Gregoire
Secretary of State: Sam Reed
41st District House, Position 1: Marcie Maxwell
41st District House, Position 2: Write-in
Supporting arguments after the jump. Admin is listed as the post author, but in fact this is a collective effort.
Continue reading “Endorsements”
The Seattle Times has a big piece today featuring some comments from our very own Big Media Ben. The accompanying graphic is truly a work of art, that really strips out all the misleading aggregate numbers and breaks down what goes where.
If I have to quibble, I’d like to have seen some sort of reference to sub-area equity, because I think the misperception that each sub-area’s money is going to fund somebody else is both common and cynically exploited by anti-transit opponents. After all, the individual sub-area revenues and budgets are broken out here (Page A-5). As an undecided Pierce County voter, for instance, I’d probably be interested in exactly what the project did for me and my neighbors, and making sure it wasn’t a scam causing me to fund a bunch of hippies on Capitol Hill.
All in all, however, bravo.