At least that’s the message I’m hearing from light rail opponents with Sierra Club.
“I think it’s not the most efficient use of tax dollars,” local club Chairman Mike O’Brien said during a campaign debate over this fall’s multibillion-dollar Proposition 1.
He called the Tacoma line a “political decision” made to satisfy elected officials in Pierce County. “If transportation planners were in charge, they would come up with a more efficient solution,” he said.
Mike is right about one thing. It’s not as efficient to build light rail in the poor part of town. Or the racially diverse part of town.
This arguement reminds me of how white liberals form the north end are still miffed that blacks, Asians, hispanics in the south end are getting light rail before they will. Truth is, light rail could have skipped SE Seattle and headed north sooner to Mike’s neighborhood of Fremont, and the U-District, and to whiter, more affluent neighborhoods further north. But they didn’t. A decision was made to put light rail through a part of town they usually gets the shaft. Instead of ignoring the south end, we invested in it.
After the debate, O’Brien said South End trains would take too long to reach Seattle, because of the system’s slow surface segment currently under construction through South Seattle’s Rainier Valley. He suggests building separate lines outward from downtown Everett and Tacoma, serving local riders into those urban centers.
O’Brien (and Sierra Club) are ill served by their Seattle-centric view. Folks in Fife are just as likely to be taking the train to Tacoma, Federal Way, or Sea-Tac, as they are to Seattle. The city leaders of Fife are getting really excited about light rail, even if urban Seattle liberals aren’t. Besides, where was the Sierra Club on the issue of route alignment? What studies have they done? Where are their ridership statistics?
This “routing” issue is interesting, and you make good (equity-wise)points. But, I worry that an initial segment featuring a Seattle-Northgate or Seattle-Bellevue line would have won more people over (that may be on the fence or against) to rail oriented mass transit. That’s what Portland did, and now they’re working on their fifth extension. I don’t know, it just seems you need to work on the skeptical but willing (and rich voters) first if you want political momentum and gobs of cash.
pete peterson spews:
So far the agency hasn’t shown it CAN build light rail. Show me it working, then maybe I’ll vote for more taxes for more of it. Trust but verify.
And RTID needs to go down in flames. Send a message on that one!
Have you visited MLK Way recently there, buddy? They’re building it.
What a load of BS. The Sierra Club, which supports light rail, just wants to make it better. Their proposal would probaby serve more poor people than a transit line dictated by pork barrel politics.
And let’s talk about equity. Washington has the MOST regressive tax structure in the entire United States mostly because of it’s high sales taxes. RTID leaders want to punish poor people even more with a dramatic hike in the sales tax to build climate changing highways. 509 extension will send tens of thousands of cars through South Seattle neighborhoods, and those neighborhood kids will suffer the health effects. Meanwhile, there is money to put a lid over 520 through Medina — one of the richest communities in the state.
Yeah, this pork barrel package is all about poor people. They’re attacking the Sierra Club because they don’t want to talk about global warming, regressive taxes, or or the best ways to spend our taxes to serve all our communities.
pete peterson@2: So, is that just a fancy sculpture park being built along SR509 and I-5? And, the Tacoma lightrail trains…that’s some sort of optical illusion? Geez, sounds like someone has never been south of downtown.
rtidhurtspoorpeople: “The Sierra Club/700 Club, which supports light rail, just wants to make it better.”
No they don’t.
The Sierra/700 Club wants to build street cars in Seattle and let everyone else have cake.
That is not a recipe for fighting global warming.
We need to give people in Kent, Renton, Tukwila, SeaTac and other places choices and options to get out of their cars.
Over the last 10 years, when we have provided new bus service to the suburbs, guess what, those folks get on the bus. They are dying for alternatives.
Ridership in South and East King County has increased substancially in the last 10 years.
And the 700 Club shows their total lack of understanding regarding trips not taken into the The Nation of Seattle but all those trips from Auburn to Tukwila, Federal Way to the Airport (a huge employer in the region), etc.
Mike (I won’t tell you what I drive and I am loved by Kemper) O’Brien should leave Phinney Ridge one morning, go down to the Tukwila Sounder Station where hundreds of people get off the train and are met by van pools to get them to their jobs in Renton. There are major new companies locating in the Renton area. And their employees are buying houses in Kent and Auburn. They can’t afford to live in Mike’s neighborhood.
There is more to transportation than hip wine bars with street cars that connect and expensive lofts above that nobody can afford to live in.
If we want to reduce Global Warming you have to actually give COMMUTERS an options to get out of their cars and influence good land use decising in the future.
Mike (I love Kemper and he love’s me) O’Brien should leave The Nation of Seattle before he trys to plan transit for the rest of us.
Daddy Love spews:
No, it’s just that “pete peterson” has never gone down to where the darkies build their shacks…right, pete?
Daddy Love spews:
Personally, backing a Fife-Renton spur that never goes near Seattle. Phase 2 extends it to Bellevue and Tacoma. Fuck Seattle.
Daddy Love spews:
Why do we have all these anti-RTID trolls? Jesus, how much money are the opponents putting into it, anyway?
NOT Scott White spews:
The 700 Club/Sierra Club saying we don’t need a south light rail extention really surprises me. I thought organizations like theirs liked light rail because of how it can influence smart land use development.
The 700 Club should just stick with making calendars because they don’t know much about transportation planning.
The real question and issue before us is this: 1.2 million more people are going to move to this region in the next 25 years. Where do we want them to live and how are they going to get around?
That is why we need Roads and Transit. To influence how communities like Federal Way and Burien (which both by the way are building walkable, urban centers) etc. are going to grow.
Marmot's Whistle spews:
The Sierra Club wants better transit of all types for South King County and the entire Puget Sound region. But what are we doing expanding capacity on limited-access highways where experience shows us the new lanes will fill up with more traffic when we need to get serious about climate change?
The problem with the joint ballot is that it’s a joint ballot. Let us vote up or down on a good transit plan by itself. The Sierra Club and many other groups would gladly support a transit plan that gives people real choices and doesn’t increase global warming at the same time like too many of the RTID projects would.
Light rail needs to go first where it will give us a high rider per cost return. Land use changes near stations that add to walk-up and bike-up users will make further expansion of the light rail system more attractive. We need to ensure initial success to build momentum for more rail lines.
Adding 4 new general-purpose lanes to I-405 is not the way to address global warming. Next to it is an underutilized rail corridor that BNSFRR wants to sell. ST should be putting rail transit in that right-of-way connecting Bellevue to Renton to Southcenter to TIB station on the first LRT segment to open in ’09. The RTID plan for more lanes of carbon-spewing vehicles should be rejected.
For the Sierra Club, Kemper is about as close to the transportation devil as anyone can get. The only thing Sierra Club and Kemper agree on is that Prop. 1 is bad — but for entirely different reasons. When you wake up and realize the climate change impacts of the RTID road capacity expansion binge, you will want to defeat the RTID joint package. We can do better. Let’s catch the next train!
@11 – I’m calling bullshit on this argument – where the hell was the Sierra Club last session when ST and other folks were working hard to separate RTID from ST? NOWHERE! Now they come late to the game, complaining about stuff that they didn’t bother to think about until it’s too late, and they’re doing everything in their power to stop our best shot for lightrail from Tacoma to Alderwood and Bellevue.
Then why are we building roads that increase sprawling development? How about the transformative effects of highways — it is actually transforming our planet’s atmosphere.
The Washington State’s Climate Action stakeholder process says we cannot meet the state climate goals if vehicle miles traveled continue to increase. http://www.ecy.wa.gov/climatec.....ptions.pdf
Puget Sound Regional Council says that vehicle miles traveled will increase by 45% based on current plans, including ST2 and RTID.
The Urban Land Institute just put an expert report that says we cannot beat global warming if we keep subsidizing sprawling growth with highways. http://www.smartgrowthamerica.org/gcindex.html
The evidence is in. The RTID highways overwhelm the benefits of light rail, and make a mockery of our state’s goals to reduce global warming pollution. Don’t build highways. If this passes, we are locked into a losing strategy on global warming. Defeat this, and build more and better light rail.
Great post. I fully agree.
The local tradition of putting every thing into the stew pot means everything costs more than it needs to.
I WANT to vote for RTID BUT the lack of support from Sims and CG is telling. The ankyses I have seen may be worng, but of they are correct, Seattle will be screwed by this and THEN there will not be enough money left for thinsg the region really needs.
I am also curious to see what this will add to Vulcan’s property values.
As much as I respect Will, he is the one missing the point of mass transit. It is NOT the folks who .. like him .. live downtown who are being screwed her, it is the other 90% of Seattlites living where Will does not go who get very little out of this. I suspect those sentiments are a lot of what the Sierra Club folks are reflecting.
Daddy Love spews:
The problem with the joint ballot is that it’s a joint ballot. Let us vote up or down on a good transit plan by itself.
But that’s not what’s in front of us. And if this is voted down, it may be a long time before another proposal gets on the ballot. And if this is voted down (and I admit I don’t understand the connection well), it scales back the ST plan in November AFAIK.
So the first time we voted on rail transit in this area was 1970. We could have had BART, essentially, for pennies on the dollar compared to today’s prices. We’ll look back at this year’s proposals and say the same thing.
Please, people. Do not lump the good environmental groups in with the “green-xtremists” in the Sierra Club.
First the Sierra Club lists roads as the problem. Now it is light rail.
That’s your argument? Mike wants to make the world a better place? He seems pretty smug to me.
Not being engaged until the 11th hour on making this plan isn’t leadership. Joel Connelly was right – he’s in over his ideological head.
Who is CG?
I know that Sims is neutral, but not sure on the other.
NOT Scott White spews:
Looks like Jack Wisner (aka Marmot’s Whistle, who was formerly Ediewie who is a Metro Transit employee) has begun to start using a different screen name now that he has been outed.
Jack we know it’s you. We know you have transit envy and wish all this money was going to your agency Metro and not Sound Transit(they get quite a bit from this plan but not as much as Sound Transit light rail).
Jack I am tired of riding your crowded stuck in traffic buses. I want my light rail!
Stop making excuses for the Sierra/700 Club and the greenstreamists.
“I WANT to vote for RTID BUT the lack of support from Sims and CG is telling.”
The Governor supports this plan. Patty Murray supports this plan. Dow Cosntantine, Larry Phillips, Ed Murray.
They all support this plan.
Subject: Sierra Club follow-up comments on ST2
25 January 2007
I write to expand upon my comments on behalf of the Sierra Club Cascade Chapter presented to you at the January 11, 2007 Sound Transit Board meeting. I’m afraid my three minutes of spoken comments did not adequately convey all the points that I intended to present to you.
The contribution of transportation sector emissions to climate change and potential impacts from climate change have prompted the Sierra Club to prioritize the reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from regional transportation sources. To achieve this objective, Sierra Club supports more integrated regional transportation and land use planning, and transportation investments that are based on the twin principles of cost-effective mobility (i.e., moving people and goods rather than vehicles at the least economic cost) and the tangible reduction in GHG emissions. We call for systematic GHG emission estimates for all evaluations of specific transportation projects and regional transportation plans to help us reduce the environmental impacts from selected actions.
Sierra Club finds much to be pleased with the Sound Transit Phase 2 (ST2) package of investments. However, in applying the principles of cost-effective mobility and GHG emission reductions, we identify some areas of concern for which we hope improvements can occur prior to the Board adoption of the final ST2 proposal in spring 2007. The areas of concern can be summarized into these three points:
– Better coordination of RTID and ST2 project lists is needed, especially to prioritize RTID highway investments that improve transit and carpool mobility.
– Selected transit projects need to emphasize high ridership and cost-effective mobility in support of smart growth land use patterns consistent with regional goals.
– Revenue sources for RTID projects should not infringe on ST funding, but instead relate to use of the highway network, while users should see more explicitly the costs associated with driving.
Better coordination of RTID and ST2 projects
The ST Board should exert more influence over the RTID project selection process. It will tend to favor more environmentally favorable projects, and improve the chances of the combined ST2/RTID proposal winning support from voters in November. Consistent with Sierra Club principles, the selected RTID projects should make transit and carpools function better. We support maintenance projects over new construction, but especially favor projects that emphasize capacity for moving people and goods, rather than focusing solely on vehicles.
We need to improve mobility but do so in a manner that will reduce GHG emissions from the transportation sector. The RTID funding needs to better support transit, vanpool, and carpool operations by financing construction of the high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lane network including direct connection ramps between HOV lanes at major intersections of our limited-access highways. Some of the important projects around the region that RTID could fund and improve mobility while encouraging a reduction in GHG emissions are:
– I-90, third phase of R8A on the bridge: This is necessary to convert the center roadway to Link LRT or rapid bus service prior to light rail;
– I-90, center access at SR-900 at downtown Issaquah: It would help East King County bus routes and build upon the Eastgate center access ramps;
– I-5, center access ramps to and from the south at S. Industrial Way: This improves South King County and Pierce County bus service especially relieving the severe a.m. peak congestion in northbound traffic. It builds upon the Federal Way ramps at S. 317th Street;
– I-5, reversible lane center access to and from the north in the University District (e.g., NE 50th Street or NE 42nd Street): This could be implemented long before Link LRT reaches Lynnwood, and help Community Transit services to better utilize the Lynnwood center access ramps;
– I-5 remaining HOV network between Everett and Tacoma: Any portion unfunded by the state nickel or 9.5 cent packages should be completed sooner using RTID as the funding mechanism;
– I-405, center freeway stops at NE 85th Street: Provides access to downtown Kirkland bus routes.
– SR-99, transit lanes and sidewalks in north Seattle and Shoreline: Heavily used corridor would benefit from RTID money to provide missing funding.
Transit Projects Emphasize High Ridership and Cost-effective Mobility
In an unconstrained world, we would love to see even more light rail than is contained in ST2. But given the fiscal reality we face, light rail must be strategically added to the region prioritizing high ridership where it can create synergies with adjacent land use patterns and promote compact, walkable neighborhoods. We identify the extension of North Link LRT to Northgate as the most important component of the light rail system proposed expansions. The high capacity which LRT provides in this corridor coupled with connections to many local bus routes has the potential to reduce significant quantities of GHG emissions through mode shift to transit and promotion of smart growth land use patterns.
But light rail cannot be everything to all users. Due to the routing of the initial segment Link LRT line on MLK Jr. Way S. for needed ridership (which we support), it is unlikely to be a favored mode for long-distance trips due to total travel time. Long-distance trips, such as between Seattle and Tacoma, do not require the all-day capacity of light rail and are better carried on Sounder and express buses operating more reliably in HOT or HOV lanes (funded by RTID as noted above). The Sounder service in the south corridor offers advantages of speed and reliability to Pierce and south King County cities along its route, and should be considered for two-way all-day operations in ST2.
The proposed extension of North Link LRT into Snohomish County attempts to serve relatively low density suburban areas without great ridership potential. Similarly to the south corridor, the intercity and inter-subarea trips are better carried on express buses using HOV lanes and direct access ramps, and commuter rail. The high capacity of light rail should be located where it will support the land use patterns and designated urban centers of the PSRC Destination 2030 plan. Instead of pushing extensions to the north and south, the ST2 light rail investments for Pierce and Snohomish Counties are better made directly in Tacoma and Everett, respectively, both of which are designated urban centers in the Puget Sound region. The proposed East Link LRT connects urban centers Seattle, Bellevue, and Redmond via a defined corridor with quickly increasing density that shows ridership promise within the ST2 time frame. Therefore, this segment should be prioritized over the lengthy extensions north and south in the Board’s draft plan.
Light rail lines in both Tacoma and Everett can build upon their compact street grids and promote better land use-transportation linkages while increasing the cities’ stature as regional urban centers. Only later as local land use supports it and funding is available would the central Link LRT line be tied together with the Tacoma and Everett segments. We see the Pierce ST2 funds better spent by extending the existing light rail line to Tacoma Community College, and from the Tacoma Dome south towards PLU via the SR-7 corridor. RTID could help fund rebuilding the SR-7 right-of-way, making it much more transit friendly. The Snohomish ST2 resources should fund a starter light rail line connecting north downtown Everett with the Everett Mall area and/or the Boeing industrial complex. Ridership will be greater and the lines far more cost-effective in moving people when linking Tacoma together and connecting Everett neighborhoods, instead of building through low-density areas of south King County or south Snohomish County.
The Sierra Club position in favor of cost effective mobility that promotes sustainable, people-oriented land use patterns directs benefits to each ST sub-area improving the chance of success with voters. Building light rail at both ends of the region yields tangible benefits sooner to the urban centers – Tacoma and Everett – that have compatible infrastructure in place. We reduce the impetus for further sprawl that will be realized to be unsustainable as petroleum prices rise and effects of climate change become more apparent.
Revenue Sources for Highway Network Should Relate to Use
Our sales tax rate is already high and slated to increase further in the central Puget Sound region. The highway projects of the RTID should not be funded at all by the general sales tax, but rely on user fees related to the rate of use of the roadway network. Likely sources include tolling, taxes on long-term parking (both free and priced), a regional add-on to the cents per gallon levy or sales tax on gasoline, sales tax on other auto-related goods, and an odometer tax, which could be related to a vehicle’s weight as well.
User fees would be better in at least four ways. They would:
– be fairer, taxing households and firms in proportion to their use of the roadways;
– be more efficient, as they would send a price signal to roadway users;
– correlate with the environmental burden caused by motorists’ use of the roadway providing an incentive to reduce those environmental effects, including climate change;
– make passage more likely by not generating as much political opposition.
The highway system enjoys exclusive use of motor fuel tax revenue; we should retain local add-on general sales tax funds for transit purposes. The ST Board ought to be raising this concern even if RTID does not, given the shared outcome of the proposed ballot measure.
Traffic congestion is inefficient, uncertain, and unfair. It wastes time — for rich and poor alike – and fuel, contributing unnecessarily to GHG emissions. The Sierra Club supports effective traffic congestion management through the use of dynamic tolling of all limited access highways. With pricing that varies based on demand like utility rates or familiar pricing in the market, more vehicles and people could use our limited access highways. Dynamic pricing would induce some trips to shift to less crowded times of the day or to carpools, vanpools, or transit. We urge you to request of the Legislature and our Congressional delegation the necessary state and federal authorities to implement dynamic tolling. The highest priority should be those corridors and their direct alternatives for which mega-projects are currently planned. It is time to price our limited-access highways more similar to the way we price electricity or water.
We appreciate all the quality work that has gone into producing the ST2 plan. However, we feel that a revised prioritization of projects and more Sound Transit influence over the RTID project selection process are needed. The Sierra Club looks forward to working with Sound Transit to improve the ST2 proposal during the public comment period.
Volunteer Chair, Transportation Committee
Sierra Club Cascade Chapter
I guess I find Will’s writing simply sloppy and inducing further sloppiness like @6.
Will’s quotes of Mike O’Brien are not of an argument. Maybe Mike said something more on the topic in person during the debate. What I read above are a few assertions only loosely tied together – nothing like a persuasive effort. Consequently, Will’s intimations of racism seem disjointed, conjectured and a bit reckless. I’ve now read the post 5 times and don’t see the logical connections. Or, maybe I need to read harder.
pete peterson spews:
Look you nattering Nellies – of course I’ve seen the pylons and track going down MLK, along I-5 and up to the airport. But that’s been going on for three years. It is like building a house – the framing goes up quickly, and everything else is a bear to get done. They haven’t even dug the second tunnel through Beacon Hill. None of the signalling and control systems are delivered or tested. Operational light rail could be years delayed beyond 2009 – what if the soils are saturated during the second tunnel dig, for example?
Just because the pylons and guideways are up doesn’t indicate a whole lot. And given how all this was supposed to be operational LAST YEAR, we all should take any supposed completetion dates with a big grain of salt.
It seems like O’Brien’s argument is not about Fife or Tacoma. He and the Sierra Club want a transit system that is high-ridership and does not duplicate service already provided by ST buses. His argument is that it would be higher ridership to start at the urban centers (Seattle, Tacoma, Everett, Bellevue) and build out from there, hopefully to eventually connect with each other. Meanwhile, these would be likely to have more ridership than single lines to Tacoma, Northgate, and Overlake. High ridership on the initial ST lines would build support for more expansion later.
Mike wasn’t given a lot of questions by Robert Mak. Part of it seemed to be that Mike had the same answer for each question.
please pay attention spews:
The Sierra Club’s Seattle-centric view matches their membership which is mighty sparse outside of Seattle. If they were truly ideologically consistent they would work to change land use patterns in Seattle which is 70% single-family zoned.
Oh yeah, that would piss off their members in Fremont, Wallingford and Capitol Hill…
Michael Caine spews:
And another decade passes without any significant improvements made to mass transportation because its gotta be my way or else!
You would think people would learn that there is such a word as compromise but sadly no.
Instead its going to be more of the same as everybody stabs each other in the back and we all burn on the pyre of purity.
I’m with Will on this. Where was the Sierra Club last year, or the year before that, or the year before that when this package was being put together?
My guess is you were out running vanity campaigns against W and Mike! McGavick to enrich your coffers without actually having to do any serious policy work because sullying yourselves with local transportation issues that don’t easily fit on a glossy calendar is too hard. So thanks for showing up at the last minute to insert yourself into the program but I’m not having it.
Prissy little douche bags like the Sierra Club with their oh so educated, oh so white, oh so much smarter than you members are a huge part of the reason we’ve lost in the interior West for the last thirty years. As always you fuck up everything you touch and then run back to Fremont and high-five yourselves for your righteous moral victory while leaving the blue collar middle class to suffer for your sloganeering.
So Sierra Club just to make sure you know where I stand…
I want my goddamned light rail so I can get to work without a car.
So Will – is the reason Ron Sims is refusing to endorse this is that he’s a racist and hates poor people too?
You’re pathetic, Will. Playing the race card against the Sierra Club. How lame.
If the Sierra Club opposed building light rail to Othello, you’d say the only reason they oppose it is because they hate Hispanic farmworkers.
Hey, Prop 1 supporters, how’s it feel to have the insightful genius @27 in your company? You probably thought all the clueless cranks would side with the Sierra Club.
“Light rail lines in both Tacoma and Everett can build upon their compact street grids and promote better land use-transportation linkages while increasing the cities’ stature as regional urban centers. Only later as local land use supports it and funding is available would the central Link LRT line be tied together with the Tacoma and Everett segments. We see the Pierce ST2 funds better spent by extending the existing light rail line to Tacoma Community College, and from the Tacoma Dome south towards PLU via the SR-7 corridor.”
Tim Gould’s RTID letter
What Tim is stating here is what the city of Tacoma would like to see happen in regards to the growth of light-rail inside Tacoma and has done some planing to build.
This local Sierra Club guy opposing everything just keeps digging himself deeper. What a dope.
Um… Brian… The Sierra Club has been active on this and other transportation issues for at least the last seven years.
Let’s be very clear about why we do not have Sound Transit Phase 2 yet — the legislature and governor refused to let Sound Transit go to the ballot alone in 2006. ST was ready, and so was the public. It was a huge year for democrats and it would have passed handily. But road advocates in the legislature, aided and abetted by the Governor, refused to let ST go to the ballot. Instead, they held it hostage to RTID, a bloated roads package that polling showed could never pass on its own. The Sierra Club opposed that, and further, made it clear to the powers that be that they should not count on Sierra Club support for a ballot measure just because it had light rail. The ballot measure would have to reduce global warming emissions for Sierra Club support. RTID was not listening. Desperate for one last shot at pork barrel road projects, they are trying to bluff and bully the public into just ignoring global warming and all the other flaws of highway expansion.
If we tell them we want to spend billions of dollars to actually fight global warming, instead of making it worse, they will come back with the right ballot measure. A measure like we should have gotten in 2006. Global warming is real, and the politicians need to stop playing games. We shouldn’t spend billions of dollars to make global warming worse.
The 700 Club sent two letters, 5 years after this process began.
Please. Get a life.
The 700 club didn’t do the hard work to influence this plan.
TCC, Futurewise, WCV and other did and that is why they support this.
The green-xtremists just didn’t do any work here.
“If the Sierra Club opposed building light rail to Othello, you’d say the only reason they oppose it is because they hate Hispanic farmworkers.”
Funny you should mention farm works, the Sierra Club does a lot of environmental justice work including work with Hispanic farmworkers.
Hehehe… Couldn’t help my self.
Buckin' Broncos spews:
I edited the end of your letter to reflect the reality of the situation.
“We appreciate all the quality work that has gone into producing the ST2 plan. However…we know a lot more about transportation than you do! Why do we know more than you do? We do not know why. We just know we are right. This is one of the key fundamentals of faith-based ideology”
Here’s a harsh take on the Sierra Club’s position
Buckin' Broncos spews:
Oops. Try this one:
you know what is funny, it is this: The 700 Club green-xtremists spent weeks crying in their chereos because the CON voter statement in King County was all about how bad transit was, but nothing about roads.
They lost that lawsuit, and now have resorted to repeating the Road lobby talking points that are in the voter pamphlet statement that THEY SAID WAS ONE SIDED!!!
What the &#^$*&#^??
These guys make no sense.
The 700 Club was for light rail before they were against it.
Hmm… All 26,000 of them in Washington or just the handful of folks that make up the transportation, political and executive comities?
From The 700 Club’s No RTID site:
“In a televised CityClub debate, Michael O’Brien was chastised (and out debated) by RTID-booster Councilwoman Julia Patterson for not caring about South King County (or knowing where it is exactly) (”Planned light-rail route panned,” Seattle Times.) We’ll have more on why The 700 Club’s stance on global warming, smarter transit, and sales tax increases have more to do with social (elitist Seattle) justice than the good councilmember (a real progressive that fights for working families) seems to understand.”
The 700 Club will have “more on why our…blah…blah” when they get around to figuring out what they believe in and why that is.
I don’t know what 26,000 people think. And neither does The 700 Club’s green-xstreamist Seattle based leadership. They never engaged their members in this process. The Seattle leadership was barely engaged themselves.
I just know what Mike (Kemper’s man crush) O’Brien, and Mike (Seattle elite) McGinn, and Tim (Seattle elite) Gould are saying.
And it changes day after day and makes no fucking sense.
We want to argue against the roads in the Voter guide!
Now we are going to argue against the transit using the same lines our buddy Kemper uses!
We support light rail!
Now we’re against light rail?
The north line sucks cause it runs along I-5!
Now we think the south line sucks because it runs through communities that are investing in their urban centers.
And these guys are going to lead the way to solving Global Warming?
No RTID @20 posted a cogent set of arguments.
Scott White @18: Marmot is a second poster who agrees with me most of the time. His whistle is sharp. You, I, and Marmot all post as citizens.
Bob @6 seems a bit confused. The Sierra Club is not building streetcars in Seattle. The SLU streetcar was pushed by Vulcan and Nickels; it is more a land development marketing ploy than a transit investment. ST2 suggests a slow indirect streetcar between Broadway and the International District via 12th Avenue South and South Jackson Street. Blame Nickels and ST2 for those boutique investments, not the Sierra Club.
Freeman’s group wants the debate to be roads v. transit.
The Sierra Club wants the debate to be over what roads and what taxes. The Sierra Club asks: if this new revenue stream is spent to widen limited access highways, what revenue stream will provide the needed maintenance? I-5 needs about $2 billion. Many bridges need repair. Why is widening I-405 a higher priority? It is not.
That the RTID relies on the sales tax for a substantial portion of its revenue is a fatal flaw by itself. This is a 30-year choice, as they will bond against the revenue stream.
Several good projects are on the RTID list, but the bulk of its program is expansion of unpriced limited access highways. These would tend to promote sprawl and global warming, two key issues.
ST has subarea equity. South King and Pierce County funds have to be spent on transit projects that benefit those taxpayers. A question is the effectiveness of the projects on the ballot. If we want to improve transit service in South King and Pierce County, we should invest the limited stream of transit funds to maximize the ridership attracted and to promote development in walkable communities. The ST2 study shows that south Link LRT to the Tacoma Dome station is a poor investment that would take a long time to construct. Is taxing the two subareas at five tenths for 20 years and delivering high capacity transit where it would attract little ridership a good deal for the working poor? No. How does running empty seats between the Tacoma Dome and SeaTac help? It would not be as helpful as alternative transit investment. They would be much better off getting better transit quickly by providing better bus service on more lines requiring less capital and by adding all-day two-way South Sounder service. It need not be “buses stuck in traffic”, but much more robust local service is needed today. Sound Move has build center access ramps at South 317th Street that are not used intensively yet. I-5 HOT lanes could be provided; that is a question of political courage that some leaders have. How is it preferrable to use the sales tax to widen freeways instead of tolling?
Bob @6 is correct that transit ridership is growing rapidly in the suburbs. That is why the ST2 funds should be spent on projects that can be implemented quickly and attract maximum ridership.
But the ST2 discussion is secondary to the RTID. Vote no. We should demand better choices from the Legislature and the two three county governments.
“They never engaged their members in this process” are you sure about that? How do you know this?
I’m a member, formerly an active one, and I’d agree that members weren’t included in this. But, they weren’t excluded either. Any member can come to any meeting they want. All meetings are posted on The Sierra Clubs website. The process for deciding how to vote was carried out the same as every other vote is carried out for every vote in every Sierra Club chapter around the world (we’re a global group now I’m told).
“The Seattle leadership was barely engaged themselves”
Again, how do you know this? Are you part of the leadership ? Were you there? Are you just going to bitch about it on the comment thread of a blog that most people have never heard of (sorry Goldy, but you’re a niche product). Or, are you going to calm down, act like an adult and work to get better member involvement and a more engaged leadership in your local chapter of the Sierra Club?
Sorry folks, I guess this is a bit off topic.
PS. Having actually met Mike and Tim (Hi Tim! I’m the very quiet and quite tired guy that was sitting next to you in the Seattle City Light van last weekend) I can assure you that they are anything but elitists.
Michael, did you ever meet with a single elected official involved in putting this plan together? There were like 40 of them. Did you ever testify at one of the over 150 meetings?
Did the 700 Club leadership ever testify or meet with elected officials? Why don’t you ask them.
My sources say they sent two letters over the course of 5 years. Two letters that were sent late last Spring.
They met with a couple of electeds in April, after the plan was largely put together.
You should sign up with an environmental organization that actually affects policy for the good of the environment.
Look everyone Jack Wisner is back. Or eddiew or marmot or whatever he is calling himself. He has more identities than The 700 Club green-xtremists.
Jack is a Metro employee that wants everyone to believe we can get by with just buses that are stuck in traffic. He doesn’t like east link, he doesn’t like the south extention, or the north extenion. Just throw some bues on the freeway. It’s cheaper, better, faster, etc. Where have we heard that before (John Niles, Magie Fimia, CETA, Sane Transit, Rob McKenna, etc)?
Sounds like Jack is competing with Mike to be Kemper’s new best friend/man crush.
And Jack, you ought to know, HOT lanes don’t do a damn thing for buses. HOT lanes are for people who want to keep driving by themselves and get there faster by paying a couple bucks. If an HOV lane has space, how does letting a bunch of SOV’s in there make it faster for buses? It doesn’t. Be honest.
Let me know when it gets to Camano, then I’ll move to Vashon!
There are 22 Planning committee members, not 40. It’s on RTID’s website.
Of the 22 6 are from Pierce County. Of those 6 from Pierce County I’ve met 4, but never to talk about RTID as I was never part of the transportation committee and I live outside of the district.
“Did the 700 Club leadership ever testify or meet with elected officials? Why don’t you ask them.”
Why don’t you ask them, you’re the one throwing bombs.
arty funk spews:
“The Sierra Club wants the debate to be over what roads and what taxes.”
You and I must get different editions of the Seattle Times.
The one I read this morning has the green-xtremists pissing all over the south end light rail line.
michael: and there are 18 members of the sound transit board, and there are a couple pretty important legislators that had something to do with this.
Looks like you and the 700 Club could use a lesson in WA State politics.
And earlier you told us all how the 700 Club was so active on this issue.
Um… Brian… The Sierra Club has been active on this and other transportation issues for at least the last seven years.
Now you say you don’t know?
What is with you green-xstremists? Are you trying to reduce CO2 by inhaling it?
Oh by the way, and just Axin, why did Sound Transit completely bypass Southcenter, the busiest tourist and shopping canter in the South End (NOT IN SEATTLE).
But tunneling (at a Massive Massive expense) into Ranier valley was a priority, go figure!
Because Morons are routing this stupid ass train!
@17″Who is CG” = Gregoire.
@19 “The Governor supports this plan. Patty Murray supports this plan.”
I did not say endorse, I said support. CG is a bust as a leader.
For RTID to pass, someone needs to tell folks like me what it is going to cost and what I get.
yes, a single HOT lane would be limited; the HOV network does not have capacity to sell. but the future includes systemwide dynamic tolling with multiple tolled lanes, not single tolled lanes. if the Legislature acts wisely, general purpose lanes will be converted to tolled lanes.
Executive Sims and Doug MacDonald have been dynamic leaders on this issue.
I am and have been a big advocate for north Link LRT to Northgate and have no agreement with Fimia and Niles on that. The tradgedy of ST is their lack of progress going north. All the corridor studies for decades have indicated that is where high capacity transit was needed first and most.
Does support for the RTID four general purpose lanes on I-405 make all joint ballot measure proponents boy toys for Freeman? of course not. he is going continue to make money with any ballot result.
Do we have to warm the planet, induce sprawl, and widen freeways with sales tax revenue to get Link LRT to Northgate? I hope not. we should expect more from our governments.
again, marmot is a different poster. he is good though.
Maybe you and I are looking at different things. I’m looking at this:
The group that will place an investment plan before voters is the 22-member Planning Committee. It is composed of all 21 County Council members from King, Pierce, and Snohomish Counties and the Secretary of Transportation (a non-voting member), serving as the Chair. For more background see Rules of the Planning Committee.
Visit No on Prop 1 nad Come Away a Supporter?
Now I am REALLY confused.
“This is not a balanced plan. Only 10% funds roads. Just a fraction of that goes toward fixing dangerous bridges and crumbling freeways. Nearly 90% funds Sound Transit – which moves about 1% of all trips –”
Is this true?.. I would vote for funds to finish ST. At least I think I would!
Why in hell is it so hard to find out what the karking RTID really does???
Is Gegoire there?? Helloooo Helloooo
marco45 and scott white18 find it important to out eddiew as Jack Whisner, as if my day job should disqualify me from political blogging. Metro has thousands of employees with many political positions. I post to help the economy, the environment, and transit riders, not an agency. I have only posted or slogged as eddiew. The debate is good.
I became a Democratic activist in 1972 with the McGovern campaign, about 20 years before joining Metro. I have been a Democratic precinct officer for almost all of those years. Coincidentally, I was briefly PC in Belltown where Will is an appointed PC now. I got a MA in Economics from the UW. I am a TCC boardmember (the contrarian: I also disagreed with them over Ref 51, SMP, and SLUT), support same sex marriage, NARAL, and the Northwest Woman’s Law Center. I am multi modal: walk, bike, drive, bus, and row. I grew up in Shoreline; my father was a trade union activist and my mother a cashier.
I have lobbied the Legislature for improved tranport finance for several years. Using the sales tax for RTID expansion of limited access highways is not acceptable.
[deleted – off topic]
Politically Incorrect spews:
Just another example of the people of King County and Seattle thinking they’re the center of the universe. Pierce County doesn’t matter. As a matter of fact, Pierce County is a nice place for the state to dump sex offenders from all over the state. KC and the rest of the state surely don’t want them turned-loose in Seattle or returned to the place from whence they came.
And so it goes…
Woo-hoo! Right on!
marco @45, check this link: http://www.seatrans.blogspot.com/2007 /09/sierra-club-has-no-credibility.html It also shows Jack Whisner uses the bogus Kemper Freeman argument putting vehicles over people. And don’t forget Whisner also opposes street cars, which achieve “needed land use changes” his stupid buses do not achieve. Sierra Club does an excellent job of contradicting their own values on a continual basis.
Here’s a debate from a different thread, but since the same folks seem to be arguing on both, I figured it might be useful –
“it is disappointing to see a “progressive” so eagerly repeating the talking points of roads advocates.”
I share StopGlobalWarming’s overall concerns about roads, but the religious fervor of purist ideologues on the far left is even more disappointing. It also reminds me of the smear campaign Ralph Nader waged against Al Gore for being a sell-out. If nothing else, the hysterics of the far left in that case should serve as the perfect example of how ideological purity can cause an awful lot of damage.
The Sierra Club is lining up its circular firing squad one more time, to help kill light rail along with a small set of bad road roads projects they dislike.
But that may be purposeful, because what I’ve been reading lately, the Sierra club opposes running light rail out into the suburbs, and could care less if ST came back with a much shorter light rail proposal in a couple years. If the Sierra Club was actually serious about getting people out of their cars, rather than just waging these “I’m more pure than you” battles, one would think they might want to get light rail expansion underway AS SOON AS POSSIBLE and AS FAR AS POSSIBLE.
One of the fundamental flaws of Sierra Club’s approach here is their Seattle-centric view of the world. One gets the feeling they are miffed Ballard and other in-city destinations are being set aside for suburban rail extensions. Well, guys – for one, Seattle simply does not have the tax base to build the Sierra Club’s city-only system. Seattle is one-sixth of the region’s population. Similary, rather than communicate to, and recruit from, their own Seattle eco chamber, why doesn’t the Cascade Chapter of the Sierra Club live up to it’s name, and cross Seattle city limits on occasion? Like most special interest groups, they seem to spend a lot more time preaching to the choir than they do communicating with people who need to hear their message and have their hearts and minds changed on these critical issues.
Earth to Sierra Club: the suburbanites are the ones who drive the most, and are the ones who need to be coaxed out of their cars. Isn’t that supposed to be one of the foundations of Global Warming purists’ theory – that CO2 emissions in Lynnwood affect all of us? Step out of your bubble, and follow your own values….please!
“That’s why the 43rd, 46th and 36th Democratic districts, representing the most liberal parts of Seattle, recently refused to endorse the RTID ballot measure”
Uh, nice try, but those LD’s supported Prop 1 with solid majorities, but just not super-majorities. They fell for Sierra Club’s false promises about a negative outcome this Fall (since Sierra Club doesn’t have clue about what goes on in Olympia – the enviro groups that do are all backing Prop 1).
It’s ironic the windmill-tilting Sierra Clubber who posted these comments mentions the Seattle Leg Districts, since it was Seattle Dems who not only voted to tie Sound Transit to RTID, but some of them were architects of the plan.
And how is it Sierra Club supported the roads-only gas tax increase two short years ago, which included ZERO dollars for transit, eh? The threat of global warming was realized over 15 years ago. Again, more proof Sierra Club is pursuing a different agenda this year, as they are more than happy to sacrifice carbon-neutral light rail for a few bad roads projects.
“The word is getting out to progressives that it is not okay to turn our backs on global warming. Watch the polling start to turn when progressive voters realize that we are being taken for a ride.”
Actually, my purist friend, the majority of those progressives all drive solo as their primary method of getting around. And since a majority of the RTID projects benefit carpools and buses more than they benefit solo drivers, you are – once again – shooting yourself in the foot, rather than taking aim at the real enemy. Classic Nader move.
Bottom line: Transportation Choices and the rest of the environmental community didn’t come to supporting Roads & Transit easily. They came to this point by analyzing the actual content of the plan, rather than the hysterical purist hot-air coming out of the light rail-doubting Sierra Club. What they found was 85% good and 15% bad in the Roads & Transit measure. (Getting back to the Nader comparison one last time, it is just so perfect Sierra Club is willing to sacrifice 85% good for 15% bad. Naderite purists were “voting their dreams” to sacrifice Gore’s 85% good qualities for the 15% bad. And look what we got.)
Transportation Choices, Futurewise, WCV, CLC, Bicycle Alliance, etc also realize the transit-unfriendly legislature (yes, especially the rail-skeptic Seattle ‘progressives’ like Chopp, Murray and Dickerson) and the Governor will never give us anything better. The suburban dominated Dem caucus is even worse on public transportation.
And yet Sierra Club is so myopic in their approach, they’re willing to put their faith in the anti-progressive legislature (on transportation issues, at least) to come up with a better plan. If Sierra Club had an ounce of influence in Olympia, or if they had a better grasp of basic political realities, I wouldn’t be so critical and I could at least feel like their position is viable. But they don’t, so I will continue to make sure they get called on this bs they’re spreading in 700 Club fashion.
I’m done with faith-based politicking. We can agree to disagree, but how’s about sticking to reality along the way? “I am more pure than you are” is not a good way to establish credibility. And accusing others of not properly adopting the purist hysteria around a relatively small road expansion is not a good way to be intellectually honest.
Sierra Clubbers always seem to end their comments with something like this: “you don’t believe the threat of global warming is real, do you?” I’m sorry, but that sounds a lot like right wing callers on talk radio accusing war critics of “not believing the Islamist threat is real.” It’s a cheap, lazy way to get your point across when you know you don’t have a decent basis for your argument.
“I have lobbied the Legislature for improved tranport finance for several years. Using the sales tax for RTID expansion of limited access highways is not acceptable.”
Uh, but Sierra Club was nowhere to be seen when the legislature tied RTID to Sound Transit (it appears you hate them, too – probably because light rail is going to make your buses look even slower and less reliable thant they look now)
Ok, eddiew, then what roads are all those trucks drive on? HOV lanes?
It’s called freight mobility, and it affects all of us, whether we use the roads or not. Look in to it.
The Sierra Club isn’t going to be growing and hunting all their food in the city anytime soon. Freight mobility alone justifies the use of sales tax on roads.
And eddiew, being the bus guy, you do realize that sales tax money is going for hundred of millions of dollars of transit via mitigation, right? And you also know that gas tax increase Sierra Club supported two years ago included zilch for transit, right?
Can you guys stay consistent for just a minute or two?
It is pretty clear that the Pro-RTID side’s strategy is to attack the messenger (Sierra Club) but not the message — RTID makes global warming worse. Puget Sound Regional Council tells us that vehicle miles traveled will increase by 45% by 2030, and their analysis includes the construction of RTID and Phase 2 of Sound Transit. At a time when all of the scientists say we must reduce global warming pollution 80% by 2050 to avoid the catastrophic effects of global warming, why would we spend billions of dollars to build more highways to make global warming worse? And don’t kid yourself, the bulk of the money in RTID is for new highways and highway expansion. http://cascade.sierraclub.org/node/1315
The stridency and desperation of the prior two posts is evidence of the bankruptcy of pro-RTID side’s arguments. The Sierra Club is just saying it plain — it is time to stop politics as usual and get serious about global warming. http://slog.thestranger.com/20....._local_cha
All the spouting, handwaving and excuses at 59 and 60 is just pathetic spin by those without any response to the central reason why the Sierra Club opposes RTID. It makes global warming worse.
a correction: in the 43rd LD Democratic vote, the majority voted to support the negative position on the joint ballot measure. In the 36th, the majority voted to support the affirmative position. Neither reached their thresholds for endorsement. 43rd District is ground zero for the SR-520 project. I do not know which side had the majority in the 46th. Neither side had enough for endorsement. that seems significant, as tax measures, especially three-county ones, usually require large majorities in those districts to carry.
In Olympia, the Sierra Club works in a coalition of environmental organizations. On transport issues, TCC leads. On environmental and transportation lobby days each Session, many activists from all the groups come together. Some environmental groups think the joint ballot measure is an acceptable compromise worthy of support. The Sierra Club does not. The groups will work together again after the election.
Did the Cascade Bicycyle Club recommend a no vote last week?
Freight movement on the highways would be improved with systemwide dynamic tolling. The extension of SR-167 between the Port of Tacoma and Auburn and the extension of SR-509 between I-5 and South 188th Street are supposed to be for improved freight movement. If that is the case, they should be implemented as toll roads. The RTID had tolling as an allowable revenue source. They could have placed more toll revenue in their financial plan, but did not. They only assume toll revenue for the SR-520 project, where is necessary to fill the large funding gap. new limited access highway capacity that fills with traffic does not help freight movement.
a large portion of the RTID funding goes toward expansion of unpriced limited access highways. these projects were not designed with tolling in mind as a demand management toll.
a large portion of the RTID funding comes from the sales tax: unfair and inefficient.
the RTID program is largely expansion, not maintenance or preservation. only the South Park bridge, added in the last months, fits that bill. the nickel and 9.5 cent packages relied on the gas tax, a good user fee. the latter also included weight fees that help fund some projects not eligible for the gas tax revenue under the 18th amendment.
It is true that TCC helped improve the RTID significantly. It is perfectly reasonable to differ as to whether the compromise is acceptable.
please pay attention spews:
@61 is typical of the faith-based reasoning of Sierra Club members. If you challenge them with facts or questions you get no answer and you are called “strident” and “desperate”. If you think it is humorous that Kemper Freeman has a man crush on Mike O’Brien you are “hurtful” and “not funny”.
The fact is, the Sierra Club folks are in over their heads. They use misleading facts like the one above. Yes, the PSRC does say vehicle miles will rise 45%, but Clubbers don’t mention that figure includes the estimated three million more people who will double our population in this region.
And they will drive whether RTID is built or not. Even Sierra Club members drive. A poll on their own website shows that 50% of Club members list the car as their main mode of transportation. Talk about walking the walk.
The Sierra Club’s membership is largely concentrated in certain Seattle zip codes. The opinions of any individual or group are highly influenced by their personal experience. You don’t see the Sierra Club out campaigning to get rid of Seattle’s 70% single-family zoned neighborhoods because their same membership cherishes its character. They don’t have to live in Burien or Federal Way because they can’t afford space for their family in Seattle. They don’t have to drive to a job that is too far away because they don’t want to move the kids out of their schools.
In reality, the Sierra Club doesn’t really know how much these roads projects will add to global warming. If those lanes end up being congestion priced their impact could be much less. That is what many environmentalists want to fight for after passage of Roads and Transit.
But it is when the Sierra Club attacked rail that they really revealed how utterly uninvolved they have been in crafting a new light rail plan for the next 20 years. They criticize the priorities of the elected officials and residents of Pierce and Snohomish counties and offer goofy suggestions that don’t even match the funding available. They can’t imagine why anyone would want to go from Tacoma to the airport. Or Federal Way to Tacoma. Or simply want a ride they can count on.
You can care deeply about global warming and still support the Roads and Transit ballot measure. It builds 50 miles of light rail with over 20 station areas that can help develop dense, walkable, livable communities. And then you can work hard to make sure the roads that are built are congestion priced and managed to flow efficiently to encourage fuel consumption. Don’t buy in to the Sierra Club hype that you can’t care about the environment and support this package. The rail is far more important to this region.
You can care deeply about global warming and support RTID — but that just means you have very poor judgment about RTID. The proponents still have not explained how building more highways is good for global warming. Because they can’t. 50 years of experience is that more highways equals more cars equals more emissions. It is undisputed that vehicle miles traveled will go up by 45% by 2030. This calculation includes both RTID and Sound Transit — so the current plan is to increase global warming pollution. This is not leadership. If we are going to spend billions of dollars on transportation, it should be for a plan that reduces global warming pollution, not increases it.
As for congestion pricing, if we are going to use it, which we should, we don’t need more highway lanes. Nor should we punish poor people with a regressive sales tax if our plan is to start tolling the roads. Go straight to the plan that works, congestion pricing. That is much better than wasting billions to dig the global warming hole even deeper before we start trying to climb out of it.
As for the alleged attack on light rail, one can support light rail and still suggest improvements, which is what the Sierra Club did. All the bleating about extremists and elitists in the Sierra Club is just a diversion technique — pay no attention to all those highways behind the light rail curtain. The elected leaders in this region must think we are blind.
Buckin' Broncos spews:
“You can care deeply about global warming and support RTID — but that just means you have very poor judgment about RTID”
Caring and thinking is fine for goofy and fuzzy fake liberals.
Try thinking, too, guy. Anybody can “care.”
“Go straight to the plan that works, congestion pricing.”
How is it that the Naderites always pick the pick the idea with the least amount of public support? Is this a fusion of the 700 Club and the Sierra Club we’re witnessing?
“Nor should we punish poor people with a regressive sales tax if our plan is to start tolling the roads.”
You moron. The sales tax goes to transit. Which I thought you idiots liked. Guess not…must be all neat gizmos in those Subaru Outbacks which always seem to fill up the parking lots at Sierra Club events.
Get your Nader dictator in there some day, and maybe your revolution can finally happen. Giving people what they don’t want is just sooooo democratic.
Buckin' Broncos spews:
“The extension of SR-167 between the Port of Tacoma and Auburn and the extension of SR-509 between I-5 and South 188th Street are supposed to be for improved freight movement. If that is the case, they should be implemented as toll roads.”
Well, the Sierra Club may not have a lot of influence or money, but their members at least have internet connections. Here we have eddiew who was recently outed as a bus planner and Sierra Club activist, asking trucking interests…who just ate a big statewide fee increase, to eat a lot more. Of course, pure Sierra Club members don’t consume things, so who cares about freight mobility, right?
“The RTID had tolling as an allowable revenue source. They could have placed more toll revenue in their financial plan, but did not. ”
Also typical eddiew spewage. The state legislature (those nice people eddiew always ends up defending because they dislike light rail the same way he does) could have easily given the RTID more tolling authority. But they chose not to, because ultimately eddie’s buddies don’t want to relinquish too much control over their dilapidated dominion.
“a large portion of the RTID funding comes from the sales tax: unfair and inefficient.”
Actually, eddiew (aka Jack Whisner, Metro planner) the sales tax is an efficient way to get revenues from people who live outside the urban growth boundary, but do not pay mvet taxes.
“the RTID program is largely expansion, not maintenance or preservation. only the South Park bridge, added in the last months, fits that bill. the nickel and 9.5 cent packages relied on the gas tax, a good user fee. ”
Yeah, eddiew kinda forgot to mention the 520 bridge and the Spokane St. Viaduct, but that’s ok. Intellectual dishonesty is always the mark of the ideologue. And eddiew has a lot of unpopular ideas he wants to force on you.
eddiew also forgot to mention the gas tax is one of the most regressive taxes around, impacting middle class and poor people even more, since they are forced to commute further, and typically drive older cars with worse mileage. Inconsistent? Of course! Jack Whisner is with the Sierra Club, and spends many hours bashing on streetcars and light rail.
It’s ok, directory says eddiew lives in Ballard, where not a single one of these middle class people he pretends to care about can afford to live.
herbert browne spews:
Gas tax “regressive”? It’s a straightup user fee, no? I guess it all depends on how old a car you drive, if the mileage is better or not… my ’64 VW Beetle got 36mpg, with my wife & 3 kids & groceries on board.
Re @59 ..”since Sierra Club doesn’t have clue about what goes on in Olympia – the enviro groups that do are all backing Prop 1..”-
Well, how about Conservation Northwest? They’re gonna sue to keep the RTID “x-base” project- an all-new highway through some pretty sweet oak prairie & wetlands- from being built. I guess “the enviro groups that do” would include that “cascade coalition” that’s figuring out where to grow bigger without having the Quadrant Corporation build new cities on Weyerhaeuser forestlands… and has decided that those oak prairies are expendable- even the ones vested in the military enclaves (which will be the tree museums of the future, i suppose). Pretty sure that’s what Pierce Co exec Ladenburg is thinking… ^..^