The phrase,'Unsound Transit', was coined by the Wall Street Journal to describe Seattle where,"Light Rail Madness eats billions that could otherwise be devoted to truly efficient transportation technologies." The Puget Sound's traffic congestion is a growing cancer on the region's prosperity. This website, captures news and expert opinion about ways to address the crisis. This is not a blog, but a knowledge base, which collects the best articles and presents them in a searchable format. My goal is to arm residents with knowledge so they can champion fact-based, rather than emotional, solutions.


Monday, March 10, 2008

After Prop 1, Whats Next for RTID?

12/21/07What's Next?

On November 6, 2007 the voters of Snohomish, King and Pierce Counties voted on Proposition 1, which included RTID Blueprint for Progress and Sound Transit Phase 2 plans. The measure was defeated.

Although Proposition 1 failed, road safety and congestion continue to be top concerns in this region. Population growth, an aging infrastructure, and development patterns will continue to stress our transportation infrastructure.

The RTID Planning Committee and our other transportation partners will take some time to understand the message underlying the defeat of the Roads and Transit plan before making any decisions about moving forward. The RTID Planning Committee and King, Pierce, and Snohomish Counties will also explore potential options.

There are three potential options for pursuing funding for roads, none of which are exclusive of the others.

1. The RTID Planning Committee May Resubmit the Plan. RCW 36.120.040(8) authorizes the RTID Planning Committee to redefine the selected transportation projects, financing plan and ballot measure and submit the refined plan to the voters after approval by county legislative authorities. The Planning Committee has the authority to do this three times under the authorizing statute, but if a plan is not adopted by the third time, the Planning Committee is dissolved. There is no limit on how much time may pass between submissions.

2. The Counties Could Establish a Single County RTID . RCW 36.120.030(8) provides that if the voters do not authorize a multi-county Regional Transportation Investment District by December 1, 2007, each of the Counties has the option to form a single-county regional transportation investment district on an individual and independent basis.

3. The Counties Could Establish or Participate in a Transportation Benefit District (TBD). RCW 36.73.020 allows each County to form or participate in a transportation benefit district after December 1, 2007 for the purpose of acquiring, constructing, improving, providing and funding transportation improvements.

Although the RTID has the legislative authority to continue to exist, the current state funding for RTID expires at the end of this year given the unsuccessful election. Neither the RTID Planning Committee or the Executive Committee are planning any meetings in the near future.

What is the Regional Transportation Investment District Planning Committee?

The RTID Planning Committee was formed with this goal: to keep people and goods moving throughout the three-county Puget Sound region well into the 21st Century.

Created by the Washington Legislature, the RTID Planning Committee was charged with developing a plan for improving transportation by focusing on the most highly congested highways and bridges in Snohomish, King and Pierce counties. The plan was submitted to voters in the fall of 2007, along with a transit investment package from Sound Transit.

The RTID Planning Committee focused on the most heavily traveled corridors in this region in developing a plan that finishes or adds to transportation investments made by the state. Its goals are to improve traffic flow, integrate roads and transit projects that benefit the most people, improve safety and performance, and keep the investments affordable.

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