ADVERTISEMENT
Advertise Here

Spin Control

Both Transpo Budgets hold line on taxes, projects

OLYMPIA – Legislators began hearings Thursday on competing but similar multi-billion-dollar spending plans for the state’s highways, bridges, ferries and mass transit.

Prepared separately by the House and Senate, the two $8.4 billion transportation budget proposals have many things in common. Described variously as “bare bones” and “Band-Aid” by some Democrats involved in writing the plans, neither calls for big new projects or new taxes.

While they differ on some key elements involving ferries and some West Side projects, both would spend about $75 million between mid 2013 and mid 2015 on state projects in Spokane County.

To continue reading this item, or to comment, go inside the blog.


… The bulk of that, $68.2 million, would be for continuing work on the North Spokane Corridor, the local “mega project” that receives money from gasoline taxes approved by voters.

Both budget proposals also have $5.3 million for improvements to Interstate 90 west of the Idaho border, $1.3 million for the intersection of U.S. 195 and Cheney Road, and $1.3 million for the Riverside Avenue extension.

The House Transportation Committee released its budget Thursday morning, a day after the Senate panel released its plan. Rep. Ed Orcutt of Kalama, the house committee’s ranking Republican, said a no new taxes plan was “the right approach.”

Rep. Mark Liias, D-Edmonds, warned it would lead to problems in the coming years: “This is a Band-Aid for our transportation system, not a long-term solution for moving people and goods around our state.”

 House Democrats unveiled a $10 billion plan in February to build new projects with money raised from new fees and taxes, including a 2-cent per gallon increase on gasoline each year for five years.

Senate committee members said Wednesday they were waiting to see what kind of tax increase the House can pass before considering a hike on their own. But on Thursday, a spokesman for House Transportation Chairwoman Judy Clibborn, D-Mercer Island, said she’s working on a revised, scaled-down version of that plan.

For a county-by-county list of projects in the 2013-15 House Transportation Budget proposal, click here.

For a county-by-county list of projects in the 2013-15 Senate Transportation Budget proposal, click here.


Please keep it civil. Don't post comments that are obscene, defamatory, threatening, off-topic, an infringement of copyright or an invasion of privacy. Read our forum standards and community guidelines.

You must be logged in to post comments. Please log in here or click the comment box below for options.

comments powered by Disqus
« Back to Spin Control

Get blog updates by email

About this blog

Jim Camden is a veteran political reporter for The Spokesman-Review.


Jonathan Brunt is an enterprise reporter for The Spokesman-Review.


Kip Hill is a general assignments reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

Nick Deshais covers Spokane City Hall for The Spokesman-Review.

Latest comments »

Read all the posts from recent conversations on Spin Control.

Search this blog
Subscribe to this blog
ADVERTISEMENT
Advertise Here