Support a Sustainable Transportation Package for Washington
The Washington State Legislature has introduced a $16 billion transportation package (Senate Bills 5970, 5971, and 5972) , which mostly consists of highway expansions. The proposal includes a small carbon tax of $15 per ton accounting for nearly half of the total transportation package revenue. However, the transportation package in its current form only invests 6% in walking, rolling, biking and transit*.
A carbon tax should be invested in non-road projects; highways don't fit the bill. Using a carbon tax for road expansion is self-defeating. More roads cause more driving, more congestion and more emissions. Plus we already have a revenue source for roads infrastructure, the gas tax.
We believe that the a transportation package must follow these principles:
Non gas tax revenue should fund walking, rolling, biking and public transit projects, especially ambitious projects like high speed rail.
All road infrastructure should be solely funded with gas tax money, prioritizing maintenance first.
No bike tax.
A carbon tax should adjust with inflation.
Highway investments must provide transit priority and should mitigate impacts on local communities with investments like lids.
It's time for Washington to pass a more sustainable transportation package.
*We’ve included the Washington Ferry System as part of car infrastructure since most of the costs are associated with transporting cars.