Election season is upon us! Will the Democrats hold on to their tenuous lead in the Senate? Who knows? We have no say in it! Patty Murray isn’t up for re-election until 2016 and Maria Cantwell sits tight until 2018.
But, we do have a few things that we can vote on, including Proposition 1, a Seattle-only alternative to the King County Proposition 1 transit bill that lost a special election this August. The Wallingford members of the Environmental Caucus of the 43rd District Democratic Organization sent in this policy statement on our new Prop 1:
Transit Vote Comes Round Again!
After the defeat by voters in rural King County of the country-wide Metro Transit measure in the Primary Election, the Seattle City Council decided to put a Seattle-only Metro Transit proposition on the General Election ballot. There’s more than one Proposition 1 but this one can be found all alone on the back side of your November ballot. You have look for it.
43rd District Democrats urge you to vote Yes. Why?
Wallingford and University district buses are some of the most over crowded routes in the system. A recent Seattle Department of Transportation study has identified the #16 as a route that scores low on three counts: reliability, crowding and frequency of service. The #44 scores low on crowding and reliability. The #31/32 needs to improve reliability and increase frequency of service. The #26 and #26Express need to improve reliability. All this adds up to a high priority for improved service on all the lines that serve Wallingford if Transit Proposition 1 passes.
Even the Seattle Times has endorsed the Seattle-only Transit Proposition 1. Despite an improved revenue forecast for Metro and the recent postponement of planned service cuts, the Seattle Times editorial board concluded that additional funding for Metro to support the growing need for transit in Seattle is justified and that Proposition 1 should be supported.
Why did we hear that there was no more need for additional taxes and the planned bus cuts could all be cancelled? In addition to improved revenue forecast, a majority of the County Council decided they could raid Metro’s rainy day fund to come up with enough more money to avoid this year’s planned cuts. But that is not a sustainable solution. If Metro does avoid cuts, we can use the Seattle-only funds in Transit Proposition 1 to improve bus service on the many very overcrowded routes in the City, including Wallingford’s buses. If they don’t, Seattle will have the funds to backfill and avoid further destruction of our bus system.
To find the Seattle-only Metro funding Transit Proposition 1, you will need to look on the back side of your ballot when you get it this Thursday or Friday. Here is the full text of the ballot title:
“If approved, this proposition would fund Metro Transit service benefitting the City of Seattle, by preventing planned service cuts and, if funds allow, enhancing transit service, at least until state or regional authorities provide replacement revenues. The measure would authorize an annual vehicle license fee of up to an additional $60 per registered vehicle with a $20 rebate for low-income individuals and authorize up to a 0.1% sales and use tax, both expiring by 12/31/2020, all as proposed in Resolution 12.”
The Environmental Caucus of the 43rd District Democratic Organization urges you to vote Yes to secure the future of the Seattle bus system.
A summary of the Proposition 1 can be found on the Seattle Voters Guide site as can the full text.
Nota bene: Proposition 1 is not the same thing as Propositions 1a and 1b (which concerns “early learning programs and providers of such services for children”) nor Citizen Petition 1 (which concerns the monorail).
(Photo by Oran Viriyincy)