[nfbwatlk] FW: Olympia jeopardizes light rail to the Eastside! Remind them that we want Mass Transit Now!
lawnmower84 at hotmail.com
Thu Apr 2 03:19:32 UTC 2009
From: Futurewise [mailto:Futurewise at mail.vresp.com]
Sent: Wednesday, April 01, 2009 3:24 PM
To: lawnmower84 at hotmail.com
Subject: Olympia jeopardizes light rail to the Eastside! Remind them that we
want Mass Transit Now!
Let's Remind Olympia that we want Mass Transit Now!
Last November central Puget Sound voters overwhelmingly supported
Proposition 1 to expand regional transit service-including the East Link
extension of light rail from downtown Seattle to Mercer Island, Bellevue and
Redmond. This was a huge victory for sustainable, reliable transportation in
Yet some legislators in Olympia seem to have forgotten the will of the
Over the past week, the state legislature has moved to gut the state's share
of funding for the East Link project and add additional road blocks to
further delay delivery of East Link!
Sound Transit and the state reached an agreement to jointly fund HOV lanes
over the I-90 bridge through the R8A project. Those lanes must be built
before the express lanes can be converted to light rail, and that
construction must start very soon to keep light rail to the eastside on
schedule. In order to bring light rail across Lake Washington as soon as
possible, Sound Transit doubled their contribution to this project to $90
million, and the state agreed to pay the remaining $24 million. The region
shouldered most of the burden of this project, and now the state is backing
out of their part - recently released budget proposals in the House and
Senate defund or postpone the project to 2017. Your representatives are
willing to halt a voter-approved $6 billion public investment in transit
that will create jobs, reduce congestion and decrease emissions, over $24
million of which was already funded by voters as part of the gas tax
increase in 2003.
The state legislature has also added another roadblock: a study to determine
how much the State can charge Sound Transit (i.e., regional voters and
taxpayers!) to use the I-90 bridge for light rail. We paid for this bridge
already, and they're asking us to pay for it again!
Please tell your legislators to hold up their end of the bargain. Many, like
Senator Fred Jarrett, Representative Judy Clibborn, and Speaker Frank Chopp,
represent districts that voted decisively for Proposition 1. You made your
decision, and it's time for them to represent you!
Thanks for all you do!
The Futurewise Team
Click the links below to contact House and Senate Transportation Leadership:
Rep. Judy Clibborn - Chair of House Transportation Committee:
<mailto:clibborn.judy at leg.wa.gov> clibborn.judy at leg.wa.gov
Rep. Marko Liias - Vice Chair of House Transportation Committee:
<mailto:liias.marko at leg.wa.gov> liias.marko at leg.wa.gov
Rep. Frank Chopp - Speaker of the House: <mailto:chopp.frank at leg.wa.gov>
chopp.frank at leg.wa.gov
Senator Mary Margaret Haugen - Chair of Senate Transportation Committee:
<mailto:haugen.marymargaret at leg.wa.gov> haugen.marymargaret at leg.wa.gov
Senator Chris Marr - Vice Chair of Senate Transportation Committee:
<mailto:marr.chris at leg.wa.gov> marr.chris at leg.wa.gov
Senator Fred Jarrett - Member of Senate Transportation Committee:
<mailto:jarrett.fred at leg.wa.gov> jarrett.fred at leg.wa.gov
The email address for your legislator can be found at:
TEXT of email to legislators:
The voters have spoken. Last year they voted overwhelmingly in the Puget
Sound region to expand light rail. The proposed House and Senate
transportation budgets cut funding for the R8A project across the I-90
bridge which is critical for light rail expansion to the Eastside. The R8A
project will allow light rail to be put in the center express lanes of the
I-90 bridge and move all day HOV lanes to the outer section of the bridge.
R8A will result in no capacity loss and is crucial for paving the way for
light rail to the eastside which will connect Seattle, Mercer Island,
Bellevue, and Redmond.
The state has agreed to fund $24 million for this project and we urge you to
restore funding for this project. Please do not jeopardize a voter-approved
$6 billion public investment in transit that will create jobs, reduce
congestion and decrease emissions.
Now is not the time to be limiting transportation choices. Light rail will
connect our regional job centers and provide a vital transportation option
for thousands of commuters everyday. If funding for this project is delayed
or cut, it will result in a delay in the planned extension of light rail to
Mercer Island, Bellevue and Redmond beyond 2017.
Please don't ignore the will of the voters. I urge you to restore funding
to this important shovel-ready project which will set the stage for a
regional rail system in the Puget Sound. Your leadership will help give our
region more freedom from volatile gas prices and traffic congestion.
Your gift supports our work to manage growth and stop sprawl around the
(206) 343-0681 | info at futurewise.org
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