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Impacts of I-976

I-976 threatens projects across the state, including projects that have been approved by local voters.

Projects at Risk

Here is more detail about the transportation projects threatened by I-976.

“Connecting Washington”

The Legislature developed and passed Connecting Washington in 2015 with bipartisan support. The package makes critical investments in our transportation system, and funds large projects across the state. I-976 puts critical projects in danger of never being completed. It also weakens our whole economy by keeping us from moving people and goods efficiently around the state. Projects in the Connecting Washington package that have not started construction or still have significant construction work remaining include:

  • Completion of widening over I-90/Snoqualmie Pass
  • North/South freeway/US 395 project in Spokane
  • SR 520 West End
  • I-405 widening
  • SR 167/SR 509 Puget Sound Gateway

Ferries, Rail & Freight Mobility

Roads are not the only projects in danger: Our farmers and manufacturers depend on good rail and freight mobility, and commuters, residents and visitors all depend on a safe and robust ferry system.

  • $1.3 billion in ferry vessel improvements between now and 2031
  • Amtrak service connecting Western Washington with British Columbia and Oregon
  • Freight mobility projects like new bridges, railroad sidings, better port roads, and heavy rail corridor improvements support agriculture and manufacturing

Safety

  • Washington State Patrol ($15 million a year at risk)
  • Highway safety projects including retrofitting bridges and overpasses

Transportation Options

The public increasingly wants robust transportation options, which is why multimodal transit is important.

  • Vanpools
  • Special needs transit (seniors, veterans, disabled)
  • Regional Mobility Grants (about $100 million every two years)
  • Expansion of transit and bus centers, such as Rapid Ride Lines, Bus Rapid Transit, expansion of park and ride facilities, safe routes to schools, pedestrian safety, bike infrastructure

Local Transportation Benefit Districts (TBD):  $60 million in funding every year is at risk to pay for road construction, maintenance and local transit service in 62 cities. Cities who currently use the TBD authority for car tabs can be found below or on the state’s website.

Sound Transit: $20 billion in funding is at risk for multi-county light rail expansion, bus rapid transit and commuter rail that will create new connections in King, Pierce and Snohomish counties. Voters approved the third Sound Transit package in 2016.

Resources

The state did an analysis of I-976 when it was being considered by the Legislature in the 2019 session. Here are some supporting documents, detailing the projected project impact.

Detailed Fiscal Note (July 23 2019)

Summary Sheet (Feb. 2019)

Detailed Fiscal Note (Office of Financial Management, Feb. 2019)

The below list includes the 62 cities which rely on vehicle fees to fund local transportation projects. I-976 will eliminate $60 million in funding every year for these cities.
Data provided by the Department of Licensing.

CityVehicle Fee
Anacortes$20
Bainbridge Island$30
Battle Ground$20
Black Diamond$20
Bremerton$20
Bridgeport$20
Buckley$20
Burien$20
Carbonado$20
Covington$20
Des Moines$40
DuPont$20
Edgewood$20
East Wenatchee$20
Eatonville$20
Electric City$20
Elmer City$20
Edmonds$20
Enumclaw$20
Everett$20
Fife$20
George$20
Grandview$20
Granite Falls$20
Kalama$40
Kelso$20
Kenmore$20
Kittitas$20
Lake Forest Park$40
Lakewood$20
Longview$20
Lynnwood$40
Mabton$20
Maple Valley$20
Mercer Island$20
Moses Lake$20
Mountlake Terrace$20
Normandy Park$20
Olympia$40
Orting$20
Port Orchard$20
Prosser$25
Richland$20
Ridgefield$20
Roy$20
Royal City$20
Seattle$80
Sedro-Woolley$20
Shoreline$40
Snoqualmie$20
Soap Lake$20
Spokane$20
Tacoma$20
Toppenish$20
University Place$35
Vancouver$40
Wapato$20
Washougal$20
Wenatchee$20
Wilkeson$20
Yakima$20
Zillah$20