This week on “The Impact“:
Coming down to the wire, transportation leaders in the House and Senate work to find common ground on competing budget proposals. Toll lanes, new carbon tax revenue, road work, ferries and the I-5 Columbia River Bridge are all topics of discussion in this overview of big projects that could impact your household budget and commute.
“I mean cars are getting more fuel efficient. We’re moving to electric vehicles, but the need doesn’t go away. The need to have preservation and maintenance does not go away,” said Sen. Steve Hobbs, D-Lake Stevens, Chair, Senate Transportation Committee.
“That has been a concern because if we’re putting this burden upon the citizens that are using the highways, they’re not seeing the result it’s very disconcerting,” said Rep. Andrew Barkis, R-Olympia, Ranking Republican Member, House Transportation Committee.
Other transportation bills focus on discouraging drivers from blocking crosswalks or clogging up carpool lanes illegally. One plan involves using existing red light cameras to ticket drivers who pull up too far at stop lights. Another involves using powerful interstate cameras that can see through tinted windows to photograph the inside of vehicles.
“They caught 1500 people in less than a week violating the HOV and I think we need those penalties. I think we need to make sure that those are used for the correct purposes and transit’s moving in those lanes as best it can,” said Bryce Yadon, lobbyist for Transportation Choices Coalition.
“That is, I believe, an invasion of privacy where they’re taking pictures of you in your car. Right now that’s against state law in statute. So, it’s not just a simple case of raising the fines,” said Mark Harmsworth, former state representative and current WPC Research Fellow.