Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Olympia Wrap-Up: Gains Made in the Legislature but State Leaves Transit Hanging by a Thread

Below is the e-mail we sent out to our supporters today summarizing the legislative session. Feel free to post questions in the comment section.

The 2010 Legislative Session was an Olympic-sized roller coaster. This session was tough because it was primarily focused on the general budget crisis. But don't worry, all of your hard work as a dedicated TCC member did have an impact! We were successful in creating a groundswell of awareness on our issues and organizing our legislative supporters around transit funding and other priorities.

Transit Funding

Thanks to the heroic efforts of some of our House champions, like Reps. Marko Liias and Geoff Simpson, we were able to successfully pass an emergency transit funding measure off the House floor by a wide margin. Unfortunately, the bill didn't make it all the way to the Governor's desk, but it was still a great show of strength for our issues. With transit agencies facing financial free falls and nowhere else to turn for revenues, agencies across the State are making or planning for drastic service cuts. We're optimistic that the Senate will also step up for transit in the next session and we'll get a long-term transit funding bill on the Governor's desk this time next year.

Complete Streets

We had a great hearing on House Bill 2911, which would have positioned Washington as one of the first states in the country to adopt a statewide Complete Streets policy. With the help of Rep. Jim Moeller and Chair Judy Clibborn, legislation easily moved out of the House Transportation Committee. While it did not come up for a floor vote, it was a great start to getting the conversation going on statewide Complete Streets and we're working on putting together a funded proposal in future sessions.

Thanks for all of your hard work this session...while our gains this year were modest, we were able to drum up awareness during this tough legislative year and we would not have been able to do that without you!

Publicola did a quick post on the contents of the e-mail on their blog.
The Sierra Club also posted their legislative wrap up today, which is worth a read.

Thanks for all you do!

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