July 29, 2020
The Seattle City Council approved the Seattle Transportation Benefit District ballot measure this week in a 9-0 vote that will renew funding and preserve existing Metro service. The legislation is expected to raise between $30 and $45 million a year to invest in transit service and transit access priorities over the next six years.
Seattle Mayor Jenny A. Durkan is expected to sign the measure in the coming days and it will be placed on the November 2020 ballot for consideration by Seattle voters.
Mayor Durkan says, “As we begin the long journey of economic recovery for Seattle and our most vulnerable residents, we must invest in equity. While we know sales tax is a regressive and flawed revenue tool, we believe a small increase of .05% will allow the City to invest in additional programs to promote equity and maintain the transit service relied upon by so many residents.”
In addition to maintaining a robust, connected transit network and critical programs like ORCA Opportunity and free transit for low-income residents, this Transportation Benefit District proposal will focus on investing in neighborhoods with acute mobility challenges, like West Seattle, and neighborhoods that historically face environmental injustices, like South Park and the Duwamish Valley.
To aid in recovery for residents disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Transportation Benefit District will focus resources on investing in routes that serve working people, communities of color, and transit-dependent neighborhoods.
For comments, questions or concerns, please contact Dennis Kaiser