The Washington State Senate has rejected a transportation plan totaling $10 billion, leaving the Metro Transit system scrambling. The package would have helped to fund the Metro service, but despite efforts by Governor Jay Inslee to pass the plan, it failed after being approved by the House. The plan included a 10.5 cent increase in gas taxes which would have supported a series of large projects.
Now, the Metro system is saying that service will most likely be cut by 17% next year, which is not good news at all for riders. Many will have to re-plan their routes, which often include daily commutes. Rob Johnson, leader of the Transportation Choices Coalition, supported the plan and says that now the Metro system will suffer greatly. He expects the busses to get hotter, louder and dirtier. In addition, he believes that more people will start driving as well, causing more traffic and overall congestion on the roads.
For the time being, it seems that hope is lost. Those who rejected the plan will probably not have another developed and ready for consideration until next year. Metro riders, hold tight. It’s going to be a bumpy ride.