Transportation2019-2020 Legislative Objectives
BackgroundTransportation infrastructure is critical to our state’s business climate and economic future. The 2003, 2005, and 2015 transportation revenue packages made significant progress in modernizing our transportation system, but left many important projects unfunded, including a growing backlog of annual maintenance and preservation costs. AWB generally supports continuing the conversation on providing additional and appropriate transportation funding strategies that will improve job creation, freight mobility, and commerce. The business community also recognizes the role of emerging technologies in the transportation sector, including autonomous vehicles, alternative fuels, app-based and on-demand services. With the adoption of this statewide transportation reform and revenue package and given these new technologies, AWB supports the following transportation objectives for the upcoming legislative session.
1. Protect commitments from the 2015 Connecting Washington revenue package; keep projects funded and on schedule; fully implement the reforms; keep maintenance and preservation dollars for its primary purpose and oppose diversion of funds to non-transportation purposes.
2. Support additional reforms that reduce project costs and delays, improve accountability, transparency, and efficiency on projects, budgeting, and the administration of programs and services.
3. Oppose regulations from other agencies that could unnecessarily drive up costs to transportation and transportation projects.
4. Support incentives, and oppose mandates for zero emission vehicles, for alternative fuel use and infrastructure and oppose implementing stricter fuel standards and other carbon pricing schemes that increase transportation and energy costs. AWB encourages lawmakers to recognize the role and benefits of all fuel types and not to choose winners or losers.
5. Oppose transportation legislation or the use of transportation resources that adversely affect Washington businesses or create competitive disadvantages.
6. Support implementation of tolling policies that are more transparent, accountable, and that improve mobility for all users in a corridor. Toll revenues should be intended for highway purposes and protected by the 18th amendment.
7. Support emerging transportation technologies that improve mobility, safety, and efficiency in the movement of people and goods among all modes. These technologies include but are not limited to autonomous vehicles, alternative fuels, app-based and on-demand services.
8. Support policies and appropriate investments that improve mobility and reduce traffic congestion, such as lane capacity and highway expansion projects.
9. Continue the conversation on a bi-state solution to the interstate crossing on I-5 between Vancouver and Portland.
10. Recognize and support policies and appropriate investments that improve the economic and environmental benefits of transporting freight on Washington’s roads, air, marine, and rail systems.
11. On-going freight rail development is critical to the state’s competitiveness in international trade and interstate commerce and the state should consider establishment of public-private programs to alleviate potential impacts to local communities.
12. Support policies that improve and provide appropriate funding for safety, preservation, infrastructure, and efficiency in the general aviation industry; and support an informed regional discussion about efforts to meet current demand and future commercial airport capacity and investments.
13. AWB supports improving salmon habitat by providing appropriate funding for culvert fish barrier replacement. Culvert improvements that provide the greatest benefit should be prioritized first, and funding should not jeopardize current highway preservation commitments.
For More InformationFor questions, please contact AWB’s Mike Ennis at 1.800.521.9325 or MikeE@awb.org
PDF version of this Legislative Objective