A previous letter (Courier-Herald, Sept. 21) gave us an overview of the tax environment in the Washington State mentioning the upcoming ballot wherein Sound Transit is floating a $54 billion initiative to extend their train and transit system.
Homeowners in particular need to be very wary of this proposal as ST has, for the first time, access to your property taxes. Property taxes have traditionally been used for local schools and firefighting. The ST tax provides little or no benefit to may local areas. Other taxes will increase to finance ST, sales tax, a proposed 50 percent ST increase and motor vehicle fees, a three-fold increase. It is important to understand that these are not temporary increases, they do not sunset at the end of this 25-year project. Our children and grandchildren will be paying for this project out to 2071. As with any public works project there has to be a cost vs. benefit factor. This proposal offers nothing close to reasonable.
Many of us have had occasion to ride a link or commuter train, work, Seahawks game, airport and maybe just because it’s there. The current network does a good job of covering the south Puget Sound corridor. ST runs a nice bus system transporting hundreds of thousands of riders annually. Entering into the light and commuter rail business has created a costly and inflexible system that serves a very small segment of daily commuters and has done nothing to limit the ever worsening traffic congestion. STs $$54 billion proposal represents two things, a massive debt with very little positive impact and diversion of tax dollars from desperately needed transit and road projects.
Tell ST no.