Wednesday, August 30, 2006

A Rising Ride?

Submitted by Paul Ellis

Riding in cars with boys--and others--in Tacoma may soon be more pleasant but also more costly. Last evening, members of the Tacoma City Council unanimously passed Resolution 36958 to put a six-year, $48 million street maintenance levy on the Nov. 7 ballot.

According to the resolution, Tacoma's city limits include 8,800 blocks of residential streets but current funding levels support maintenance each year for no more than 25 blocks. If approved by voters, the levy will provide $8 million additional each year for six years.

The City Council's action just gets the ball rolling, however. Bad streets are a big issue for Tacoma's residents, but they will want the City to answer questions about where the money will go and why taxes they’re already paying aren’t enough to fix the streets. RAMP will provide a forum for airing the issues at an upcoming meeting.

Paul Ellis is lead staff for RAMP; an employee of the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber, Ellis led the Pierce County Transportation Advisory Committee (PCTAC), the community’s largest transportation planning effort.

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