Legislature, Roger Millar, Department Of Transportation discussed on The Gee and Ursula Show

Automatic TRANSCRIPT

No more trap. Okay. I'm not exactly loving that bag of beer nuts. Oh, good. Let's just face but he's basically saying is we wanted to fulfill a mignon meal that we would have taken chicken, But they gave us a bag of peanuts pretty much to tide us over and we being the state Department of Transportation and They, like Many other agencies are going to the Legislature. Now that we're in session with their hands out going, we need help. The pandemic as you imagine, has decimated what they had forecasted for and what happened in December of November, December time frame of 2019. They kind of set out. Okay, Here's how much money we think we're going to get. And with that we will now fund the use particular projects well. The pandemic head and that nobody driving on the roads means less gas tax money. Nobody using toll lanes means less tolling money. I mean, they're losing out over their forecast, so they have $3 billion worth of stuff they promised to do, you know, road projects, maintenance, fish passage stuff. And they're down 1.3 billion, So they're going to the Legislature to ask for help. Hey, how can we back fill this in? Obviously the simplest answer and one that you most people are afraid of us. We're gonna have to find new revenue. Which means we're gonna have to go find new taxes. I mean, there's already been talk potentially of raising the gas tax again to try to help fill up some of this gap. There's already been talk of the fact that 5 20 tolls are going to have to go up even though they thought they were going. We're done with that five years ago because They can't pay off the bonds to pay for the construction of the 5 20 bridge. So, yeah, they're hurting and it's gonna be up to the Legislature to try to figure out what they can do to get the money back. And Roger Millar, the head of the Department of Transportation, that beer mint nuts, comment he was talking about. They had asked for help from the feds in Congress gave them in in a recovery package. 200 million, which sounds like a lot of money, but when you have $3 billion worth of responsibilities That's why 200 million to him is a bag of nuts. So if we don't have that $1.3 billion, what does that mean for us? That's what we're gonna do. We're waiting to find out exactly what the Legislature is going to have to do now because in the realities of what we're facing with the bank account in the state of Roger Millar, the head of the D O T says it's obvious something's that we promised. We're going to have to be pushed back. Some things are going to have to be deferred on. We don't know what those projects are yet because it's up to the Legislature to figure out what to fund with the money that they given a transportation projects. So we're not exactly sure what Might not be finished or what might have to be pushed back. Like, for instance, you know, finishing the 5 20 Bridge from Montlake over the high five is that you know going to be pushed back now because of this because they don't have the money, the extension of four or five and the widening of four or five That's getting underway this year to go down to rent in where we're adding another express toll lane there or the 167 Corridor or the Gateway Project, which continues 167 over the I five in the port of Tacoma. So we're gonna have to wait and see. But you know they've got to do some significant belt tightening and all these public agencies are hurting for money because of the pandemic, and so That's going to be the Legislature trying to have some very frank conversations to figure out what they're gonna fund. Now, Chris, I can hear people right now. Frustrated in pain broke. People don't have money. Are we really talking about We already have. The highest gas tax is one of them. Are we really gonna like Jack up prices in the middle of a time like this? Well, that's what a lot of Republican lawmakers and to be honest, Some Democrats are saying, You know, this now is not the time for this. But then the question is raised. How do we back fill that money that we thought we were going to get? And you're right. I mean, I've made this car come analogy several times during the pandemic, and when you see or I've made it, you know, government spending in general is You know why I go out and buy the five k t V or the four K TV when you can't pay your rent, Okay, Why don't we put you know We got people out there that are hurting. They're listening to show are cutting back there all cutting back on everything. Why shouldn't the government do the same? And I don't have a good answer for you on that. But yes, they are looking at potentially, you know, raising the gas tax for this And also let's not forget Governor. Inslee's climate agenda could add 50 cents automatically. To the gas tax for that. The climate stuff that he's looking at is now the right time to be pushing that in the middle of the global pandemic, your while people are struggling Tonto get their unemployment for nearly a year now. I mean, I I feel that from you, dres and those of the questions that lawmakers we're going to have to look themselves in the mirror at night and figure out okay. What are we doing here? And where is our priority? Well, the other thing, too, As you mentioned. Is there fewer people on the roads for your people using the roads? This could be what we're dealing with in the future as well. Is there much of an appetite for Okay, We're still going to need to spend the same amount of money that we were planning to. Even though we're not using the roads the same way. Well, some of the things you have to think about, for instance. Is the roads we already have. I know you used to. Now that you're you drive generally, Roosevelt, but you.

Coming up next