Major Accomplishments, Transportation

Delivery of Landmark Transportation Reforms, Efficiencies, and Greater Accountability (01-03)

  • Won a $4.2 billion transportation package in 2003 to rebuild and expand Washington highways and mass transit systems, authorizing spending over 10 years to build and expand highway lanes and interchanges, make highways safer, get freight to market more quickly and provide commuters with transit, rail and other alternatives to driving. Made the Department of Transportation more accountable and took scores of other steps to improve the state’s transportation system.

Delivery of Landmark Transportation Reforms, Efficiencies, and Greater Accountability (01-03)

  • Appointed Blue Ribbon Commission on Transportation to recommend badly needed long-term transportation revenue strategy, adopted their final recommendations, and secured enactment of virtually all recommendations (below).
  • Environmental permit streamlining to speed up projects and environmental protection and mitigation.
  • Design-build contracting and ferry vessel procurement reform, to ensure on-time, on-budget project delivery.
  • Contracting out for construction services, another project delivery tool for transportation.
  • Transportation apprenticeships to strengthen our transportation workforce.
  • Performance benchmarks and other new oversight measures ensure accountability and build public confidence.
  • Tying transportation projects directly to new revenues, so taxpayers know exactly what they’re paying for.
  • Empowering regions to partner with the state and federal governments to speed up critical regional transportation projects.
  • Financing and approval to build a new Tacoma Narrows Bridge.

Improving Mobility of Freight

  • Fought to secure over $1 billion in new state and local freight mobility projects in statewide transportation plan. (Ref. 51)
  • Created and provided significant funding for a targeted program for the movement of freight and goods.

Relieving Traffic Congestion and Easing Delays

  • Targeted investments in key urban corridors impacted by congestion.
  • Increased funding for service patrols and other highway incident response efforts to keep traffic flowing.
  • Secured enactment of legislation empowering regions to partner with state and federal transportation investments.
  • Created Roving Incident Response Patrols to ease traffic delays from crashes and breakdowns, which cause 60 percent of all traffic delays.

Encouraging Car-Pooling and Mass Transit

  • Provided high occupancy vehicle lane investments.
  • Restoration of the Commute Trip Reduction Tax Credit.
  • Worked to secure $450 million in direct distribution to transit operators statewide. (Ref. 51)

Shortening the Wait for Licenses

  • Diminished wait times at DOL with additional staff and issuance of a five-year driver’s license.
  • Initiated and expanded on-line web site registration renewal services at DOL.

Strengthening Ferries and Rail

  • Improved the state ferry system process for designing and building new auto ferries.
  • Fought for $688 million in new ferry system investments for vessels and terminals. (Ref. 51)
  • Provided funding for a second Amtrak round trip between Seattle and Vancouver, B.C. and additional train cars to enhance capacity.
  • Fought for state matching dollars to secured anticipated $1 billion in federal rail investments. (Ref. 51)

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