Re: "Road-and-transit deal deserves bipartisan support" (editorial, 2-18).
You celebrate a proposed 11.7 cent per gallon increase in the gas tax as a victory for the taxpayers of Washington, the home of the most regressive tax system in the country.
Our current gas tax is 55.9 cents per gallon, which as of January is seventh highest in the nation. An 11.7 cent increase would ratchet us up to third highest; 18.4 cents goes to the federal government, leaving 37.5 cents for Washington.
An 11.7 cent hike would be a staggering 31.2 percent increase. If, as you state, this increase would raise $15 billion, then the existing tax will raise more $48 billion during the same time period.
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Where is all the money going? Bloated bureaucracies, overpaid employees, and “market rate” labor for construction projects that take an eternity to complete?
I won’t name names, but certain state transportation officials reek of incompetence every time they open their mouths on the news. And we are supposed to dig deeper and trust these people to spend our hard-earned money efficiently and wisely? Bertha, anyone?
And completing state Route 167 between Puyallup and Tacoma is not going to be the magical solution that moves more cars and freight. Have any of you spent any time on this highway between Sumner and Auburn? It is a gridlocked mess northbound between 5 and 10 a.m., and southbound between 2 and 7 p.m.
Significant improvements are needed to the stretch from Sumner to Renton, but especially between Sumner and Auburn. More cars and trucks is not the solution.