Today's winner: Transit advocates in Olympia.

Feeling emboldened by the success of an emergency transit funding bill in the state senate (Sen. Scott White's bill, though scaled back from its original version, would allow the King County Council, or voters, to approve a $20 vehicle-license fee to help fill Metro's funding shortfall), transit advocates White (D-46, N. Seattle) and Rep. Marko Liias (D-21, Edmonds) have proposed new legislation that would allow local governments to ask voters for a number of new funding sources for transit.

Possible funding sources would include a motor vehicle excise tax, a fuel-efficiency tax that would be lower on people with fuel-efficient cars; and a sales tax on gasoline. Unlike the emergency funding tax, the new taxes could apply to transit agencies outside King County, including Pierce Transit and Community Transit.

Although the cutoff date for introducing legislation and passing it out of its house of origin has passed in both the house and senate, legislation can be introduced after cutoff through a variety of mechanisms, including tacking it on to unrelated legislation or arguing that the legislation is necessary to pass the state budget.
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