Hey, dummy! You have just one more day to get in your ballot in favor of Proposition 1, the measure that will save Metro service!
Without the new 0.1-cent sales tax and $60 vehicle license fee, Metro could have to cut service as much as 17 percent, or 650,000 hours a year (the best-case scenario is for 550,000 hours a year in cuts), eliminating nighttime routes and slowing service on already crowded routes that will become less frequent without new funding.
The potential cuts come courtesy of the state legislature, which for two years has failed to pass new funding for transportation. Oh, and if you live in or ever travel through unincorporated King County, the cuts will also impact road funding—fully 40 percent of Proposition 1 would fund road repairs and maintenance.
Seattle Transit Blog, which has obviously been covering the hell out of this issue, has two last-minute pieces explaining why you should vote to save transit funding.
The first is by Adam Parast, who provides a list of opportunities (with pizza!) to vote for the measure. The second, appropriately titled, "Closing Argument," is by Martin Duke, who argues eloquently,
Rejection of this tax will not rally the legislature to produce a more progressive taxing source. Deep cuts to transit service are not going to punish the forces that keep our taxes regressive, and in fact will give them a solid argument that even King County voters just don’t care about preserving transit service levels.
Minor efficiencies aren’t worth deep cuts. True, a crisis at Metro might wring some concessions out of the union, but not enough to make up for the cuts, the suffering of the transit dependent, and the numbers of people who will give up on Metro and decide it’s useless for them. It is no way to build a system. The really big restructures over the past half-decade are connected to qualitatively new service — Link and RapidRide — rather than the specter of cuts. A growing system is easier to restructure than a shrinking one.
If you think Metro is a pretty good agency, vote Yes. If you think Metro could improve greatly, stand with the experts on Metro improvement at STB and vote Yes.