Hague Opponent: County Council Member "Afraid of Her Own Party" on Transit

By Erica C. Barnett April 26, 2011

Richard Mitchell, the Mercer Island attorney and former counsel to Gov. Chris Gregoire who's challenging King County Council member Jane Hague, jumped on news (first reported on PubliCola earlier this week) that Hague won't vote for a temporary vehicle license fee to pay for emergency funding for King County Metro. The state legislature approved the fee earlier this month.

Hague supported an earlier version of the legislation that would have allowed a larger ($30) fee and would have enabled the county council to pass the fee with a simple majority vote; the version that passed limits the fee to $20 and requires a supermajority council vote or a simple majority vote of the people.

In a statement, Mitchell said, “Jane Hague was for transit funding before she was against it. Sadly, she’s too scared of her own political party to make the tough choices needed to keep our bus lines operating. Without transit, commuters—half of Metro’s daily riders—will be forced back into their cars, causing gridlock and additional traffic on 520 and I-5.”

Metro estimates the fee would enable it to preserve 600,000 hours of service---the equivalent of all service to the Eastside---that would otherwise be cut.

Hague, who's up for reelection in November, has drawn three opponents so far---Mitchell, former Bellevue city council member Patsy Bonincontri, and Seattle Port Commission member John Creighton.

Bonincontri has not reported raising any money yet. At the end of March, Hague, Creighton, and Mitchell reported $49,645, $31,589, and $26,477 on hand, respectively
Show Comments