An unreleased poll by a coalition including the Cascade Bicycle Club, Transportation Choices Coalition, and the Downtown Seattle Association concludes that likely Seattle voters are willing to support a new vehicle license fee of up to $80 to pay for additional transit service.
According to sources familiar with the poll results, a strong majority of poll respondents said they'd support the license fee, which would come on top of a $20 license fee the council approved earlier this year, to pay to expand "transit speed and reliability" through improvements like an expanded streetcar system.
The city also has the option of asking voters to approve a sales tax of up to 0.2 percent, or implementing tolls on city streets. Not surprisingly, the sales tax polled poorly. In a separate survey commissioned by the Citizens Transportation Advisory Committee, a slim majority of voters said they would support tolls on city streets.
Additionally, the poll found that the license fee wouldn't hurt the $231 million Families and Education Levy if the fee went on the ballot alongside the levy in November---good news for transit supporters, who had worried that adding another fee to the ballot could cause support for the education levy to lag.
Finally, the poll found that voters were more likely to support transit expansion than basic maintenance---partly, some suggested, because the question about maintenance referred to funding maintenance "instead of" transit expansion.
The city council has just 11 weeks to put any funding package on the ballot.
The full poll results should be released in the next week or two.