McKenna on KIRO: Driverless cars in the near future

KIRO 97.3’s Dave Ross talked with Rob about Google’s ambitions to build and sell driverless cars. Ross reported that the NHTSA “said this week that, for purposes of the regulations, Google’s software can be considered as the ‘driver’ of the car.” Ross: “Wouldn’t that be sort of like flypaper for personal injury lawyers, considering that […]

Dumbest option is letting county road system fail

King County’s road system, all 1,486 miles of it, is in crisis. The system’s annual maintenance needs are about $350 million, but the current funding mechanisms only bring in about $90 million. That’s a huge gap, and every year the backlog of needed repairs and maintenance is growing. We’re talking about a roads system that […]

An honest study on transpo increases reveals a big problem

From time to time, we all need to take a step back and evaluate the picture. That’s true of our personal lives, but it’s just as true of government and its efforts, too. That’s why a new report from former state Transportation secretary Doug MacDonald is so valuable. MacDonald started with a seemingly simple question: […]

Telling the truth is more than not lying

Trust is a fleeting thing. It takes a long time to build it, but it can be wiped away in an instant. That’s why it’s perplexing that Gov. Jay Inslee is considering instituting a low-carbon fuel standard (LCFS) by executive order. This was a major point of contention during negotiations this year over the new state transportation package. In […]

State transportation plan balances reforms, investments

The Legislature has passed the first new transportation funding package in a decade. Credit is due to Senate Transportation Committee Chair Curtis King (R-Yakima) and ranking member Steve Hobbs (D-Lake Stevens), House Transportation Committee Chair Judy Clibborn (D-Mercer Island) and ranking member Ed Orcutt (R-Kalama) and other legislative leaders for being at the table for […]

Legislators need to monitor WSDOT closely for taxpayers

One of the best pieces of news to come out of the just-concluded legislative session was passage of a new transportation package. On SGW we called it “the right package at the right time,” and it’s quite an accomplishment. It comes after a drawn-out, sometimes contentious debate that began in earnest in 2013. The package […]

2015 session: Took too long, pretty good results, one huge issue remains

At the end of the day – 176 days, actually – Washington’s legislature ended up having a pretty solid and productive session this year. May we never see its like again. From a policy perspective, we’d be fortunate to have many more years like this one. From a governance perspective? Not so much. The issues […]

Passing transpo package the smart, conservative choice

With the operating budget finally in the books, a potential transportation package is the Legislature’s only remaining big issue. This economy-boosting package passed overwhelmingly in the Senate last night on a 39-9 vote. Its fate now rests in the House. This is the right package at the right time. It makes positive reforms that conservatives […]

Oregon rethinks low-carbon fuels standard

The fate of a new, much-needed transportation package remains an unknown in the protracted budget negotiations in Olympia. House Democrats even asked their transportation chair, Rep. Judy Clibborn (D-41) to cease negotiating with her Senate counterparts until an operating budget deal is struck. Talks did finally resume today. While not surprising, it’s too bad the […]

Transpo package shouldn’t be delayed over low-carbon fuels standard

As negotiations over the state budget drag on in during this second overtime session, a statewide transportation package will continue to languish until a budget deal is reached. The transportation package is sitting there, ready to go. Legislative leaders largely agree on the size of the package, the projects it will build, and how it […]