In a “citizens’ guide” to this fall’s Proposition 1 vote, a Seattle-based organization this week called the measure a referendum on light rail. The conclusion comes from the Washington Policy Center, a conservative-leaning think tank.
The report doesn’t specifically take a position on the measure, but it is critical of the plan to help fund a pair of high-capacity transit projects in Clark County. Among its findings is the potential harm to Vancouver businesses if Washington residents use new transit options to shop in Portland.
Proposition 1 would raise the sales tax rate by 0.1 percentage point within C-Tran’s service district. The resulting revenue would help pay for a proposed bus rapid transit line on Vancouver’s Fourth Plain corridor, plus operation of a light rail extension to Clark College planned as part of the $3.5 billion Columbia River Crossing project.
C-Tran leaders and others have characterized Proposition 1 as a funding question, nothing more. The C-Tran board finalized the measure earlier this year after exploring alternative funding options for light rail.
Ballots for the Nov. 6 election will be mailed next month.