Transportation Commission Office - PO Box 47308 - Olympia, WA 98504-7308
Date: May 13, 2015
Contact: Reema Griffith, Transportation Commission Executive Director, 360-705-7070
OLYMPIA – People interested in the toll rates for the Tacoma Narrows Bridge will have one more opportunity to comment. The Washington State Transportation Commission will hold a final hearing on its rate increase proposal on Wednesday, May 20, in Gig Harbor.
The commission is proposing a 50 cent increase in 2015 and an additional 50 cent increase in 2016. The new rates would take effect on July 1 each year.
The commission held two public input meetings last month and has been gathering input via email, phone, mail, and online discussions. The commission is expected to take action on a rate increase at the hearing. The public will have the chance to comment before commissioners take a vote.
- 6 – 8 p.m., Wednesday, May 20, Gig Harbor Civic Center, 3510 Grandview Street, Gig Harbor
The rate increase reflects the recommendations made by the Tacoma Narrows Bridge Citizen Advisory Committee. The proposed toll rates for July 1, 2015 are as follows:
- $5 for Good To Go!
- $6 cash
- $7 Pay By Mail
The commission is required by law to set toll rates for the Tacoma Narrows Bridge in an amount that is sufficient to pay the annual debt payment increases for the bridge, as well as to pay for costs related to maintenance, preservation and operations of the bridge.
The commission evaluates several factors in arriving at its rate proposal, including bridge expenses that are paid for by toll revenue, trends in traffic volumes, the schedule for bond payments, ending balances in the toll revenue account, the rate recommendations from the governor-appointed Tacoma Narrows Bridge Citizen Advisory Committee and public input.
The bridge was financed with an escalating debt structure to minimize the initial toll rates and impact on bridge users. Debt payments started out low when the bridge opened to traffic in 2007 and are now rising steeply, requiring additional toll revenue each year to pay the escalating obligation. Over the next four fiscal years, debt service payments grow from $53 million in 2015 to almost $73 million in 2019.
For more information about the commission visit: www.wstc.wa.gov/
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