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November 29, 2011 at 12:24 PM

State: Support strong for higher transportation taxes, fees

Nearly two-thirds of the state’s residents say they would be willing to support an increase in state transportation taxes and fees to support a transportation system.

The results were released Tuesday by the state Transportation Commission, which surveyed 5,500 state residents in an online poll.

The survey was conducted in preparation for a transportation-related ballot measure in 2012 that will likely include higher taxes and fees, according to the Washington Policy Center.

The residents were asked how they feel about the transportation system, what their priorities are, and how the state should pay for it.

It found 62 percent would support an increase in taxes if they would benefit more transportation projects.  Respondents said the money should go first to maintaining and repairing the existing system.

As for what form new revenue would take, 61 percent support a vehicle emissions fee, 60 percent back a special license for electric vehicles and 52 percent support tolls. About half, 46 percent, said they support an increase in the state gas tax.

The survey found 62 percent support variable tolling, where tolls change depending on the time of day, and 63 percent back tolling express lanes, where single occupant vehicles can buy into the HOV lanes.

It also found that 57 percent support using state money to pay for the ferry system, and the support grew to 64 percent when respondents learned that ferry riders pay about 70 percent of ferry operations.

Comments | More in General news | Topics: emissions, HOV lanes, taxes

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