FINAL BILL REPORT
This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.
C 83 L 12
Synopsis as Enacted
Brief Description: Concerning eligible toll facilities.
Sponsors: Senate Committee on Transportation (originally sponsored by Senators Haugen and Fain; by request of Department of Transportation).
Senate Committee on Transportation
House Committee on Transportation
Background: The State Route 99 (SR 99) Alaskan Way Viaduct is a major arterial serving significant numbers of freight and passenger vehicles through downtown Seattle. The facility sustained damage during the 2001 Nisqually earthquake, and is susceptible to damage, closure, or catastrophic failure from additional earthquakes and tsunamis. ESSB 5768 enacted during the 2009 regular legislative session required the state to expedite the environmental review and design processes to replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct with a deep bore tunnel under First Avenue from the vicinity of the sports stadiums in Seattle to Aurora Avenue north of the Battery Street Tunnel. In addition, the SR 99 Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Project finance plan must include no more than $400 million in toll revenue.
ESHB 1773 enacted during the 2008 regular legislative session stated that all revenue from an eligible toll facility must be used only to construct, improve, preserve, maintain, manage, or operate the eligible toll facility on or in which the revenue is collected.
Summary: Tolling is authorized by the Legislature on the deep bore tunnel between First Avenue from the vicinity of the sports stadiums in Seattle to Aurora Avenue north of the Battery Street tunnel. The purpose of tolling the SR 99 Alaskan Way Viaduct is to help finance the project and to help maintain travel time, speed, and reliability on the portion of SR 99 that would be replaced by this project. The state tolling authority – Washington State Transportation Commission – is directed to impose a variable schedule of toll rates to maintain traffic flow. The state tolling authority may adjust the variable schedule of toll rates at least annually to reflect inflation and pay for the redemption of bonds and other obligations of the tolling authority.
The toll facility bond retirement account is allowed to retain its interest earnings to make it consistent with other toll accounts.
The Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Project Account (Account) is created. Deposits into the Account include all proceeds of bonds issued for construction of the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Project and all tolls and other revenues received from the operation of the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Project as a toll facility.
Various technical corrections are made to certain statutes impacted by previous tolling-related legislation.
Votes on Final Passage:
June 7, 2012