SB 5088

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.

As Reported by Senate Committee On:

Governmental Operations, January 29, 2013

Title: An act relating to the equal distribution of votes within certain taxing districts.

Brief Description: Concerning the equal distribution of votes within certain taxing districts.

Sponsors: Senators Benton, Rivers, Holmquist Newbry, Honeyford and Becker.

Brief History:

Committee Activity: Governmental Operations: 1/28/13, 1/29/13 [DP, DNP].


Majority Report: Do pass.

Signed by Senators Roach, Chair; Benton, Vice Chair; Braun and Rivers.

Minority Report: Do not pass.

Signed by Senators Conway, Fraser and Hasegawa, Ranking Member.

Staff: Sam Thompson (786-7413)

Background: A 2009 act authorized transit agencies in border counties with populations of 400,000 or greater, currently Clark and Spokane counties, to establish independent local government entities called high capacity transportation corridor areas (HCTCAs) to finance and operate transit services in urbanized areas. An HCTCA may be smaller than the area served by the transit agency.

An HCTCA may use varied revenue sources to finance operations, including sales and use taxes, if authorized by voters in the HCTCA. They may also issue general obligation bonds. As of yet, no HCTCA has been established.

Summary of Bill: It is the intent of the Legislature that when a transit agency plans to raise revenue requiring voter approval to create a high capacity transportation system, all eligible voters within the transit agency's boundaries must have the opportunity to vote.

Provisions authorizing HCTCAs and granting them authority to issue bonds are repealed.

Appropriation: None.

Fiscal Note: Not requested.

Committee/Commission/Task Force Created: No.

Effective Date: Ninety days after adjournment of session in which bill is passed.

Staff Summary of Public Testimony: PRO: All voters in a transit agency's jurisdiction should be given the opportunity to vote on ballot propositions to impose taxes in an HCTCA.

CON: The option to create an HCTCA should not be eliminated. Transit agencies need the flexibility that this option provides.

Persons Testifying: PRO: Mike Burgess, Clark County.

CON: Michael Shaw, WA State Transit Assn.; Jennifer Ziegler, C-Tran, Clark County Transit.