Last Wednesday evening, July 27th, the Lynnwood Transportation Benefit District (TBD), made up exclusively of City Council members, voted 4-2 to raise car tab fees for Lynnwood residents by $20. These funds will go to help pay for much needed road repair. This is a final vote that doesn’t go to the ballot and becomes law I believe early next year. While not a huge or critical story, I think Lynnwood citizens mostly didn’t know about the vote and may be surprised the next year when they get their renewal notice. If the Sound Transit ballot measure passes this fall for Sound Transit 3 (ST3), the car tab fee will go up by another $80. That would be a total of $100!
I personally was not in favor of this measure because it punishes only Lynnwood citizens and it a regressive tax that hurts the poor the most. I commend the Lynnwood TBD for trying to fix our roads, something that I was in favor of while on the City Council. But the answer is in more of a broad look at city revenues and by tapping sources of funds that include the contributions of users. I will support the 0.1 percent sales tax measure that is on the ballot in November, because the money would come from all those who buy goods and services in Lynnwood and not just Lynnwood Citizens.
There was also recently an idea floated by Councilmember Hurst that would raise property taxes to fund roads. This is called a Levy Lid Lift. I’m also not in favor of that because once again, I don’t believe in raising taxes of only Lynnwood residents to pay for something that all who use the roads will benefit from.