Community Transit wants you to buy local this holiday season

Now that the Christmas shopping season is almost here, Community Transit is asking consumers to “Buy Local for Transit.”

The agency says encouraging people to shop in their communities will strengthen local businesses and increase sales tax revenues, which supports public transportation. Community Transit is funded primarily through a portion of retail sales taxes generated in its service district, which is most of Snohomish County.

“Buy Local for Transit reminds residents that doing your holiday shopping right here in Snohomish County is an easy way to support local business and valuable services like Community Transit,” said Snohomish County Executive Reardon.

A Buy Local for Transit website has been set up with information about the program, a downloadable “I Buy Local for Transit” card and a list of participating businesses that will offer special discounts. Transit riders can show their ORCA card to get the discounts as well.

“We are always looking for new ways to bring customers in the door,” said Koko Niemi, owner of FASTSIGNS of Lynnwood. “The Buy Local for Transit program is a great idea at the right time. For us, this is a no-brainer.”

Community Transit gets most of its funding from a voter-approved 0.9 percent sales tax, or nine cents on a $10 purchase. With consumer spending down, the agency’s sales tax revenue has fallen by about $20 million a year. As a result, the agency had to make major service cuts, including eliminating all Sunday and holiday service.

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