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Governor Gregoire Signs Bill to Investigate Regional Solutions to Large Transportation Needs

For Immediate Release: March 29, 2006

Measure will evaluate transportation planning in Puget Sound region

OLYMPIA – Governor Chris Gregoire in Olympia today signed into law a measure that creates a new Regional Transportation Commission to evaluate transportation governance and planning in the central Puget Sound region and develop a proposal for regional transportation governance options (HB 2871).

“When it comes to improving transportation in the Puget Sound region, we’ve been planning for far too long and we need to get to work. This bill marks a huge step forward on transportation improvements in the Puget Sound region,” said Governor Gregoire.

An expert review panel will be established for the Alaskan Way Viaduct replacement project and the State Route 520 bridge replacement. The panel will review finance and implementation plans for each project and report findings by September 1, 2006 to Governor Gregoire, the Office of Financial Management and the Joint Transportation Committee. Meanwhile, the Seattle City Council must indicate a preferred alternative for Alaskan Way or refer the choice to voters by November 2006.

The measure modifies the planning and revenue statutes of the existing Regional Transportation Investment District and requires that a roads/transit ballot measure be submitted by the RTID and Sound Transit for the 2007 general election.

King, Pierce, and Snohomish counties are authorized to establish single-county Regional Transportation Investment Districts and transportation benefit districts for broadly defined local transportation projects after December 1, 2007.

Safe and Effective Health Technologies
Governor Gregoire also signed into law a measure she requested that will establish a state-coordinated evidence-based process for evaluating health technologies, the first program of its kind in the nation (HB 2575). She vetoed Section 6 of the bill, which provides for an appeals process that may lead to less efficient determinations concerning technologies.

“This bill ensures that the state will use its limited resources for health technologies that are proven safe and effective,” said Governor Gregoire.

For information on all bill action, please visit Governor Gregoire's website or the Washington Legislature website.

Legislation signed today by Governor Gregoire:

House Bills:
·1383, 1483, 1510, 2465, 2575, 2583, 2685, 2778, 2871, 2879, 2987 and 3261.
·The Governor issued a partial veto on HB 2575, Section 6 and on HB 3261, Sections 1 and 3.

Senate Bills:
·5330, 6152, 6230, 6244, 6246, 6247, 6280, 6362, 6480, 6504, 6512, 6528, 6531, 6545, 6552, 6555, 6566, 6630, 6661, 6671, 6762, 6787, 6793, 6800, 6816, 6823, 6826, 6839 and 6874.
·The Governor issued a partial veto on SB 6555, Section 3.