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Published on Friday, January 31, 2014

Cities tell the story of the Public Works Trust Fund

City officials from across the state testified in favor of HB 2244 and HJR 4215 in the House Capital Budget Committee on January 30. HB 2244 is sponsored by Rep. Derek Stanford (D-Bothell), vice chair of the Capital Budget Committee, and would restore revenues diverted from the Public Works Assistance Account at the end of this biennium. Rep. Judy Warnick (R-Moses Lake) sponsored a constitutional amendment that would restrict the use of these revenues to local government infrastructure assistance. In her remarks before the Committee, Rep. Warnick explained that she had voted for the budget that swept the Public Works Assistance Account, but when she went back home she heard loud and clear from her cities and local businesses just how damaging the sweep had been to local communities.

City officials testified and told the story of how losing these funds had dramatically increased the cost of projects, delayed projects, or put federal funds in jeopardy due to the loss of matching funds. Additionally cities discussed how past projects had allowed for economic development and created jobs in their communities.

Thanks to all of the city officials who testified:

  • Mayor Bob Goedde, Chelan
  • Mayor Jim Haggerton, Tukwila
  • Mayor Amy Walen, Kirkland
  • Randy Lewis, City Administrator, Westport
  • Dave Scott, City Administrator, Washougal
  • Pete Capell, City Administrator, Camas
  • Matt Welborn, Utilities Finance Manager, Everett
  • Lloyd Halverson, former Camas City Administrator

In addition to city officials, the Committee heard from many other groups that are part of our Infrastructure Funding Coalition including the Associated General Contractors, the Public Utility Districts, the Water/Sewer Districts, the Puget Sound Partnership, and the Building Trades.

The Senate companion to this bill will be introduced soon so please continue to tell your legislators the story of how important the PWTF is to your community.