June 28, 2007
Yes, No, Maybe So
A new poll on November's transportation ballot indicates the measure could go either way. It's an Elway poll, and as usual the internals aren't available which makes skepticism a very good choice, but it shows the public leaning toward the measure.
As one would expect and as other polling data has shown, support goes down when people hear the full household cost and those most likely to vote aren't thrilled with the package. That's pretty similar to the dynamics for I-912, whose outcome is instructive for this election.
Yes, there is a passionate core of opposition this year just as with the gas tax. Yet, the baseline appeal of a balanced roads-transit package to a majority of voters in the voting area for this election is real. If a similar campaign unfolds where the pro-transportation side targets its message community by community, highlighting the specific projects in the proposal that interest the individual voter - while the anti-tax side remains relatively disorganized - then the measure just might win.
That's a big if, but by all indications the specific campaign dynamics unfolding on the pro and con side of the issue look remarkably similar to the I-912 race. And that issue wasn't even close in the voting area making the decision this time around.
Posted by Eric Earling at June 28, 2007
08:07 AM | Email This
How did the voters react when they were told that in addition to this tax, there is the tri-county road package of megabillions that is sitting for next year?
Or that ST plans to expand into Mount Vernon, but at least all of rural Snohomish County.
If you want to see panic on a monumental scale start making PDRs from your local jurisdiction requesting an accounting of what it has cost your City to "lobby" ST to get what was promised each of the jurisdictions which comprize the ST area.
It is million$ of dollars. Each of the various jurisdictions was "promised" projects that were to be built in and services which were to be provided that would be of benefit to voters in those areas. This was an attempt to get the suckers to buy off on SoundMove.
The reason we see "subareas" is because the voters outside Seattle were skeptical, to say the least, that anything would be done that was not what Seattle wanted and Seattle wants light rail and couldn't give two hoots and a holler about what has to be done to get it.
ST is somewhat constrained by this subarea equity, however they have made attempts to "lend" money from the east and south subarea to impliment light rail in Seattle. Stopping this has also cost YOU millions because YOUR City's staff has had to be present at meetings gallore and has had to devote staff time (which should be spent working to improve your local jurisdiction) to fighting to get what was "promised" and to prevent YOUR money from being pissed down the light rail rat hole.
And let's not let them get tecnical, Stefan will have the original SoundMove documents and will be able to post what was presented to the public soon. This is what the public voted on, not bla bla 75, which was never widely circulated or even mentioned to the voters prior to the vote. In order to have been aware of it you would have had to have devoted your entire life to attending each and every meeting held prior to the vote and then probably have made endless PDR requests. They are in the mail on the way to him as I type, conspicuous is their absense from SDTs website and believe me this is by design. I had the foresight to recognize that there would come a day when these documents would come in handy and that when that day arrived that they would be hard to come by. 7 Years ago I PDF'd them for posterity's sake.
swatter - what are you talking about with another package for next year?
As to ST, I don't think the vote in question changes their boundary (essentially the I-5 and I-405 corridors from Everett south) much, if at all. Meanwhile and rural parts of the county won't even be voting on the roads part of the package either.
4. Meanwhile and rural parts of the county won't even be voting on the roads part of the package either.
Eric, can you provide more detail on this? I had heard that parts of Pierce county might do this because of a dispute over what was included in the roads package - has that been decided?
I'm in a rural area of King County unincorporated, and I still pay ST taxes, even though it's highly unlikely that their light rail will ever work for me.
I do a lot of work in King County lately and everyone asks "why don't you move here?"
My disdain for the commute is outweighed by the madness and taxes that govern King County.
6. And Kitsap is not included because they have polling data that tells them that people over there are so frosted over paying a toll for a bridge that they didn't want there is no way in hell they are going to vote yes on anything that costs them more.
Over the years, Eric, the Herald has been printing all sorts of pie-in-the-sky plans for ST, including having north to Arlington, at least, in their area to collect dough. There was talk of a ST bus route system to include the existing easterly boundary of ST, which doesn't make sense unless the boundaries are expanded to the total rural areas. There were even quotes from local mayors liking the idea in concept. The tribes,of course, would like ST all the way to Vancouver to help their business ventures (sin money).
And frankly, I think Snohomish County and Pierce County aren't dense enough to be called "urban" yet, but hey, ST and the State call it "urban" enough for mass transit, so who am I to say.
The Herald today talked about part of the tri-County proposal being added to this year's vote instead of waiting.
Now, while evergreen rails might have been correct in calling me an idiot over the past few days, this transportation situation is confusing, to say the least.
And when something the government does is confusing, I run away from it with my battery powered Nikes. Like in the gooey detail of the immigration package.
I believe that all laws are good intentioned, but when and after they get passed, good intentions go out the window when attorneys get involved.
8. Here's a tip, of the documents that will be forthcomming is a breakout listing park and rides, transit direct access ramps and Express Buss Service that was promised to the "outlying population" to sucker them into voting for SM. Ask YOUR local elected representatives why the services you were promised were either scrapped of severely truncated and why they have not demanded a public explanation then watch them start to squirm. Without local politicians support they know they are doomed. This will be fun to sit by and watch the cat fight that these questions are sure to set off. Many local politicians will be on the same ballot this fall and they will go on the offensive oif they think it's their hind end on the line.
9. The big question is whether it will be defined in terms of the cost or the projects. Given that the money advantage is likely to favor the pro side and given the incredible campaign skills on the pro side that seems likely. 912 was a great example of that. The same interests and the same people are going to be behind this package. Unless Kemper Freeman really throws in tons of money and that money is well spent (unlikely given thier track record), this thing is looking in the bag.
Who paid for the poll and what were the actual questions?
With polls like this, what the questions actually say is far more important than what the percentages of "agree" vs. "disagree" are.
There wasn't public money used to pay for this, was there? Renton Valley Hospital just got dinged by the PDC for doing that.
11. Orting, Not sure on this poll, but if it was paid for by public funds it would probably be ok. Until something is actually on the ballot governments have a good deal of latitude on such things and there is nothing wrong with government polling to see what people think. This package won't be on the ballot until the exec signs it...
Gee, I wonder what the reaction of the supporters will be once the realize how badly they were screwed... because government has lied to them again about what these taxes will actually buy.
You know, like the 31% whack on promised projects AFTER the gas tax vote?
The problem for those remotely considering voting for this garbage is you really have no idea what you're going to get.
The only thing you have is a list of what they SAY you're going to get. But hey, didn't we have that with the gas tax?
I, for one, will be eternally grateful to all those rabid supporters of the gas tax we're going to get screwed on for the nex 29 years or so. I hope they're thrilled... especially since the project list will continue to shrink due to "unforeseen" cost increases.
Odd, isn't it? That the viaduct hasn't seemed to have fallen down by now? I was sure that it would have been a pile of rubble long ago based on what the pro-taxers were telling us.
"if it was paid for by public funds it would probably be ok."
Sure it might be legal. But if the sponsors of the measure are paying for the poll, then the questions asked would be designed by Elway to generate favorable responses.
It is all about what the questions really were, and how they are asked. Especially when nobody knows what is actually being promised by RTID and ST.
Looks like the cargo cult keeps on praying...
Still, some cities are adopting the flex-taxi idea I proposed in 1993 to Metro:
"A story in the new Plenty magazine gives details on a cab company that's giving the late-night clubbing crowd of Liverpool great green service with the magic of text messages..."
15. That is one of the problems, Concerned. I am voting for county council and city council based upon his/her work on that body, not the ST board where they are "selected" to be on.
"support goes down when people hear the full household cost"
So let's mention that FULL COST once again..
$18,333 per man woman and child (maybe even dog, if they vote)
How big is your family
If you are a yes vote why not write out the check and deposit it in the ballot box so even if loses they will have enough boondoggle cash to celebrate with a 300k party if they ever stop studying and actually get around to building anything.
How in God's haven name can anyone take these clowns from ST and the government seriously when it comes to any transportation taxes. They simply don't pass the straight face test. Are we crazy or what/
Folks you were conned by the queen during the last transportation gas tax increase. Vote for it for the viaduct about to fall and the bridge. Give me a break. People voted for it and like suckers they don't have a clue why the things are not being built.
Now roads which we need are being lumped together with "mass" transit which we don't need. And we are expected to pay the piper for this boondoggle which will result in less roads and more trains and buses. Wonderful. Are you people nuts or what. Look at their track record and ask yourselves if you would trust them with anything? They are nothing more then corrupt politicians.
Care to talk about their relationships with the special interest groups that wash their backs. Maybe the unions or perhaps the sanctuaries for illegal aliens. I say it is time to stop this expensive madness. Vote NO for any new taxes. Transportation or otherwise. Wait for new management at the top.