Transportation infrastructure is one of the City's most valuable investments.State and Federal funding for maintenance and preservation of the City’s streets has been reduced in recent years. While these revenues have decreased, costs continue to rise, making it difficult for the City to adequately preserve and maintain streets and sidewalks.
In response to a need for street maintenance funding, the Tumwater City Council created a Transportation Benefit District, a quasi-municipal taxing jurisdiction, in September 2014. Chapter 36.73 RCW provides for the establishment of transportation benefit districts for the purpose of levying additional revenue sources for funding transportation improvements.
Ordinance and Memo establishing the Transportation Benefit District from 9/16/2014 Council Meeting
Tumwater Transportation Benefit District
When the Transportation Benefit District was originally established in September 2014, State law required that the City create a separate governing board, called the Tumwater Transportation Benefit District Board to oversee activities, expenditures and revenues. In 2015, the law was changed to allow the City Council to assume governance of these funds and activities, creating more efficiency. The Tumwater City Council assumed this responsibility in November 2015, and all Tumwater Transportation Benefit District business is conducted at regular City Council meetings.
City Council Governance of the TBD
The 2015 Legislature included within its transportation funding bill, 2ESSB 5987, Chapter 44, Laws of 2015, 3rd Special Session, a number of changes to the laws governing transportation benefits districts (TBDs). Section 301 of 2ESSB 5987 provides that a city, in which a transportation benefit district has been established pursuant to RCW 36.73 and with boundaries coterminous with the boundaries of the City, may by ordinance or resolution assume the rights, powers, functions and obligations of the transportation benefit district.
The Tumwater City Council passed Ordinance No. O2015-013, Assumption of the TBD by the City Council on November 2, 2015. This action abolished the Board of the TBD and provided for more efficient governance of the TBD by the Tumwater City Council.
Proposition 1: Street and Sidewalk Maintenance Ballot Measure
The TBD Board passed Resolution R2015-002 to place a ballot proposition before the citizens of district (City of Tumwater) on April 28, 2015, to impose a sales tax in the amount of two-tenths of one percent (0.2%) for a period of ten years to fund or finance specified transportation projects. This action was taken at the TBD Board meeting on January 20, 2015.
Tumwater voters approved a sales tax increase of 0.2% (two-tenths of one percent) for a period of ten years to fund street maintenance projects in the City limits. Revenues collected from this additional sales tax levy are held in separate accounts and used only for authorized street maintenance projects.
Future projects will include additional focus on preservation. The City anticipates completing over $12,000,000 worth of road repair projects over the next 8 years.
Promises Made - Promises Kept
Each year the City provides citizens of Tumwater with transportation improvement costs, expenditures, revenues, and construction schedules in the TBD annual report.