The 2023 WA state legislative session is rapidly approaching and Governor Inslee's transportation budget is critical for making progress on Lower Snake River (LSR) dam service replacements.
Solutionary Rail has worked extensively to define next steps for resilient, robust, and competitive rail service for LSR wheat.SolutionaryRail.org/lsrbarge2rail has a very useful map, a 1-sheet summary relating our findings, and another 1-sheet on steps Governor Inslee and the WA state legislature can take in the 2023 legislative session.
An OpEd in the Spokesman-Review's Oct 29 edition is HERE: Can Trains Save Salmon? by Bill Moyer
The 2022 Murray/Inslee Report proposed a $10 million Washington State Dept of Transportation (WSDOT) transportation study. But transportation budgets are specific, and studies are generally around $250-500k. Even if the scope of the proposed study is better defined, but then presented to the WA state legislature as a $10 million dam breaching study, it will either fail or it will result in counterproductive outcomes on a catastrophic 10-year timeline. (Yes - 10 years is the timeline being discussed by Gov. Inslee.)
We need to take actions on a timeline that reflect the urgency of an imminent extinction event - not party politics or business as usual bureaucracies. The scope of any LSR service replacement analysis needs:
- to be precisely targeted
- to be on a 12-18 month maximum timeline, and
- to provide the prerequisites for Federal funding such as "BCAs" (benefit cost analysis).
Take Action Today: Contact Governor Inslee
Message: Integrate the Solutionary Rail list of projects and benefit cost analyses as line items for the 2023-2025 Transportation Budget. See SolutionaryRail.org/lsrbarge2rail
The Governor's budget is due to the Legislature in December 2022, so we have no time to waste.