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Federal Way Urges Lawmakers: Pressure Sound Transit

Bryan Buckalew

Federal Way is upset Sound Transit is delaying plans to bring light rail to their city. Now the mayor is urging state lawmakers to pressure the agency with legislation. KUOW's Bryan Buckalew reports.


Mayor Skip Priest acknowledges the six bills he's pushing might not go anywhere this session. Still, he says he wants to send a message to Sound Transit: Figure out how to do more with less.

Priest: "Yeah, welcome to the club. We have household after household after household in my community that day after day is looking how to do more with less. So we're asking for Sound Transit to look for ways that they can meet the results as opposed to merely saying, 'Sorry, you're getting less money. So you get less.'"

Reason: "That's simply not true."

Kimberly Reason is a spokesperson for Sound Transit. She says the agency is looking for ways to get light rail as far south as possible by 2023. But Reason says South King County collected 31 percent less tax revenue than Sound Transit expected. That means a delay. Reason says light rail will arrive in the Kent/Des Moines area by 2023. Sound Transit doesn't have a date for when light rail will extend south of that.

Last week, the State Auditor announced plans to look into whether Sound Transit adequately prepared for a downturn in revenues. Reason says Sound Transit stands by their revenue forecasts and that they're regularly vetted by outside auditors.

For KUOW News, I'm Bryan Buckalew.

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