(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) announced that she has included over $7 million for Snohomish County transportation and housing projects in the Fiscal Year 2009 Senate Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development (THUD) Appropriations bill. As Chairman of the THUD Appropriations Subcommittee, Senator Murray uses her position to invest in community-backed Washington state projects that may not otherwise receive federal support.
"Like so many regions in our state, Snohomish County has real transportation and housing needs that must be addressed," said Senator Murray. "This bill makes targeted investments in projects that will make Snohomish County safer, bolster mass-transit, and improve quality of life. With gas prices at record-highs, local governments strapped for cash, and economic growth being threatened, communities need a boost from the federal government. I'm proud to work to return Snohomish County families' federal tax dollars to projects in their own backyard."
The THUD Appropriations bill was approved in Senator Murray's THUD Committee on Tuesday and is expected to be approved by the full Appropriations Committee today. It will then move to the Senate floor.
The following projects were included in the bill in the Snohomish County region:
Granite Falls Alternate Route, Snohomish County: $2,500,000
The Granite Falls Alternate Route project will divert haul trucks and trailers from downtown Granite Falls to a corridor outside the city. In addition to increasing the mobility and safety of residents and businesses, this alternate route will reduce travel time and barriers for freight movement, and support economic growth throughout the region.
“The completion of this project will be a strong example of how local, state and federal partnerships can provide a safer route that also improves the quality of life and economic growth in the region," said Snohomish County Executive Aaron Reardon. "I thank Senator Murray for her continued commitment to the Granite Falls Alternative Route and enabling this project to be competed.”
U.S. 2 Safety Improvements, Snohomish County: $2,000,000
These improvements will reduce fatal and injury accidents and increase traveler and pedestrian safety. The project will also reduce congestion-related collisions within Monroe & Sultan by enhancing signal operations systems. US 2 carries over 6 million tons of goods annually and is a major recreational route to Stevens Pass and Eastern Washington. Project improvements along the corridor will help keep those goods moving with minimal delay to both the Puget Sound region and Eastern Washington.
Everett Transit Vehicle Replacement, City of Everett: $1,000,000
This funding will help Everett Transit to acquire two new, ultra-clean hybrid diesel-electric, low floor, and ADA compliant coaches to replace older diesel-powered coaches that will have operated over 500,000 miles each. These replacement transit coaches will assist with reducing emissions and improve in-service fuel economy thus improving the air quality in the Puget Sound region.
“We are taking steps to promote a greener environment with the purchase of hybrid diesel-electric Everett Transit buses,” Everett Mayor Ray Stephanson said. “By embracing this request to replace older diesel buses with ultra-clean hybrids, we can reduce the amount of pollutants discharged and continue to provide excellent transit service to our customers.”
YWCA Snohomish County Regional Housing Network Expansion: $400,000
These funds will be used to upgrade the 3 housing expansion projects currently under way to promote housing stability and family self-sufficiency for homeless and at-risk low-income working families. These improvements will increase the YWCA’s capacity to deliver effective on-side services those living in this YWCA housing community and the surrounding neighborhoods.
“Closing the gap between wages and the cost of housing is essential to preserve our region’s economic competitiveness and quality of life," Sue Sherbrooke, CEO, YWCA Seattle-King County-Snohomish County. "Our project makes the gap smaller in Snohomish County by preserving affordable family housing and increasing access to the tools families need to increase their economic well being.”