Seattle may put $80 car tab hike fee to public vote

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by LINDA BRILL / KING 5 News

KING5.com

Posted on July 18, 2011 at 5:18 PM

Updated Monday, Jul 18 at 5:37 PM

SEATTLE – Car owners in Seattle could be asked to pay another $80 for car tabs in addition to a proposed $20 car tab increase from King County.

The city cannot raise rates without a vote, so city leaders are starting to make their case.

"Well, I’d have to get rid of the cars. One of them at least,” said one driver.

"Since they just raised rates to park on the street to four dollars an hour downtown, I think it’s too much, too soon,” said another.

The city would raise about $25 million per year to fix streets, improve bus lanes, bike lanes and sidewalks and fix potholes.

"I know that people are frustrated by potholes and condition of our streets. People want traffic lights. The reality is, with the recession, we're not able to keep up with those demands,” said Seattle City Councilman Tom Rasmussen.

To help Metro Transit avoid severe service cuts, King County is also considering asking voters for a $20 car tab increase.

The fee increase may go to voters in November. City leaders say their polling shows people are willing to pay more to get the streets fixed.

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