Senate panel to hold hearing on $12.3 billion transportation plan

Washington residents on Thursday can weigh in on the merits of a $12.3 billion transportation package drawn up by the Republican-controlled majority in the state Senate.

The proposal, which calls for hiking the gas tax by 11.5 cents during the next three years, aims to generate enough funds to complete major projects the Highway 520 floating bridge. It also seeks to make several reforms in transportation policy.

The Senate Transportation Commission has scheduled the work session at 1:30 p.m. Thursday in Olympia. Senators intend to take comment on each of the 10 bills in the package.

You can find drafts of the bills here.

Earlier this year, House Democrats approved a $10 billion plan for the state’s transportation system anchored by an increase in the gas tax of a dime.

House and Senate transportation leaders are now trying to iron out their differences. They will hold another round of negotiations Tuesday.

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