Not to be outdone by Clackamas County commissioners, Clark County leaders put forward their own nearly identical anti-Columbia River Crossing resolution today.
Sponsored by newly-elected Commissioner David Madore—who made his opposition to the $3.5 billion highway, Interstate 5 bridge and light rail project nearly his sole campaign issue—it's set for a vote on Tuesday.
The resolution has likely got the votes to pass: Commissioner Tom Mielke has long said he dislikes the project. The lone Democrat on the three-man board, Steve Stuart, supports the project.
It's not clear how much the resolution will do, as the county has no legal authority over the project. But it will add to the growing cacophony from Southwest Washington—including a letter to the Coast Guard from state legislators asking for more bridge height and a request from the federal representatives asking for an economic analysis—that shows the embattled project has an uphill fight in the region.
Here's the text of the resolution, as posted by Stuart to his Facebook page:
RESOLUTION TO OPPOSE THE
COLUMBIA RIVER CROSSING (CRC)
LIGHT RAIL TOLLING PROJECT
WHEREAS, the nearly $10 Billion long-term cost of the CRC will result in significant losses of state and federal funding opportunities for the transportation infrastructure needs of our region; and
WHEREAS, new fees and taxes will likely be required and imposed upon our citizenry without the opportunity for voter approval; and
WHEREAS, there is abundant evidence of widespread and overwhelming public opposition including the recent general election where the majority of voters defeated a measure to fund light rail; and
WHEREAS, more appropriate transportation priorities can provide more effective solutions to relieve traffic congestion, save significant cost and potentially gain better public support; and
WHEREAS, we (as elected officials) are obligated to speak up for our citizenry and to protect vital future funding sources; and
WHEREAS, it is important for elected officials to stand up and be counted on what may be the largest transportation project in state history,
NOW, THEREFORE, THE CLARK COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS RESOLVES AS FOLLOWS:
The Clark County Commission hereby directs the County Administrator to notify all of those concerned with the CRC, including ODOT, WDOT, TriMet, RTC, C-Tran, Metro, the City of Portland, the City of Vancouver, the Washington and Oregon Governors’ offices, both State Legislatures, the Federal Transit Administration, the Federal Highway Administration and Congressional delegates that:
The Clark County Commission strongly objects to the efforts to commit any funding to the Columbia River Crossing Light Rail Tolling project as currently planned;
That Clark County urges all other Oregon and Washington cities and counties to stand up and be counted on this very important matter.
INTRODUCED AND ADOPTED this 12th day of February, 2013.
David Madore, Clark County Commissioner Tom Mielke, Clark County Commissioner