People are invited to make comments during a public hearing at the Dec. 19 council meeting
TIGARD - The time has finally arrived for the public to have its official say on a proposal for a temporary gas tax within the city limits.
The City Council will hold a public hearing on the issue at its meeting Tuesday, Dec. 19, that begins at 7:30 p.m. in City Hall.
The Transportation Strategies Financing Task Force came up with the plan to fund improvements to the Pacific Highway/Greenburg Road/Main Street intersection that are estimated to cost between $3.5 million and $4 million.
As proposed, there would be a 3-cents per gallon local fuel tax that would sunset in five years. If the state or Washington County increases their gas tax rates, the city would reduce its rate by the same proportion.
The county currently has a MSTIP-3 project in the design phase to improve the Pacific Highway/Hall Boulevard intersection.
Similar improvements to the Pacific Highway/Greenburg/Main intersection 'would compliment the Hall/99W improvements and significantly improve traffic circulation across and through Highway 99W from Main Street to the Highway 217 interchange,' said City Engineer Gus Duenas.
He told the council Dec. 12 that comments on the gas tax at two November open houses covered a wide range of sentiments.
'In general, people were in favor of it, but there were some objections, including comments that the tax should be statewide,' Duenas said. 'One citizen said that the plan was short-sighted and should be extended to 20 years. I didn't hear anything really negative. The plan has changed from the way it was originally proposed based on comments we received.'
Council President Nick Wilson noted, 'I was surprised at how non-controversial it was.'
Following public testimony at next Tuesday's meeting, the council will consider adopting an ordinance to establish the fuel tax.