By Nate Nehring
Every two years, the state Legislature adopts a biennial budget. This year they approved the 2019-2021 operating, capital and transportation budgets. Snohomish County and its partners lobbied the state to make investments in our county, and we were successful on multiple fronts. Here are some of the significant wins for county residents. RAP Program
The Regional Apprenticeship Pathways Program is a collaborative effort between the local school districts, Everett Community College, labor groups, industry and local government to prepare more students for careers in the construction and building trades. We received $1.5 million in ongoing funding for the first two years. Capital requests
Snohomish County requested funding for multiple projects in the state’s capital budget, which funds local construction projects. The adopted budget includes funding for the Sheriff’s South Precinct and Evergreen Speedway. The South Precinct is in desperate need of replacement. Snohomish County has committed $2 million to this project and the capital budget included $1 million to help us. The Evergreen Speedway, at the Evergreen State Fairgrounds in Monroe, is looking to expand its NASCAR appeal. We requested state capital dollars to help with improvements and expansion of the speedway. The capital budget included $150,000 for the project.
Other local projects
In all, Snohomish County received $12.6 million in local and community projects from the adopted capital budget. Close to $1.2 million of that is in North Snohomish County including:
•$530,000 to the Arlington Boys and Girls Club for parking and safety improvements
•$412,000 to Granite Falls for police department renovation
•$300,000 for the Highway 530 “Oso” Slide Memorial Project
While the legislature did not pass a much-anticipated transportation package, they did pass a budget that builds on some of the past transportation investments. In total, Snohomish County will see almost $1.8 billion in new transportation investments over the next 10 years. Some projects affecting North Snohomish County residents include:
•$215 million to the Highway 9 corridor
•$30 million to I-5 interchanges at 116th and 88th •$1.6 million to study congestion improvements on the US 2 trestle
We are grateful to our partners in the legislature for their continued investments in Snohomish County. We thank them for making our communities a priority in Olympia.
Nate Nehring is a member of the Snohomish County Council and represents District 1, which includes Arlington and Marysville, among others. His column runs monthly.