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TCC Statement on Seattle Times' Opinion Column

Posted by Carla Chavez at Sep 25, 2017 07:55 PM |

The recent opinion piece Who’s really in the driver’s seat on Puget Sound transit spending? by Seattle Times columnist Brier Dudley focused on Transportation Choices Coalition (TCC) and our influence on transportation spending. The column contained multiple inaccuracies and false allegations about TCC, our current and former staff and Board members. TCC cooperated fully with Mr. Dudley and we repeatedly attempted to correct his misrepresentation of our lobbying filings, as well as clarify PDC and IRS rules for him.

We would like to set the record straight.

We are a small nonprofit working hard to increase and improve sustainable and more equitable transit, biking and walking options in Washington State.  Our organization, which is staffed by a majority of women who are smart and dedicated professionals, works every day to make a difference in our community. We are known for our detailed and thoughtful policy work as well as grassroots education and outreach. Together with our broad coalition of business, labor, environmental, transportation, and social justice organizations, we are focused on expanding transportation options so that people can get where they want to go. We are very proud of the alumni of former staff and board members who have chosen to continue to serve the public by running for elected office or serving in civic jobs.

Our participation in issue-based lobbying is legal and appropriate. We report lobbying expenditures and ballot measure contributions to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the State Public Disclosure Commission (PDC.) We are independently audited and consistently receive a clean opinion. We disclose our contributors on our website. Like many other non-profits, our policy and education programs are in service to the public to improve transportation options. We have received national and local acclaim for our work because we believe that community involvement does make a difference in expanding multi-modal transportation options.

Voters in the Puget Sound region and others places in the state have repeatedly approved funding for transit for our future. The Seattle Times editorial board has been on the record opposing multiple transit expansions including Sound Transit 2, Move King County Now, Move Seattle, and the Sound Transit 3 measures.

The work and success of TCC and its coalition partners is a testament to the fact that we reflect the region’s vision of creating thriving and equitable communities connected by great transportation options. We will vigorously defend the voter’s mandates and our region against these anti-transit attacks and assaults on our non-profit’s reputation. Instead we will continue to focus on bringing Washingtonians more opportunities to take a bus, catch a train, walk and bike. Our work is to define a future for Washington that offers real transportation choices to connect people with jobs, housing, communities, and each other.

For more information, please contact Shefali Ranganathan, Executive Director, Transportation Choices Coalition,shefali@transportationchoices.org, 206-329-2336.

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