Washington Governor Jay Inslee urged a group of regional business leaders today to urge state legislators to support the Columbia River Crossing --the proposed new I-5 bridge over between Portland and Vancouver.
Now that the Oregon House has come up with a $450,000,000 package of local funding, Inslee says Washington will lose jobs if the legislature doesn't produce a similar sum, to qualify for federal bridge funding.
Jay Inslee "And I'll tell you what: I do not want to be standing here in ten years without progress on this bridge, with our money that we sent in taxes to Washington DC going to Alabama or going to California."
Inslee said negotiations continue with river users whose business will suffer if the bridge is built at its projected height. Inslee wouldn't say how much mitigation cash has been discussed.
State Senator Don Benton, a vocal critic of the bridge project, said after the Governor's press conference he doubts Inslee will get what he wants. He noted the Washington Senate Transportation committee is co-chaired by a Republican lawmaker with deep concerns about the project.