Regional Public Journalism
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
Dispatches from public radio's correspondent at the Washington Legislature. Austin Jenkins is the Olympia correspondent for the Northwest News Network. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) weekly public affairs program "Inside Olympia."

Inslee Says 520 Bridge Pontoon Cracks Shouldn't Derail Funding Package

Washington Dept. of Transportation

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Washington Governor Jay Inslee says he’s “grossly disappointed” by mistakes that led to cracks in the pontoons for the new 520 bridge over Seattle’s Lake Washington. But the Democrat says those problems should not derail his plans for a transportation funding package this year.

“The biggest impact of these cracks, ‘cause we’re going to fix them, could be cracks in our confidence to be able to move forward and keep our state’s economy growing," Inslee says. "I’m committed to job creation in this state and fundamental to job creation is moving forward on transportation.”

Inslee spoke at a news conference in Olympia Wednesday.

House Democrats have proposed a 10-cent gas tax increase and other fees to fund a $10 billion roads package. However, Republicans have adopted a “fix it before you fund it” approach. They say they want reforms at the Washington Department of Transportation before they’ll support more money for roads.

On the Web:

520 Bridge Replacement Project - Washington Department of Transportation

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy, as well as the Washington State Legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia."