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Archive for 'Councilmember O’Brien'

Transit Savings – How Employees and Employers Could Save Money

For many Seattle families, public transit costs are a major household expense. National data shows that transportation costs are the second highest household cost after housing, affecting cost-burdened households in Seattle.  But few people know they can set aside money for transit expenses through a pre-tax payroll deduction. That money can be used to commute […]

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Johnson, Herbold & O’Brien Lay Out Path Forward on Tree Protection Legislation

Commit to protecting exceptional trees, maintaining Seattle’s reputation as a ‘truly Emerald City’ Seattle, WA – Members of the Council’s Planning, Land Use and Zoning (PLUZ) Committee issued the following statement specific to the City’s forthcoming tree ordinance earlier today: “The benefits of tree canopies are numerous: a cleaner, more resilient environment, and a more […]

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How the Sweetened Beverage Tax Allows Families to Stretch their Food Dollars Further

When I think of the sweetened beverage tax, I picture the face of Nora Jenkins. Jenkins shops at the Columbia City Farmers’ Market every Wednesday and picks up her favorite vegetable – collard greens. She receives SNAP assistance (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program), but through a program called Fresh Bucks, she’s able to double the amount […]

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Safety and Costs of Bike Lanes

Last week the city council passed Resolution #31826 committing the city to completing certain pieces of the downtown bike network in the next 18 months. I expect the City’s Department of Transportation to do their best work in identifying cost efficiencies as they finalize designs for these projects so that we can get the safety […]

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Creating a Connected, Protected Bicycle Lane Network in Downtown

Riding a bike is proven to keep communities healthy, and to reduce climate pollution, and approximately 60% of Seattleites want to bike more than they do now.  But today we heard loud and clear that the lack of safe, connected routes is cited as the number one reason why they don’t. In recent years there […]

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O’Brien Highlights Community Support For ‘Complete Streets’ Bike Network

Councilmember Mike O’Brien (District 6, Northwest Seattle), Chair of the Council’s Sustainability and Transportation Committee, introduced Resolution #31826, which memorializes the Seattle Center City Bike Network and establishes an 18-month implementation schedule for creating a connected, protected bicycle lane network in downtown Seattle by 2020. The resolution was introduced to the Committee during a special hearing on Wednesday, […]

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Expanding LEAD to North Seattle

Less than seven years ago, the Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion program, or LEAD, was little more than a local experiment aimed at breaking the cycle of arrest and incarceration. Initially launched with private foundation funds, the $950,000-a-year, four-year pilot program offered carefully chosen participants individualized alternatives to arrest. Today, LEAD is one of the City’s […]

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Changes to the Seattle Transportation Benefit District, and what it means for your commute

On Monday, the Seattle City Council voted on  legislation that expands the uses of the voter-approved Seattle Transportation Benefit District (STBD), which has generated approximately $50 million each year to meet demand for transit since 2015. You may remember voting for Proposition 1, creating the STBD, in 2014. We invested big time in public transportation, and […]

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My Vote on the Employee Hours Tax

Earlier today, I voted to repeal the proposed employee hours tax on Seattle’s top-grossing 3 percent of businesses. While the need hasn’t changed in the months since we started this conversation, it’s clear that we need to come together for the common good of our city. My vote is not something I take lightly. I […]

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A More Transparent, Efficient, and Equitable Street Vacation Policy

This week, I am proud to share that we passed updated street and alley vacation polices, as well as a resolution defining and recognizing the value of Equitable Development Agreements (EDAs). Street vacations allow property owners to petition City Council for private use of the public right of way. These decisions permanently change the right-of-way […]

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