Public transit is a pathway to opportunity—social, economic, and educational. From bus to light rail, street car to rapid ride, transit connects communities to the places they want to go, giving everyone a way to get around.
I’ve spent much of my career working to build a city, county, region, and state that is better connected than ever before. And, while Metro is one of King County’s greatest assets, that doesn’t mean we can’t be doing more to make it accessible, affordable, and available to all in our area. And we don’t need to wait. There are immediate and long term actions the King County Council should be taking to improve bus service, as well as expedite the expansion of light rail, to better meet the current and future needs of King County.
How do I know? Because I live it every day. I made a choice a few years ago to not own a car and rely on transit as my primary means of transportation, so I understand what it’s like to be a frequent transit rider (the great and the not so great). I’ve also spent time at Transportation Choices Coalition, learning the ins-and-outs of transit policy. I know both where our service needs to improve it and how to improve it.
King County Council District 4 is the only King County Council district that is entirely in the City of Seattle. It is very transit dependent and deserves a representative who doesn’t just support transit but champions the issue.
Here is my plan for creating a better transit system in King County:
Sustainable County Funding for Greater Local Transit:
- Replace the Seattle Transportation Benefit District with countywide investments to eliminate the two tiered transit system — even more important as working people, young families and seniors are priced out of Seattle housing.
- Pursue progressive revenue sources for funding transit, moving away from regressive measures and farebox recovery, and work with the legislature to expand potential options.
- Expand transit service: Increase Rapid Ride frequency and route options during commute hours, improve service for local routes that connect our neighborhoods, and develop transit solutions that make it easier to travel east-west in North Seattle.
- Prioritize equity when designing new routes and determining service hours.
Break Down Barriers – Make Transit Easier to Afford and More Reliable to Ride:
- Put affordable or free transit passes in the hands of people across Seattle and King County.
- Create a Transit Ambassador program to help Metro customers, county visitors, and all those in need get the transit support they need.
- Ensure the paratransit system is reliable, safe, and accessible — our community members with disabilities deserve easy access to transit.
- Improve wayfinding around transit stations, and work to develop a more seamless integration between transit systems — especially as light rail expands and Metro’s service adapts around it.
Reform Fare Enforcement and Modernize Metro’s Performance Metrics:
- Stop the current intimidating and humiliating practice of fare enforcement. Fare enforcement should be (and dress) more like Mr. Rogers and less like the paramilitary. They should be eager to welcome people to the bus and show them how to ride properly.
- Find alternative transit funding sources, rather than relying on diminishing rates of farebox recovery.
- Develop and implement effective performance metrics that value ridership, equity, and financial responsibility.
Expedite Sound Transit Link Light Rail:
- Streamline permitting processes so that no delay is created because of disagreements over land use and acquisition.
- Develop consensus among the community, stakeholders, and elected leaders and select one alternative for the West Seattle and Ballard expansions by the end of 2020, along with a realistic financial plan.
- Confirm federal investment and seek additional sources of funding to meet required needs.
- Use “Design-Build” contracts to bring down costs and speed up development timelines.
- Support workforce development and apprenticeship programs to ensure a strong, local workforce ready to build Sound Transit 3 projects.
Match Housing Needs with Transit Needs:
- Build affordable housing now, oriented around transit hubs to create connected communities.
- Ensure communities around transit are affordable, are not at risk of displacement, and are thriving, with walkable, bikeable neighborhoods and hyper-local economic opportunity.
Connecting to Transit: Our Communities, Schools, and Employment Centers
- Work with local jurisdictions to develop solutions to create safe and reliable connections to transit, from sidewalks to bike paths.
- Work with Metro and Sound Transit to develop better operational and maintenance systems to ensure the elevators and escalators at stations function properly and that stations are accessible for people of all ages and abilities at all times.
- Advocate and partner to ensure stronger and more reliable enforcement of transit only lanes.
- Create integrated bus hubs with improved design and signage that allow for clear and easy transfers between other routes, light rail, and bike lanes.
- Increase bike storage options at hubs, so no one is delayed because the bus they take has a full bike rack.
- Improve roads and bridges to be safer for all vehicles and modes, work with cities and in unincorporated areas to improve roadway efficiency, and better leverage state resources available for local investments to address urgent priorities.
I see transit as a resource for our region’s economic mobility, for access to opportunity, and an important and effective tool as a region for us to lead on climate change. We have an obligation to make it the best it can be, and the current council is not meeting those goals.
Check out my full plan:
Sustainable County Funding for Greater Local Transit
We must have a real conversation about how to equitably fund transit and ensure that we are growing transit not just in Seattle but across the region. Our transit agencies need financial resources to run, but the tools that the state legislature have offered us to collect revenue rely largely on taxing low income and working people.
I led the campaign for Seattle’s Transportation Benefit District and was proud to see it win in 2014. I attended countless community meetings and made it clear that it was a stop gap solution for revenue but an important step for transit growth. I’m very proud of what the investments in STBD have resulted in—neighborhoods in the City of Seattle within a 10 minute walk of frequent transit increased from 25% of the city to nearly 70%.
While the improvements to Seattle’s transit have been transformative, it does mean that when you leave Seattle, the transit service is not as frequent or reliable, creating a two-tiered transit system. As the cost of living rises in Seattle, more people have been pushed to the suburbs and are forced into car dependency, driving hours on the freeway, creating more congestion, pollution, and strain on working families.
The levy expires next year, and I am dismayed that the County Council has only this year began looking at funding options to replace the measure region-wide. A countywide measure is a critical piece to tackling the affordability crisis and climate change.
This has left only a small window—one legislative session—to have a dialogue with our state representatives and senators to explore a more progressive funding authority. Again, we need leadership engaged with the issues at hand. The transportation benefit district affects all Seattleites whether you take transit or not, and waiting until the last minute to replace it is a recipe for failure.
Metro Connects—King County’s long-term effort to build a fully comprehensive bus system—will require significant additional funding, an additional 75% by 2040. The County has identified a number of new and existing revenue sources to fund this initiative, but too few options represent progressive mechanisms that ensure working and low-income people are not overburdened.
In the immediate, I think the County should look into replacing its use of the sales tax (which is currently collected at .9%, the maximum rate allowable by the state) and institute a Business and Operations tax on our large employers—which the County has the authority to do without voter approval. Many large employers already provide their workers free transit passes and in exchange for the Business and Operations tax I’d propose providing all workers free transit passes.
This would create a more progressive, equitable, and stable source of revenue to fund transit, while encouraging more people to bus to work, taking cars off the road and carbon emissions out of the air.
While this is one idea, new options for transit revenue could also include: payroll tax (which is how Portland and New York help fund transit), allowing local jurisdictions to access the Motor Vehicle Excise Tax, a hybrid of the business and occupation tax and sales tax, real estate excise tax, other transportation related local option taxes, and developer impact fees. Many of these would require the legislature to make changes, but now is the moment to have these conversations and develop necessary innovative tax solutions.
Seattle and Washington state have consistently written budgets that prioritize cars over alternative means of transportation. In King County, we have an opportunity to rectify this, by valuing transit as an incredible public benefit for everyone in our communities whether you use the system or not.
Our budgets should reflect our values. Investments in transit benefit everyone by helping us have cleaner air, cleaner water, fewer cars on the road, and, of course, additional choices to get out of traffic.
This is the leadership we need to ensure we aren’t just maintaining existing service levels but investing in expanding transit service investments. It is critical that we are working to fully fund and build out Metro Connects, which details a roadmap for improving our existing Rapid Ride service, adding additional Rapid Ride routes for east-west connection, more local service that connects our neighborhoods during non-commuter hours, reliable transit connections to our planned light rail system, and so much more.
As light rail expands and Northgate Link opens in 2020, it will require an engaged County Council to ensure that the bus restructure plan balances both seamless connections and optimizing routes to free up service to neighborhoods that do not have as frequent and reliable transit service.
Access to reliable transportation is often an insurmountable barrier preventing people from moving up the economic ladder. High quality and available transit is an important poverty reduction tool. Often, our transportation systems leave behind communities of color and low-income people, especially early on as systems are planned, creating unintended consequences like displacement and communities that are left behind.
Our next transit expansions must be equitable, involving low-income people and communities of color and those historically left out of the process in the decision making.
Break Down Barriers – Make Transit Easier to Afford and More Reliable to Ride
I’ve been fortunate to have had many of my employers provide fully subsidized transit passes and have always coveted my pass as one of the best benefits I’ve received as an employee. And, when I was a boss, I always fought for my employees to have transit benefits. But when I first moved to Seattle nearly a decade ago, not only did I struggle figuring out the logistics of getting a pass — I would often opt to bike everywhere because I couldn’t afford the bus on an intern’s wages.
It is my priority to get an Affordable or Free Transit Pass into the hands of every person in King County: while many of our major employers provide full transit passes as a benefit (like Microsoft and Amazon) many do not provide this benefit to their workers, including the University of Washington and many of our human service providers like Downtown Emergency Services Center. That means thousands of employees with transit accessible jobs but no incentive to take transit.
I am committed to developing strong policies to get free and affordable passes into the hands of everyone in our city and region, especially low-wage and part-time workers. As a start, if we create a Business and Occupation Tax, all of our workers would receive a free transit pass through their employer.
For everyone else: students, youth, low-income people, people with disabilities, seniors, and more we must prioritize our investments to ensure that we are expanding and improving our programming to get a transit pass in the hands of everyone. Building on ideas like discounted summer youth passes, King County should look for both commonsense and innovative ways to bring more people onto transit.
I believe that mobility is a human right and that cost should not be a barrier to anyone to use our transit system. I am committed to working to remove barriers and inequities that impede transit access based on language, race, ethnicity, gender, LGBTQ+ status, immigration status, housing status, neighborhood, ability or disability.
Many new—and even intermediate—transit riders find our system extremely challenging to use. Our system, along with resources like Google Maps and One Bus Away, are not necessarily intuitive or readily understood. The resulting confusion can spurn people from learning about our system and ultimately from taking transit altogether, even if they are excited about no longer driving—or no longer have a choice because they can’t afford a car and related expenses.
That’s why I am proposing a new Transit Ambassador program, similar to our Downtown Ambassador program, in place of the duties of fare enforcement officers. This new position would help riders get where they need to go and build a stronger relationship between King County Metro and its customers. Whether someone is a new rider, a visitor to our county, or just has a question about what bus they should take or stop they should exit on, we need to have helpful, approachable liaisons to bridge the knowledge gap and keep riders moving.
We need resources on our transit system who are helping those struggling with their mental health or who are homeless get connected with services that will help them, so our bus drivers can focus on getting all of their passengers where they need to go safely.
Another area where we must also be working to break down the barriers to access transit is for our riders with disabilities. Metro’s Access Paratransit van program must have higher standards of service so that everyone can get where they need to go reliably and safely. After a 2017 audit showed that access riders were picked up and dropped off excessively late or early, and what should be a short ride can turn into a long, winding exhaustive trip around King County. Fortunately, Metro signed a contract with a new Access service provider that will go into effect on November 1st.
While it is great that there is a new provider and a new contract, much work needs to be done to ensure the significant transportation barriers have been broken down—especially for those who are nonverbal or speak English as a second language. Riders who rely on this service are experiencing the performance improvements they deserve to live healthy and productive lives.
A regrettably common occurrence that prevents our light rail system from being accessible to all are out-of-service escalators and elevators. Fixing this issue is essential to improving accessibility for people with disabilities and for streamlining boarding at our stations. Our elected officials must be more deeply engaged in the efficiency and delivery of the light rail and transit operations.
Lastly, our transit stations should be navigable, vibrant, and unforgettable. Right now, even experienced riders struggle with where to enter and exit. We need to improve wayfinding, bus to train transfers, and ensure our transit agencies are well integrated so getting around our stations is convenient and complementary to our trip, not confusing and disrupting.
Reform Fare Enforcement and Modernize Metro’s Performance Metrics
Many of us were taken aback to see the viral image of Sound Transit Fare Enforcement Officers at work stopping students on the first day of school in Seattle. For those who ride transit often, intimidating and humiliating fare enforcement is not an unfamiliar sight on light rail or the bus.
The response from our transit agencies after events like these is often inadequate and insensitive as well, demonstrating a lack of understanding for why the issue at hand is so damaging to the reputation of our public transit system.
It is incredibly disappointing to look at the systems we’ve put in place to police the fares on our transit metro bus systems. We are essentially policing poor people and disproportionately people of color – especially young men of color – and debasing a safe method of travel into one that is unfriendly and discouraging to the very people who are trying to use and embrace it.
It is beyond time to stop the current intimidating and humiliating practice of fare enforcement. As I detailed above, we must end fare enforcement on both our Metro Bus systems and our Sound Transit light rail programs and replace the program with ‘Transit Ambassadors’. Fare enforcement should be (and dress) more like Mr. Rogers and less like the paramilitary—fare enforcement are not trained to keep us safe, they are trained to collect fares. They should be eager to welcome people to the bus and show them how to ride properly.
And, while we are policing low-income people for not paying for the bus, they’re also spending a larger share of their incomes to pay for our transit system before they even get on the bus. Metro is largely funded by sales taxes, which means the poorest among us are already paying the largest share of our bus system, in addition to paying a higher percentage of income in transit fares.
Much of Metro’s fare enforcement is driven by an intense farebox recovery effort – a performance metric policy set by the King County Council. “Farebox Recovery” is a percentage determined by the overall operating cost of a transit agency divided by the total revenue that is generated by transit fares. At the moment, Metro’s farebox recovery rate is about 26% and this is down from about 30%.
One of the simplest acts and directives the King County Council could do to improve transit and mobility in our region is to eliminate fare enforcement and the regressive and inequitable policy that pushes King County Metro to strive for higher farebox recovery. If our transit agency planners and our policy makers weren’t so focused on ensuring specific farebox recovery quotas, they could instead focus on improving ridership and increasing services.
ORCA Lift is a great example for why farebox recovery is not an effective policy. When ORCA Lift went into effect, farebox recovery rates went down, but ridership has actually gone up, as has the overall money coming in from riders. Operations costs have increased with more transit demand, and the money coming from fares hasn’t compensated for the larger share.
Metro has worked closely with communities to update their fare enforcement policies, but it is not enough. And many of their policies are just a result of using these outdated revenue tools.
We need new revenue sources for transit that aren’t reliant on meeting a stringent farebox recovery rate—and we need to stop fare enforcing people off of transit.
I believe we must be spending our transportation funding well but our over reliance on farebox recovery is not a strong metric for financial responsibility. There is much that can be done at Metro to improve financial and operational performance and we should have metrics that value ridership, equity, and financial responsibility.
Getting affordable passes into the hands of many and creating a streamlined and available customer service representative are just the first few steps we could take to create a better Metro system. The County Council should set ambitious goals for transit ridership, overall agency financial health and operational efficiencies, and measures for how we are serving the most vulnerable in our community. New metrics like looking at commute length and creating a “quality of commute” measure might spur us to better leverage light rail and provide deeper and more frequent bus service into neighborhoods.
Expedite Sound Transit Link Light Rail Expansion
Before we dive into the many ways we can speed up light rail delivery, it is also important to make sure we don’t go back. In order to make progress on transit and mobility in King County and across Washington state I want to encourage you to reject Tim Eyman’s Initiative 976 this fall.
I-976 is an attack on the progress we’ve made on transportation across Washington State. Not only will it have serious impacts on Sound Transit funding and our local transit bus funding, I-976 threatens almost every facet of transportation across the state. From our state patrol, ferries, sidewalks and street paving in cities of all sizes, its impact will be far reaching. Vote NO on I-976.
The expansion of our light rail system has greatly improved King County’s mobility, becoming the commute of choice for thousands while reducing road congestion and carbon emissions at the same time.
In my time at Transportation Choices Coalition, I worked closely with engineers, planners, elected officials across the Puget Sound region, and community stakeholders to not just expand our light rail system with Sound Transit 3 but to ensure we were planning and building out a system that works well for generations to come.
Now, as King County works with Sound Transit to build out a more complete and robust system, there are a number of key priorities the County Council should be acting on to make sure this expansion is delivered to Ballard, West Seattle, and beyond on time, on budget, and without issue.
Let’s begin by getting a head start on permitting. King County, Seattle, and other local jurisdictions must work closely with Sound Transit to streamline permitting processes so that no delay is created because of disagreements over land use and acquisition. Making sure property owners are part of the conversations in the planning will be critical to ensure we are building a system for today and for 100 years from now.
In the same vein, we must ensure decisions by stakeholders and elected leaders are made now—for on time and early delivery of light rail we must determine one alternative for the West Seattle and Ballard expansion by the end of 2020. Elected leaders and a stakeholder advisory group have been reviewing alternatives and options for West Seattle and Ballard. While getting to just one preferred alternative by the end of 2020 will require hard conversations and difficult trade offs, it is critical for ensuring these projects are delivered on time.
Some of the alternatives that are being considered by the Sound Transit advisory group will potentially require additional funding. We must make the necessary investments to build a 100-year system, which may require securing additional funding, so it is critical we make a decision soon about a preferred alternative, ensure we are realistic about available funds, and act responsibly with the funding that voters have approved.
Next, we must secure additional funding—cash flow for planning and construction of these projects is one major impediment to delivering light rail early. If we are able to secure additional funding to front end the financing of these projects (and plan for the future expansions) it would help get the seven stations planned in District 4 open early.
Additional revenue could come from other public entities like the state or the Port, or from private businesses that have a desire to see light rail delivered early. It could require additional resources from taxpayers or could be funded through creative bonding tools. Either way, additional funding is necessary if these projects are to open on time or early and I am committed to leaving no stone unturned.
I am also calling for the legislature to authorize Tax Increment Financing for light rail areas. This is a financing mechanism to capture the value of the investment to pay for upgrades. It would also allow for requiring affordable housing in transit oriented development areas, local hire commitments, and ensure that we are building affordable and thriving communities around our transit stations.
Additionally, that means confirming federal investment in these projects. Nearly a quarter of the $54 billion required to build ST3 projects is assumed to come from federal sources. It is essential for our regional leaders to work closely with our congressional delegation so that the appropriate advocacy and work is done to secure that funding. Maintaining good standing of existing federal funding requests in our region is critical, including completion of the Center City Street Car Connector.
Other ways to expedite light rail expansion include using “Design-Build” contracts, rather than “Design-Bid-Build” contracts. Sound Transit’s Design-Build contracts have proven to both keep costs down and expedite the delivery of projects. Angle Lake is the best example, it was delivered 4 years early and $40 million under budget using the design build model without compromising strong community engagement. I will push for Sound Transit to use a Design-Build bidding process for the Ballard and West Seattle extensions.
I will also work with Sound Transit and our communities to ensure infill stations, like 130th Street Station, Graham Street Station, and the Boeing Access Road Station, that were funded as a part of Sound Transit 3 will be on expedited timelines that make good financial sense and fit with community-based planning.
King County must support workforce development opportunities in the building and construction trades apprentice programs, which will ensure we have a strong, local workforce ready to build Sound Transit 3 projects.
We cannot rely only on Sound Transit alone to get these projects completed. King County has ten of the eighteen seats on the Sound Transit Board and while we are fortunate to have transit champion as County Executive, the King County Council must be an engaged and active partner, and I’m prepared to bring the necessary knowledge and leadership to the table to advocate for our communities and neighborhoods during this process.
Match Housing Needs with Transit Needs
As discussed at length in my “Meeting King County’s Climate Moment” plan, we must build affordable housing now—and we must orient it around transit hubs to create connected communities easily accessible by transit to reduce carbon emissions and the necessity of single-occupancy vehicles.
We need to be intentional about where we build density, bringing a thorough approach to zoning decisions. Orienting new growth along transit corridors will be crucial for building a connected county where transit is not only accessible, but also more convenient and affordable than driving. Additionally, taking an active role to prevent displacement—including both traditional and climate gentrification—will be an important element of this effort.
It is no secret that communities around permanent light rail infrastructure have seen rising rents and home prices. Following years of disruptive construction, longtime residents are then priced out of the communities they live in. This is especially true in communities with a higher concentration of people of color. We can’t let this unfortunate symptom of transit development go unabated.
I’m very proud of the work that Puget Sound Sage, Futurewise, HDC, and Transportation Choices did to include equitable transit oriented development policies in the Sound Transit 3 package. We worked hard to develop policies for how affordable housing must be included in station area planning, as well as making space the community can lead the station area development to prevent displacement.
We need to ensure that work continues in the future. Like most planning work, just because a policy is in place, it doesn’t mean it will be effectively used. Ongoing engagement is necessary to ensure that communities around transit are affordable, are not at risk of displacement, and are thriving, with walkable, bikeable neighborhoods and hyper-local economic opportunity.
Last summer, after even more engagement, Sound Transit adopted additional equitable transit oriented development policies solidifying these values in ongoing agency practices. While Sound Transit now has those policies in place, we need to bring the same perspective to the County, along with continued engagement on this front as new stations are planned.
I am inspired by the work of the communities who are organizing a vision and future around the future Graham Street Station. They have developed a vision for community development without displacement through organizing and developing community power, centering the leadership of people of color, developing a plan for community ownership and more. I am committed to supporting this organizing and community based planning model to ensure we are creating equitable development around our transit stations.
Additionally, as we look for opportunities to speed up light rail development, we should be thinking about creative strategies for land acquisition. Sound Transit has to acquire significant amounts of land in order to build their projects, so let’s look for new opportunities for Sound Transit to work with housing partners and developers. Acquiring that property now may reduce future costs of buying the land, and the state could potentially develop a transit oriented development land fund that aids Sound Transit in additional land purchases.
Connecting to Transit: Our Communities, Schools, and Employment Centers
King County must work with local jurisdictions and must integrate more seamlessly with other transit agencies to ensure that our transit infrastructure has safe and reliable connections to get people to and from transit.
I’ve knocked on thousands of doors in this district and navigating on transit around Northwest Seattle would be much safer and more reliable if the streets that connected to transit had sidewalks, and if streets and crosswalks were safe and were well lit.
Tragically, pedestrian deaths are on the rise in Washington state, and since the beginning of 2019, there have been 10 or more instances of car crashes killing or injuring Seattleites, just on Aurora alone. If we’re to significantly reduce these fatalities, it will require proactive efforts to create safer, pedestrian-friendly streets.
As your Councilmember, I will make sure our riders have a safe walk to transit. I will invest funds from our park and ride fees to speed up the installation of bus stop improvements and safe routes to transit. Metro and Sound Transit must be working with local jurisdictions to develop solutions to create safer and more reliable connections to transit, from sidewalks to bike paths.
Additionally, this is another reason we must fully fund Metro Connects, which aims to improve more than 4,000 bus stops through sidewalk, bench, and shelter improvements.
Similarly, King County should also work to make our transit stations fully streamlined hubs for the intersection of buses, light rail, pedestrians, and bikes. With updated design and signage, we can ensure that each station is unique and memorable, making it convenient and easy to transfer between routes. Additional bike storage options at hubs would go a long way to preventing riders from delay when a bus they take has a full bike rack.
I also believe there is an opportunity to build more robust solutions through smart partnerships with rideshare, bikeshare, and scooter-sharing companies—but only with safety, climate, and worker protections front of mind.
King County has jurisdiction over only unincorporated parts of the County in this regard, but I believe in building strong relationships with our County’s municipalities, and would work hand-in-hand with local elected leaders to prioritize first and last mile solutions.
Quality and complete transit routes are also crucial for connecting children and families, especially low-income, to our parks and natural areas. Trailhead Direct is a nice start, but King County residents have extremely limited transit access to the parks in their own neighborhoods.
A recent report from the Aspen Institute and UW determined that 71% of County parks are not easily accessible via transit during high demand times. The same report concluded that fewer than one in five King County kids receive the recommended hour of physical activity a day, calling it a “crisis.” While 80% of kids reach their activities via car, we’ve got to do better connecting those who rely on taking transit to parks and activities.
Metro is not doing enough to coordinate with Seattle Public Schools and the public schools around our county. We have schools that aren’t reachable by transit of any kind and we should be developing and our planning our schools to be connected to transit for our educators and families.
Public transit can only go so far when there aren’t safe ways to access it. In contrast, optimizing our transit system to conveniently link and integrate walking, biking, riding the bus, and taking light rail combines options and greatly expands possible ways of getting around. On the County Council, I’ll make the smart and necessary investments to ensure we’re getting the most of our transit system.
Transit has played an essential role in my career—and in my life. Over the years of living in Seattle, I’ve been a passenger on countless bus routes, fought for light rail expansion region-wide, and learned more about our neighborhoods and communities through riding transit.
We have an amazing transit system, but the fact is there are numerous ways it could be even better. King County must build a more robust and more equitable transit system that can better connect us all to the county we call home.
The King County Council can’t just serve as a rubber stamp for transit status quo—we need leaders who will work to make this system even better, look outside the box, challenge Metro’s regressive financing, and recognize that there are improvements we could be making right now.
As a transit leader, transit advocate—and most importantly, as a transit rider—I am ready to stand up and fight for these much needed solutions on the County Council.