Transit board member talks of tax

  By CRAIG MURPHY Of the Keizertimes Opposition to the proposed business payroll tax to pay for local transit service has been rather vocal. But there are those calling for the Salem-Keizer Transit District’s 0.21 percent payroll tax on the Nov. 3 ballot to be passed. Kathy Lincoln from the Salem-Keizer Transit Board of Directors falls into the latter category. Lincoln spoke about the measure at the Oct. 8 West Keizer Neighborhood Association meeting. The tax would pay for extended evening bus service, weekend service and free bus passes for area middle school and high school students. The extended service would be phase two of the transit district’s Moving Forward plan. “We haven’t had these services here since 2009,” Lincoln said. “There is (currently) no service from 9 p.m. Friday to 6 a.m. Monday. We have almost 200,000 people in the area. We need a bus service to at least bring us up to the service in Corvallis and Tillamook. Eugene-Springfield has an amazing service. More transit services allows for a larger labor pool, brings people downtown and allows more people to attend events on the weekend. It’s an essential public service anymore.” Lincoln, who ran unopposed for a transit seat in the spring, noted the transit district had levies fail in 2006 and 2008. That led to a question this year: adding to property taxes or a payroll...

Read More