Wash. lawmakers pass $8.5B transportation budget - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Wash. lawmakers pass $8.5B transportation budget

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) - The state Legislature has passed an updated state transportation budget that lawmakers say will bankroll thousands of construction jobs.

The $8.5 billion transportation plan passed the Senate on a 37-11 vote Tuesday night, and now goes to Gov. Chris Gregoire for final approval.

The supplemental budget plan is about $1 billion more than last year's biennial budget.

The increase comes mostly from federal money the state will use to pay for large projects, including a $590 million rail corridor from Oregon to British Columbia.

Some Republicans from southwestern Washington opposed the transportation plan, saying they don't like its call to study the possibility of tolling on the Columbia River crossing.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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