SPOKANE, Wash. - When voters passed Initiative 976 last month, they voted to cap car tab fees at $20, but that also meant slashing the transportation funding across the state.
Following the election, Governor Jay Inslee ordered the Washington State Department of Transportation to put $90 million worth of projects on hold. At the top of that list? The North Spokane Corridor.
For many who live near the long-awaited North-South Freeway, it's been difficult to learn the project is on hold.
"It's a been a long time coming and just when we thought we would finally get it done, we see the pause button hit and that's a little frustrating," Michael Cathcart said.
Catchcart was just elected to Spokane City Council, representing District 1. He's lived near the project for 12 years and said he's confused how this happened because he says the freeway wasn't funded with tab fees.
"The legislature, as you may remember, approved a very large gas tax in 2015 and a substantial portion of that is going to the north-south freeway, so there really is no reason for this to be, you know, halted," Cathcart said.
The North Spokane Corridor will eventually connect downtown Spokane with far-north Spokane County, cutting down commutes and increasing commerce.
Cathcart said he plans to fight for construction on the project to resume once he takes office, but for now, the North Spokane Corridor is on hold.