City of Seattle

Ed Murray, Mayor


SUBJECT:   Mayor announces expanded transit program for City employees
5/15/2013  9:30:00 PM

Mayor announces expanded transit program for City employees
Saves City $2 million in coming year

SEATTLE - Today Mayor Mike McGinn announced the City will be changing how it supports City employees who commute by public transit. The policy change, adding the ORCA Passport to the City's ORCA program, will enhance efficiencies and save taxpayers money while maintaining or increasing the transit benefit to nearly all employees. The Passport program allows the City to provide transit passes to most employees at a single price based on actual ridership. Passport passes are valid fare on any of the participating, ground-based transit agency routes, and have no limitations on zones of travel.

"The City of Seattle, as a major employer, has long helped lead the way in providing transit benefits to our employees," said McGinn. "I am pleased to announce that we will have a new, simpler and better way to help our employees commute on public transit while saving taxpayers $2 million in the coming year. The most recent report from Commute Seattle shows that more and more people commute to downtown via public transit. And while our transit agencies face serious financial challenges, we are working to help make it easier to take public transit and relieve downtown congestion on our streets."

The new program offers greater flexibility by providing full fare on all:

    • Regular bus services on Community Transit, Everett Transit, Kitsap Transit, Metro Transit, Pierce Transit, and Sound Transit
    • Regular service on Sound Transit Link light rail
    • Regular service on Sound Transit Sounder commuter rail (including Rail Plus partnership with Amtrak Cascades)
    • Regular service on Seattle Streetcar
    • Regular service on King County Water Taxi (Vashon and West Seattle routes)
    • Regular service on Kitsap Transit Foot Ferry (Port Orchard and Annapolis routes)
    • Access Transportation service on Kitsap Transit and Metro Transit (eligible riders only)

The new program also provides:

  • Up to $90/month vanpool fare subsidy on Community Transit, Kitsap Transit, Metro Transit, and Pierce Transit vanpool vans.
  • Up to $35/month vanshare fare subsidy on Community Transit, Kitsap Transit, Metro Transit and Pierce Transit vanshare vans.

The Passport passes are not valid on Washington state ferries. Employees who need a ferry pass can choose to receive their transit subsidy on one of the Washington State Ferry pass products instead.

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Office of the Mayor