Thousands of Pierce County transit riders are hoping for a miracle. As of Sunday night, there were about 15,000 votes left to be counted and Proposition 1 was losing by around 695 votes.
Proposition 1 would increase the sales tax three tenths of one percent. If it fails, all weekend routes and weekday service after 7 p.m. will come to a screeching halt. Service for the disabled will also be reduced.
Very disappointing, we just have to hope for the best, said Pat Walker, a senior citizen who rides the bus.
Every Sunday, Walker uses the bus to get to church. But since she doesn t drive, she calls it a necessity the rest of the week.
So many of us are retired in this area and we can t afford a car, can t afford insurance, she said.
Public transit is Shannon O Neill s livelihood.
To go to work, to go to appointments, to go grocery shopping, I use it for everything, said O Neill.
Despite days of counting, the margin of difference between the approve or reject for Proposition 1 hasn t changed much. Opponents say Public Transit s financial problems shouldn t have to be solved by the public.
Tax increases are forever and the competitive disadvantage in Pierce County could really affect our economy, said Nick Sherwood, a member of the Reject Prop 1 Campaign.
As the vote comes down to the wire, it weighs heavily on Walker s mind. As she boards her Sunday bus, she says a prayer.
Hoping to God it will pass, said Walker.
Pierce County Elections Officials say the final ballots will be counted Tuesday. If Prop. 1 fails, the transit service cuts will start in the spring of 2014.