The Okanogan County Transit Authority will soon begin searching for its first manager to lead the agency’s efforts to develop a county-wide transit system, Winthrop Mayor Dave Acheson said.
Acheson, who serves on the planning board that developed the transit proposal voters approved in the recent general election, said the director’s job may start as part-time and evolve to full-time as the agency ramps up operations.
County voters agreed by a margin of 56 percent to 44 percent to impose a sales tax increase of up to .04 percent to support a county-wide public transit system.
The levy will produce about $2 million a year to fund the operation, equipment, maintenance and facilities of a bus system with a hub in the Omak/Okanogan area and connections to and from other primary cities and towns in county, including Winthrop, Twisp and Pateros.
Sales taxes to support the system will be collected beginning Jan. 1, but won’t be dispersed until spring. Acheson said the public probably won’t see the agency taking much definitive action until mid-2014.