Golden oldie: it turns out all our problems started 17 years ago with I-695
While I was at a Mariner’s game this week with my 8 year old daughter Riley, a grizzled old guy came up to me and said “Hey, you’re that car tab guy, let me shake your hand.” It was pretty cool.
We’ve been fighting for taxpayers for nearly 17 years and been involved with numerous tax-related topics. But THE initiative we’re most identified with is Initiative 695 in 1999 that tried to lower car tab taxes to a flat fair $30 per year for everyone.
I was 33 years old — my wife and then 6 month old son Jackson had just moved into our house in Mukilteo. It was my first start-to-finish initiative campaign.
Talk about a brutal baptism of fire. Big Business, Big Labor, politicians, the press, they were all against us. But there were more taxpayers than tax-takers and so we won in a landslide. After I-695 passed, taxpayers weren’t gouged when registering and licensing their vehicles.
But for nearly a decade, our initiative was blamed for most everything. “Heavy rainfall in Seattle caused by I-695” — “I-695 spurs riots in LA” — “Earthquake in East Timor exacerbated by I-695”. Our opponents couldn’t get enough of it.
But eventually, their silliness eventually dissipated.
So today’s Everett Herald gave me a vivid Vietnam flashback when I saw they’d published this:
Revenues took big Eyman hit
EVERETT HERALD, April 27, 2016
Kudos to The Herald for the April 7 editorial “State relies on an unfair, insufficient tax system” that highlighted our horrible tax system and insufficient revenues for basic services compared to that of our neighboring states.
However, the editorial missed a major reason for this situation — I-695. Before I-695 there was sufficient revenues to provide a reasonable level of services for the people of our state. Furthermore, the automobile excise tax was somewhat progressive, because low-income people generally don’t drive expensive cars.
So we can thank Tim Eyman and his supporters for making our tax system even worse than it was before and gutting a revenue steam that provided many services that are no longer available or significantly underfunded such as the state ferry system and support for local law enforcement.
Jerry Fraser, Lynnwood
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Dont-cha just love it?
Olympia has an insatiable tax appetite. No matter how much they take, they always want more. So we, the taxpayers, have to fight back or else they’ll take it all. For years, the only way we’ve fought back against their craziness was with our tax initiatives.
This year, we’re doing something new: we’re working super hard to un-elect those undemocratic Democrats who disrespected their constituents. Those 58 House and Senate Democrats from pro-2/3 districts deserve to be fired for their arrogant refusal to abide by the voters 6-time ballot box mandate and let the people vote on a 2/3-for-taxes constitutional amendment.
In addition, Jack, Mike, and our entire team are committed to protecting taxpayers with our follow-up initiatives “Tougher To Raise Taxes” and “Bring Back Our $30 Car Tabs.”
We are junk-yard dogs when it comes to this stuff. So you can count on us to keep trying.
But whether we continue to succeed or not is up to you. We will keep winning on behalf of taxpayers as long as your financial support continues. Please make a donation today. With your help and support, we have accomplished extraordinary things for the taxpayers of Washington. Help us continue.