Kemper Freeman supports I-1125 — thanks to all of you, we’ve got incredible momentum

by | Jun 10, 2011

 Last year’s 64% vote for Initiative 1053 was extraordinary.  Not only did it receive a supermajority level of public support, it was the 4th time voters approved its taxpayer protection policies.  Voters clearly said they’d had it with Olympia’s insatiable appetite for taking more of the people’s money.  Even so, before this year’s session started, Gregoire said:  “I’m not gonna let 1053 stand in the way of me moving forward for what I think is right.”

        And that’s exactly what she/they did.  In direct conflict with what the voters said, the Legislature fundamentally undermined and sidestepped I-1053 in various ways during this year’s session.  It’s shocking how brazen and disrespectful they were of the people’s decision.  We would need several initiatives to reverse everything they did to I-1053 — we simply can’t do that.  Instead, we are focusing on their worst violations.

        Totally contrary to I-1053’s policies, the Legislature re-empowered Gregoire’s Transportation Commission — a bunch of unelected bureaucrats — to unilaterally impose tolls on our state’s streets, roads, highways, and bridges.

        With our state’s slow-growing economy and high unemployment rates, families and businesses are struggling just handling their existing burdens — they’re hard pressed to take on any more.  Despite the fact that Washington has the highest gas tax in the nation, they’re planning on forcing us to pay twice with sky-high tolls.  It shows a complete lack of compassion for the taxpayers’ plight and totally ignores what the voters said in November.

        Their arrogance and disrespect for the voters has spurred this year’s initiative.  I-1125 does the following:

*      Resurrects I-1053’s policy that the Legislature, and not Gregoire’s Transportation Commission, set tolls so we can hold toll-crazy politicians accountable;

*      Requires that transportation taxes and tolls only go toward transportation, prohibiting raids and diversions to non-transportation purposes;

*      Reinforces current law that requires that tolls be project-specific, preventing tolls from becoming de facto taxes;

*      Requires that tolls GO AWAY/STOP/EXPIRE after the project is paid for (that’s the way it’s always been, but Olympia recently changed it so tolls will now go on FOREVER — I-1125 says NO to never-ending tolls).

*      Prohibits gas-tax-funded lanes on state highways from being transferred or used for non-highway purposes (our state Constitution — the 18th Amendment — already prohibits this, but politicians are still trying to weasel out of this constitutional prohibition); and

*      Ensures that tolls are uniform and consistent.

        This year’s I-1125 reinforces protections in our state Constitution and resurrects policies approved by voters with I-1053.

        The signature drive for this year’s initiative — I-1125 — has taken off like a rocket.  Across the state, people are lining up to sign petitions to get it on the ballot (http://www.voterswantmorechoices.com/pdf/1125petition.pdf).  Everyone knows that politicians in Olympia can’t be trusted without reasonable limits placed on their power to tax and impose fees.

        We’re also very excited that long-time supporter Kemper Freeman has agreed to help with I-1125.  He said: “I strongly support I-1125 and have contributed a total of $500,000 during the month of May to help give voters the opportunity to sign petitions to get it on the ballot for a public vote.  For decades, I’ve been a passionate advocate for strengthening our transportation infrastructure and I like the spotlight that I-1125 puts on this critical issue.  I welcome the debate and feel very comfortable letting the voters decide.  I urge all of you to help us give the people the chance to vote on I-1125 in November.”

        He’s not alone — our latest campaign report shows that 1072 donors have contributed a total of $681,321 through May 31st.  And thanks to a huge mailing sent out recently, our thousands of supporters throughout the state have I-1125 petitions too.  Please help us collect the necessary 300,000 voter signatures by the July 8th deadline.

        Help us protect I-1053’s policies with this year’s Initiative 1125 and help us take care of Tim’s loan to I-1053 (thanks to your generous support, it’s been whittled down from $250,000 to $188,000).  Send us a donation for $10, $25, $50, $100, $250, $500, $1000, $2500, $5000 or more (there are no limits on how much can be given).  We urge you to strongly consider a monthly contribution.  You can make a secure PayPal or VISA or MasterCard contribution by going to our website — http://www.VotersWantMoreChoices.com — sometimes this web link doesn’t work so please cut and paste it if you have to, sorry for the extra step — OR, you can print out the form below, fill it out, and return it with a check or credit card information.

        We’re very excited about doing I-1125 this year (and “Save the 2/3’s” next year).

 

Send us an email and let us know what you think.  We’re eager to get your feedback.

 

FULL STEAM AHEAD!