Washington is the 4th highest taxed state in the nation
Olympia started on Monday so hang onto your wallet – taxpayers are never safe when the Legislature is in session. So for the next several months, we’re all vulnerable.
Fortunately, we’ve got an unsung hero — Initiative 960 — that’s been protecting taxpayers since its passage in 2007. It continues to be incredibly effective at deterring “revenue raising” in Olympia.
Besides the very effective 2/3-vote-on-taxes requirement, the initiative continues to put every tax and fee increase bill under the brightest spotlight imaginable. It requires the state budget office to identify any revenue-raising bill, calculate how much it’s going to cost taxpayers over the next 10 years, AND THEN SEND AN EMAIL TO ALL MEMBERS OF THE MEDIA AND EVERY CITIZEN WHO SIGNS UP TELLING THEM ITS’ COSTS AND WHO’S SPONSORING IT, INCLUDING LEGISLATORS’ NAMES, EMAIL ADDRESSES, AND PHONE NUMBERS. I-960’s tax and fee increase email alert system is keeping the public informed and scaring the politicians.
Here’s a news story about it:
Taxes? Fees? I-960 rattles Olympia
Legislators uneasy with new scrutiny
By CHRIS McGANN, SEATTLE P-I
OLYMPIA — Lawmakers are tiptoeing through a new political minefield as they deal with Tim Eyman’s latest initiative that established an automatic public notification system for legislation that raises taxes or fees. Some legislators complain it is stifling necessary debate. “It is getting in the way of open consideration of ideas,” said Rep. Maralyn Chase, D-Shoreline, who sponsored a bill that would tax greenhouse gas emissions (the bill would cost entities that extract or import things such as coal, petroleum and natural gas more than $26 billion over 10 years). “It is getting in the way of taking care of the business of our state. You would not believe the vitriol that has come in on my telephone today,” said Chase, who added lawmakers will be reluctant to have their names associated with any bill that would trigger I-960 notification.
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We implore each and every one of you to take the time to sign up for I-960’s tax and fee increase email alert system:
http://listserv.wa.gov/cgi-bin/wa?SUBED1=TAX-AND-FEE-PROPOSALS&A=1 — type in your name, your email address, and click on the button: JOIN TAX-AND-FEE-PROPOSALS (if you have trouble, let me know).