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Eye On Olympia

New poll data on ballot measures…

Referendum 67 – a battle between insurers and lawyers which over a new law allowing triple damages when insurers wrongly deny a claim – is apparently being won by the lawyers. A new poll sponsored by a University of Washington research center, 48 percent of voters support it, and 31 percent don’t. (Undecided: 21 percent)

And voters are apparently leaning toward modifying the state constitution to make it easier for school districts to pass property tax levies. The poll showed 59 percent support, 31 percent against constitutional amendment 4204, better known as the simple majority amendment, since it would replace an existing requirement for 60 percent “supermajority” approval from voters with a 50-percent-plus-1 simple majority..

But Tim Eyman’s Initiative 960 is a tossup among voters – 41 percent yes, 40 percent no – with nearly 1 in 5 voters still decided.

Among the other findings:

-Setting up a state “budget stabilization account” – also known as a “rainy day fund”, although you won’t find that term on the ballot – 61 percent yes, 17 percent no.

-Interestingly, Democrats and independents are overwhelmingly in favor of the simple majority amendment for school levies. Republicans are almost evenly split – 44 percent yes, 45 percent no – on the measure.

The poll was sponsored by the University of Washington’s Washington Institute for the Study of Ethnicity & Race. The institute surveyed 601 registered voters Oct. 22 to Oct. 28, with a margin of error of 4 percent.


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Richard Roesler covers Washington state news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Olympia.

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