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Posts tagged: super majority for taxes

Supermajority for taxes struck down. Now what?

OLYMPIA – For months, legislators have waited anxiously for the Washington Supreme Court to answer a political question that has roiled the state for two decades: Can voters make them pass any tax increase with a two-thirds majority?

No, a divided court said Thursday, not without a constitutional amendment. Supermajority requirements in Initiative 1053 were struck down.

Because I-1053 and other similar ballot measures since 1993 have been sold as a way to rein in free-spending legislators, voters might now be asking if they need to brace for an avalanche of new taxes.

Probably not, based on comments of legislators in the wake of Thursday’s decision.

To read the rest of this item, or to comment, click here to go inside the blog…

To read the court's majority and minority opinions, click on the document file below.


WA Lege Day 25: Super-majorities on taxes

OLYMPIA — The Washington Supreme Court did not rule today on whether the initiative-required supermajority for taxes is constitutional, but a Senate committee will consider three different plans to make it so.

The state's highest court traditionally releases opinions on Thursday mornings, so once a week the fast friends and strong foes of the two-thirds majority hold their breath wondering if this is the day they find out whether the justices will uphold a King County Superior Court judge's ruling that overturned the statute that has been approved several different ways by voters.

Not this morning folks.

But at 10 a.m. The Senate Government Operations Committee a hearing on has three — count 'em, three — different resolutions to lock the two-thirds majority down in the constitutions. They're all  have similar wording, and many of the same co-sponsors, so it seems likely they'll all be grouped together for the hearing.

Lots more on the hearing schedule today. For a complete list of the bills and resolutions on tap, go inside the blog. 

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About this blog

Jim Camden is a veteran political reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

Jonathan Brunt is an enterprise reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

Kip Hill is a general assignments reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

Nick Deshais covers Spokane City Hall for The Spokesman-Review.

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