Advisory Vote No. 9 (Leasehold excise tax)
Washington voters are asked their “advice” this fall on a decision the Legislature made this spring to change tax rates for some tribal lands.
But the Legislature isn’t obliged to heed the result of the advisory vote, and, if history holds, won’t even revisit the issue if voters say it should be repealed.
The advisory vote is required by an earlier initiative designed to make it more difficult for the Legislature to raise taxes.
Advisory Vote No. 9 involves taxes for some property owned by federally recognized Indian tribes. Like state and local governments, the tribes are exempt from property taxes, but under House Bill 1287, some lease-hold property can be subject to an excise tax. That change in tax law will bring the state an estimated $1.3 million over the next 10 years. The bill passed 37-12 in the Senate and 61-37 in the House.