Proposal: Would require the Legislature to approve and send to voters by April 15 a constitutional amendment that requires two-thirds super-majorities in both chambers to pass any future tax increase. If the Legislature doesn’t comply, the state’s sales tax would be reduced by 1 percent.
Background: If this seems like a familiar concept, that’s because voters have been asked to approve such super-majorities for tax increases five times since 1993. Voters regularly said yes, but after the first two times, the Legislature changed it back to a simple majority after two years, which is possible with initiatives. After I-1185 was approved in 2012, the concept was challenged in the state Supreme Court, which said such a change requires a constitutional amendment. But an amendment can’t come through the initiative process, it must start in the Legislature. I-1366 seeks to use the initiative process to force the Legislature to send an amendment to the ballot.
Supporting: This is the latest measure from perennial initiative developers Tim Eyman, of Mukilteo, and Mike and Jack Fagan, of Spokane, who also sponsored the previous versions. They point to strong voter support for the idea as a way to protect the public from a tax-hungry Legislature. It also has support from many conservative Republicans in the Legislature, and the state GOP. The campaign has raised $1.7 million, spending most of it to gather signatures to qualify for the ballot. Biggest financial backer is Clyde Holland, chairman of a Vancouver-based development company, who has given $540,000
Opposing: Permanent Defense with the Northwest Progressive Institute, perennial Eyman foes, and other progressive groups, labor organizations and many state Democrats oppose this measure, saying it gives control of tax decisions to a small minority in the Legislature who can vote against any proposal. They also argue that it’s unconstitutional because it tries to do indirectly with an initiative what the court already has said can’t be done directly. An opposition committee has raised $25,000, with $15,000 from the Service Employees International Union and $10,000 from the Federation of State Employees.
Prospects: A statewide survey by Elway Polls in July found the measure had a 49 percent approval rating, which is a bad position because approval is more likely to go down than up as an election approaches. Eyman also has some problems with the Public Disclosure Commission from past elections which could affect this campaign. If I-1366 passes, a court challenges is expected.
A proposed constitutional amendment to require tax increases to be approved by a two-thirds super majority moved out of Senate committee Thursday morning.
House Republicans tried unsuccessfully to maneuver around committee hearings for a proposed constitutional amendment to require two-thirds majorities for tax increases.
Perennial initiative activist Tim Eyman has secured $650,000 for next year’s campaigns, even before he can file a real ballot measure.
OLYMPIA – Initiative entrepreneur Tim Eyman and his detractors squared off recently in the Capitol, where the ingenuity of their latest ideas was overshadowed by doubts about their earnestness.
Court explains why it didn’t block I-1366 from the ballot, leaves open the question of whether it will survive a future challenge.
The 2015 election won’t set any records, but it may have provided us with a few tactics which future campaigns might want to avoid.
A legal challenge to the budget-smashing Initiative 1366 should be pursued as soon as possible.
Washington voters gave overwhelming support to a new law to protect endangered animals, and seemed likely to pass by a much smaller margin another attempt to force the Legislature to approve tax increases by a supermajority.
If you want lawmakers to stop working together, vote for I-1366, because it would give a superduperminority of 17 legislators the power to stop a basic education tax plan.
Agree with The Spokesman-Review, or not, vote.
Voters are evenly split on the latest initiative that would require supermajorities to approve taxes but seem strongly in favor of one that would have extra penalties for selling ivory and products from endangered animals, a new Elway Poll says.
Tim Eyman’s latest budget-exploding initiative could be his worst. It could also be his last. Voters should send it to a resounding defeat.
Retaliatory sales tax cut would reverse legislative efforts to comply with primary constitutional obligation to fund Washington schools.
Constitutional amendment requiring two-thirds vote on taxes would force lawmakers to cut spending first.
As Tim Eyman campaigns for his latest tax-limiting initiative, he’s ducking questions about a possible state investigation into previous campaign funds.
OLYMPIA – Perennial initiative sponsor Tim Eyman could find himself in court over charges he broke campaign finance laws for the way he moved money back and forth in previous initiative efforts. Some of that money went to Eyman for his personal use, and the transactions were not properly reported under state campaign laws, Public Disclosure Commission investigators said. They recommended the state attorney general’s office start “appropriate legal action.”
PDC report says Tim Eyman broke campaign finance laws on reporting and spending money for personal use. Staff wants stiff penalties beyond what the commission can levy.
OLYMPIA — State investigators found Monday that anti-tax initiative promoter Tim Eyman apparently violated Washington election law by misspending campaign funds.
OLYMPIA – Washington voters will decide this fall whether they want to try to force the Legislature into passing a constitutional amendment that would require supermajorities for tax increases. The state Supreme Court agreed Friday with a lower court that Initiative 1366, the latest ballot measure from Tim Eyman and his Spokane partners Mike and Jack Fagan, can’t be kept off the ballot because some people think it’s unconstitutional.
OLYMPIA – The latest initiative designed to make it harder for the Washington Legislature to raise taxes survived a court challenge Friday when a King County Superior Court judge refused to block it from the November ballot. Judge Dean Lum said he believes the measure is clearly beyond the scope of a ballot initiative set down in the state constitution, but that’s not enough to keep it off the ballot.