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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Cost of ballot measures must be known prior to submittal

OLYMPIA – Supporters and opponents of state ballot measures will get the official estimate of the cost of proposed laws before writing their statements for the voter’s pamphlets.

Under a law signed Wednesday by Gov. Jay Inslee, the official estimate of a ballot measure’s fiscal impact from the Office of Financial Management must be given to both sides of the campaign before they submit their arguments for or against the measure to be included in the pamphlet that goes to all of the state’s voters. Currently those fiscal statements sometimes aren’t ready before supporters and opponents must submit their arguments.

Supporters told legislators the change will help voters be better informed of the possible effects of initiatives and referenda.

Inslee vetoed a section that would allow either side to challenge the fiscal impact statement in Thurston County Superior Court. (Editor’s note: Due to a reporter’s error, an early version of this story failed to note the veto of that section.)