Offering frequent news and analysis from the majestic Evergreen State and beyond, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Momentum against Tim Eyman's Initiative 1033 continues to build

The word is finally getting out.

In churches, in coffee shops, on the sidelines at soccer games, at meetings of civic and service organizations, Washingtonians are finally starting to talk about Initiative 1033 and the tremendous harm that it would inflict if we fail to stop Tim Eyman from misleading our fellow citizens in November.

Earlier this week, the NO on I-1033 Coalition launched television ads to help explain the consequences of Eyman's jobs-killing wealth transfer scheme to voters, and Governor Gregoire delivered a sharp denunciation of I-1033 during a special appearance at the Washington Conservation Voters' Breakfast of Champions.

State Treasurer Jim McIntire also warned that the initiative could cost taxpayers tens of millions of additional dollars (beyond the whopping $7.7 billion deficit I-1033 would create) by damaging the state's credit rating.

Today, The Seattle Times and Tri-City Herald joined The Olympian in taking positions against I-1033. The Herald declared:
The measure would use the worst economic recession in decades as the base line for establishing limits on county and city revenue growth.

Every part of government would be hurt -- police and fire protection, schools, programs to help the elderly and disabled, public health programs, maintenance for our parks, roads and other infrastructure -- you name it.

That's why the initiative's opponents represent a wide diversity of interests. The list includes business, labor and religious leaders, advocates for the mentally impaired, children's advocates and educators, cities and counties.
The Times adds:
I-1033 uses excess collections of all taxes to reduce one tax, the property tax. The effect, after five years of a normal economy, is that the state property tax "goes almost to zero," said Kriss Sjoblom, vice president of the nonpartisan Washington Research Council. I-1033 would quietly erase the state's one major tax on wealth, leaving the state depending on the business revenue tax and the sales tax. These fall more in recessions than the property tax does, putting the state more at risk.
That's what we mean when we talk about I-1033 being a wealth transfer.

And the Seattle Post-Intelligencer's Joel Connelly has filed another fine column on I-1033, this time zeroing in on the havoc Eyman's scheme would wreak on our already strained public schools:
At-risk kids at Redmond High School have seen class sizes go up, students pay to play sports ($300) and even get charged a lab fee in chemistry, and teachers scrap planning periods in order to tutor students.

The state's public schools -- Redmond's are among our most innovative -- are enduring a life of gradually deepening cuts: The Washington Legislature passed a recession budget that sliced billions out of education.

At an after work session Tuesday night with half-a-dozen Redmond teachers, I learned the how's and why's of a new worry -- Initiative 1033 on this November's ballot.
The whole column is definitely worth a read.

Support for NO on I-1033 also continues to grow online as hundreds more become fans of the campaign on Facebook by the day. You can too - just head on over to Facebook, sign in, and click the link to Become a Fan.

Beating Initiative 1033 won't be easy. Tim Eyman has done all he can to ensure his cunning and deceptive arguments and ingrained into the public consciousness. But it's not too late for us to reframe the debate and tell the untold story of I-1033's consequences to friends and family. We've got a week until ballots drop.

The time has come to go all in and let every citizen of Washington State know: Vote NO on Tim Eyman's Initiative 1033.


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