The gears of Tim Eyman’s ini­tia­tive fac­to­ry appear to be spin­ning with full force once again fol­low­ing a major infu­sion of cash from two wealthy right wing devel­op­ers, new reports filed with the Pub­lic Dis­clo­sure Com­mis­sion show.

The cam­paign com­mit­tee for I‑1366, Eyman’s ini­tia­tive for 2015, report­ed that for Feb­ru­ary of 2015 (its first month of oper­a­tion), it raised a total of $452,444.04 (prin­ci­pal­ly from three sources) and spent $158,111.78.

(I‑1366, for those read­ers unaware, is a scheme to coerce the Leg­is­la­ture into pass­ing a con­sti­tu­tion­al amend­ment to require a two-thirds vote to raise rev­enue. It would wipe out $1 bil­lion a year in fund­ing for schools and oth­er vital pub­lic ser­vices if the Leg­is­la­ture does­n’t pass such an amend­ment by April of 2016.)

$150,000 of the near­ly half a mil­lion the com­mit­tee raised is a pre­vi­ous­ly-report­ed loan tak­en out by Tim Eyman against his home to fund the ini­tial weeks of the sig­na­ture dri­ve for I‑1366, which remains underway.

A fur­ther $100,000 came from Belle­vue devel­op­er Kem­per Free­man, Jr., who ranks num­ber sec­ond on the list of Tim Eyman’s top ten all-time wealthy bene­fac­tors, behind only the late Michael Dun­mire, an invest­ment banker. Free­man has a long his­to­ry of giv­ing to Eyman, but has­n’t writ­ten a check this big to him since 2012.

And then there’s a $150,000 dona­tion from a new wealthy bene­fac­tor, exact­ly match­ing the amount of mon­ey Eyman bor­rowed against his home: Devel­op­er Clyde Hol­land of Van­cou­ver, Washington.

Data: Pub­lic Dis­clo­sure Com­mis­sion | Chart: North­west Pro­gres­sive Institute

Hol­land is the CEO of Hol­land Part­ners, which appears to con­sist of sev­er­al relat­ed firms. One, Hol­land Devel­op­ment, calls itself “a pre­mier devel­op­er of core urban infill res­i­den­tial and mixed-use tro­phy com­mu­ni­ties with a dis­ci­plined focus on high bar­ri­er-to-entry mar­kets that appeal to the ris­ing cre­ative class.”

The Ore­gon­ian pro­filed Hol­land in 2013 and had this to say about him:

Clyde Hol­land spent much of his child­hood packing.

Nine­teen moves in 17 years will teach a young man a lot: how to build con­nec­tions, devel­op rela­tion­ships, make friends quick.

Today, the 53-year-old Air Force brat and real estate devel­op­er is firm­ly root­ed in the North­west and seems to have it all.

A dream house on 20 acres in Clark Coun­ty, projects and region­al offices in Seat­tle, Den­ver and Los Ange­les, satel­lite oper­a­tions in Phoenix and North­ern California.

Thir­teen years after leav­ing the nation­al devel­op­ment firm Tram­mell Crow Com­pa­ny to start Hol­land Part­ners Group, he has $2.5 bil­lion in projects in devel­op­ment across the West and employs 700 workers.

“Our focus is on how much val­ue can we cre­ate,” Hol­land said of his firm and its philosophy.

Hol­land’s phi­los­o­phy of cre­at­ing val­ue evi­dent­ly does­n’t extend to pol­i­tics, or he would­n’t have agreed to become Tim Eyman’s newest wealthy benefactor.

Eyman is all about destroy­ing val­ue — whether that’s sab­o­tag­ing our Con­sti­tu­tion, attack­ing our cher­ished tra­di­tion of major­i­ty rule, wip­ing out fund­ing for our vital pub­lic ser­vices, spread­ing mis­in­for­ma­tion, or pol­lut­ing our polit­i­cal dis­course. Run­ning ini­tia­tives to wreck gov­ern­ment is the only thing he does.

Hol­land has giv­en to Eyman once before, PDC data shows, but that was a dona­tion of just $500, made on March 17th of last year to Eyman’s failed I‑1325, which did­n’t make the bal­lot. (I‑1366 is near­ly iden­ti­cal to I‑1325). Eyman has now per­suad­ed him to give three hun­dred times more than what he gave last year.

PDC reports list the date of Hol­land’s con­tri­bu­tion as hav­ing been received on Feb­ru­ary 20th, 2015, ten days after Eyman announced he was tak­ing out the loan. Like­ly Eyman secured a promise from Hol­land to write a big check pri­or to tak­ing out the loan. In the past, every sin­gle time Eyman has bor­rowed against his home, his loans have been repaid thanks to con­tri­bu­tions from wealthy benefactors.

A search of the PDC data­base reveals that Hol­land has been active in Repub­li­can Par­ty cir­cles as a major giv­er since 2012.

He has writ­ten checks to the Wash­ing­ton State Repub­li­can Par­ty, the Repub­li­can cau­cus cam­paign com­mit­tees, Rob McKen­na, Don Ben­ton, Ann Rivers, Lyn­da Wil­son, Jan Angel, Liz Pike, and Ed Orcutt.

The Wash­ing­ton State Repub­li­can Par­ty also received a large con­tri­bu­tion from him last month, in the amount of $40,000. That was received Feb­ru­ary 2nd, 2015.

A pre­vi­ous con­tri­bu­tion Hol­land made to the WSRP last year is the sub­ject of a com­plaint filed with the Pub­lic Dis­clo­sure Com­mis­sion by for­mer State Sen­a­tor Al Bauer. Bauer alleged that after max­ing out to Repub­li­can Clark Coun­ty Coun­cil can­di­date Jeanne Stew­art, Hol­land and anoth­er major Repub­li­can donor ille­gal­ly fun­nelled mon­ey through the state Repub­li­can Par­ty to her can­di­da­cy.

Hol­land’s com­pa­ny is present­ly devel­op­ing a new res­i­den­tial tow­er in Seat­tle, Pre­miere on Pine, which will be locat­ed at Ninth Avenue and Pine Street.

Hol­land is most like­ly the “suc­cess­ful busi­ness­man” Eyman has been talk­ing about in his most recent emails to his fol­low­ers, in which he says that any dona­tion made to the I‑1366 cam­paign this month will be matched, dol­lar for dollar.

From Eyman’s March 2nd, 2015 email:

Thank­ful­ly, we’ve been giv­en a tremen­dous oppor­tu­ni­ty to max­i­mize this mon­th’s effort: one of our sup­port­ers — a suc­cess­ful busi­ness­man — has offered to match dol­lar-for-dol­lar all dona­tions our sup­port­ers give dur­ing the month of March.

So your $10 dona­tion will be matched by him, result­ing in $20 total to the cam­paign. Your $100 will be matched by him, result­ing in $200 total to the cam­paign. $1000 is worth $2000. $5000 is worth $10,000.

What­ev­er amount we receive from all of you will be matched by him. It’s a very gen­er­ous offer and an even greater oppor­tu­ni­ty for the cam­paign. Please max­i­mize your sup­port for I‑1366 by con­tribut­ing this month.

This isn’t the first time Tim Eyman has spear­head­ed a match­ing cam­paign like this to spur his less-wealthy fol­low­ers to donate… he did it years ago with Dun­mire, too.

Assum­ing Eyman is not lying to his sup­port­ers (some­thing he’s done plen­ty of times) and assum­ing Hol­land is the “suc­cess­ful busi­ness­man” Eyman’s talk­ing about, then it seems he’s pre­pared to open his check­book again to keep the gears of Eyman’s ini­tia­tive fac­to­ry lubri­cat­ed with money.

Eyman will need more of Hol­land’s mon­ey. His­to­ry has shown that when he does­n’t have a wealthy bene­fac­tor, he does­n’t get on the bal­lot. He needs rich peo­ple like Free­man and Hol­land to write him mul­ti­ple six fig­ure checks every year so that he can stay rel­e­vant. Oth­er­wise his fac­to­ry sput­ters to a halt.

The last time Eyman ran a suc­cess­ful sig­na­ture dri­ve was in 2012; when he qual­i­fied I‑1185 and I‑517 as ini­tia­tives to the peo­ple and the Leg­is­la­ture, respectively.

(I‑517 appeared on the bal­lot in 2013, where it was over­whelm­ing­ly reject­ed. The I‑517 cam­paign com­mit­tee remains under inves­ti­ga­tion by the Pub­lic Dis­clo­sure Com­mis­sion for seri­ous vio­la­tions of the state’s pub­lic dis­clo­sure laws.)

Based on what I’ve read of Hol­land so far, he does­n’t strike me as the kind of per­son who would be care­less with his mon­ey. But by shelling out big bucks to Tim Eyman, that is exact­ly what he is doing. Is Hol­land not aware that Eyman has a his­to­ry of lying to his donors and using their mon­ey for his own per­son­al use or for oth­er projects? Or is he giv­ing to Eyman in spite of that knowledge?

Either way, this is an incred­i­bly trou­bling development.

But it’s not one that sur­pris­es us. Hav­ing fought Tim Eyman for over thir­teen years, we know he’s a first-rate snake oil sales­man. He’s very good at con­ning and dup­ing peo­ple. That’s why we’ve been expect­ing that a new wealthy bene­fac­tor for his ini­tia­tive fac­to­ry might emerge. Now we have evi­dence that that’s happened.

As we announced last month, we have already begun orga­niz­ing oppo­si­tion to I‑1366, under the assump­tion Eyman will be able to buy his way onto the ballot.

We are grate­ful to the King Coun­ty Democ­rats, 30th Dis­trict Democ­rats, 45th Dis­trict Democ­rats, and 32nd Dis­trict Democ­rats for mov­ing quick­ly to take posi­tions against I‑1366. Many more orga­ni­za­tions will be join­ing the coali­tion in the weeks to fol­low, and we look for­ward to work­ing with them to build an effec­tive cam­paign against I‑1366, Tim Eyman’s most destruc­tive ini­tia­tive to date.

About the author

Andrew Villeneuve is the founder and executive director of the Northwest Progressive Institute, as well as the founder of NPI's sibling, the Northwest Progressive Foundation. He has worked to advance progressive causes for over two decades as a strategist, speaker, author, and organizer. Andrew is also a cybersecurity expert, a veteran facilitator, a delegate to the Washington State Democratic Central Committee, and a member of the Climate Reality Leadership Corps.

Adjacent posts

One reply on “Meet Tim Eyman’s new wealthy benefactor: Developer Clyde Holland of Holland Partners”

  1. This sounds like the most dan­ger­ous Eyman ini­tia­tive yet. What can I do to help oppose it?

Comments are closed.