Rep. Mike Hope, R-Lake Stevens, today joined in a long-hard fight to protect voter-approved Initiative 960. Senate Bill 6130, which would repeal the two-thirds vote requirement of the Legislature to increase taxes, passed the House 51-47.
“The reason the voters supported this initiative was not because the economy was good at the time. Voters wanted us to protect their hard-earned tax dollars in good times and bad,” Hope said. “Today the majority Democrats told voters they know better. It proves the often-used saying, ‘No man’s life, liberty or property are safe while the Legislature is in session.’ This is exactly why people don’t trust their government anymore.”
In 2007, voters approved Initiative 960, by 56 percent in the 44th District. The initiative:
requires public notifications and 10-year cost projections when bills are introduced, heard and passed which increase taxes or fees; enforces and clarifies a two-thirds majority vote requirement of the Legislature, or a vote of the people, to increase taxes; requires notice to voters in the voters' pamphlet regarding actions by legislators that raise taxes; and requires an advisory vote from the public when taxes are increased. If the governor signs Senate Bill 6130 suspending this initiative, the second, third and fourth parts of the initiative listed above will be null immediately.
Hope said he was glad at least the transparency provisions of the initiative were kept intact so the public will be notified when tax and fee bills are introduced.
“Citizens deserve to know who is introducing tax and fee increases that take more from their wallets,” Hope said. “Parents, students, employers and employees are working hard to make ends meet and work for a better future. Removing the two-thirds vote requirement opens the floodgates not only for tax increases, but uncertainty, fear and instability.”