This fall, Washington will be voting on yet another anti-tax Tim Eyman initiative that would require a 2/3rds majority vote of the Legislature to raise revenue. Similar initiatives have been approved by voters twice in the past, although the 2/3rds majority requirement has been ruled unconstitutional by the King County Superior Court and will be ruled on by the State Supreme Court this fall.
Which begs the question, what do you think of when you hear the word taxes? What do you think of when you hear that the government wants to raise taxes? I used to think of rich, old white men (Willard Mitt Romney-esque) with suits made of $100 bills smoking cigars scheming of ways to become even more unnecessarily rich.
But, after some time working closely with the Seattle public school system I got an eye opening realization of what taxes pay for. Taxes pay for teacher salaries and supplies and resources offered within public schools. Without this necessary funding schools cannot perform. I’ve walked into high schools where classrooms have empty bookshelves except for a few dictionaries and thesauruses. Classrooms across the state will continue to suffer if we cannot find the proper amount of revenue to alleviate the situation.
This tax initiative won’t just effect the education of students in Seattle, but it will also make it extremely difficult to raise money for other crucial services. Many people will lose basic health coverage and senior citizens may have to pay more out-of-pocket for their prescription drugs. Road maintenance will suffer, and cities won’t be able to hire enough police and firefighters.
No one likes to pay taxes. But it’s a necessary expense for the quality of life we expect to live as citizens of this great country. Understand what this money is used for. Eyman’s potentially unconstitutional 2/3rd’s initiative is a true barrier to progress and many communities in Washington State will feel its impact.
Watch Fuse’s very own Iron Jim Dawson go toe to toe with Tim “Agree to Disagree” Eyman himself a few years back. Anyone recognize the voice of the mysterious cameraman?