Reduce Legislative Obstacles Preventing Proper Funding For Washington Schools

school bus

Target: Washington State Legislature

Goal: End the requirement of a two-thirds majority to raise revenue for education in Washington

Washington voters will soon decide whether to allow the “supermajority law” to continue as it has for the past twenty years. This law requires a two-thirds majority to pass legislation on raising revenue that goes towards education, making it nearly impossible for schools to gain the financial support they need. It is time to take a definitive stance on this issue which has been on the ballot every four years for two decades.

The Washington Supreme Court has ruled this year that the supermajority is unconstitutional, as is the creation of a referendum to be decided on by voters if a supermajority is not raised. The court found that a simple majority to raise taxes for education revenue is sufficient.

Supporters of the supermajority initiative up for vote argue that citizens must be given this opportunity to oppose tax increases. But the glaring truth, which citizens, educators and the Washington Supreme Court acknowledge, is that education in this state is in dire need of this revenue, and is entitled to it. Voters and legislators must realize that in order for the government to provide high quality services, taxes must increase.

Please vote against the supermajority this year, and request that like a number of other states, this issue be stated in the constitution. Since the court this year ruled the supermajority unconstitutional, it should not be continuously presented to voters as an opportunity to prevent tax increases. Reinstate a simple majority rule for education revenue, and support high quality schools in Washington.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Washington Legislators,

The requirement of a two-thirds majority to raise revenue for education has been a hurdle for Washington schools for many years now. After a Supreme Court ruling deemed the supermajority and voter approval law unconstitutional, it is on the ballot again, and in the hands of voters. It is time to prioritize the quality of our education and replace the supermajority with a simple majority standard.

The Washington Supreme Court also expressed that education is particularly suffering now, and will need significant support this year in order to provide quality teachers and curriculum that students require to succeed in school and in society.

Tim Eyman, the initiative’s sponsor argues that voters deserve a simple way to tell the state government that they don’t want taxes. But raising taxes is the only way schools are going to be able to meet their goals for improvement. Education matters for everyone in society. Without the opportunity to raise revenue for education, schools and students will fail.

Please consider the important findings and rulings of the supreme court, and vote to implement a simple majority so that our schools have the resources and support that they need to flourish.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: KDavidClark via Flickr

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58 Signatures

  • Eric von Borstel
  • Hermann Kastner
  • Marianne Oelman
  • Mal Gaff
  • Terrie Phenicie
  • Holly Hall
  • Jutta Taraniuk
  • Melanie waleski
  • Ricki Newman
  • Ricki Newman
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