The following newsletter was sent to subscribers to Sen. Ericksen’s newsletter, Jan. 24, 2019. To subscribe to Sen. Ericksen’s newsletters, click here.
- Session runs through April 28
- Tax collections at record levels – yet urban lawmakers want even more
- Responsible spending and taxpayer relief will be central issues
We’ve just begun our 2019 session in Olympia, and already we can see what this year’s central issue will be – an effort to keep spending in check and provide relief to taxpayers.
We are expecting $5 billion more in tax collections than the last time the Legislature wrote a budget, two years ago. That’s more than enough to meet our needs, and cut taxes, too.
Unfortunately, the governor proposes spending every penny, and wants another $5 billion on top of that – a 22.4 percent increase in state spending in just two years. Big new taxes would pay for it, including an income tax on capital gains and a punishing 67 percent increase in taxes on service businesses. All of us would feel the impact when higher costs are passed along to consumers.
There is a better way. In coming weeks, I will present a plan to cut taxes and manage state spending sensibly. Our state’s good fortune came because previous legislatures managed the budget wisely and kept spending within our means. This allowed our economy to boom. Responsible spending means continued prosperity, in Whatcom County and across the state.
Time to give taxpayers a break
Since the Great Recession, our state economy has taken off like a rocket, and state tax collections have gone up to match. If current projections hold, we will see a nearly two-thirds increase in tax reciepts since 2013. It’s time we start thinking about giving some of that money back to the people who paid it.
In an op-ed published in the Tri-City Herald, “Revenue forecast shows it’s time for a sales tax cut,” the Washington Policy Center does a good job of explaining the facts and figures. But the real point is this. How many of you have seen a two-thirds increase in your income since 2013? More than any government program, Washington’s struggling working families deserve our support.
Here to serve you!
I was honored to take my oath of office Jan. 14 after Whatcom County voters returned me to office for another term. Your support has reaffirmed my efforts for sensible budgeting, sound environmental policies that build our economy, and energy policies that keep costs low and protect working families. With your help, we can continue building a bright future for Whatcom County. If you have a concern with state government or a problem with a state agency, I hope you will contact my office. We are here to serve you.
Jason Mercier in Tri-City Herald: “There’s no debate: A capital gains tax is an income tax”
KIRO radio: “Cato Institute: Inslee’s budget will scare away startups”
John Carlson in Seattle Times: “A Republican agenda for Washington state”
Walla Walla Union-Bulletin: “Another dam study? Give us a break”
The (Vancouver) Columbian: “Keep a lid on it – Unsustainable deals in school districts require accountability, not a bailout”
Phone: (360) 786-7682
Mail: P.O. Box 40442, Olympia, WA 98504