House passes school levy bill; EFF comments
The supermajority requirement was established as a safeguard for property owners, since levy dollars come from property taxes. Special elections are expensive and easy to manipulate when only a simple majority is required.
The people who want to change the levy elections to a simple majority argue that members of Congress and the legislature are elected with a simple majority: Why not school levies, they ask? But those same people will not agree to move the levy election to November when Congress and state lawmakers run for office. Voter turn-out is largest in November, and it would cost far less to put a levy election on the same ballot.
"If lawmakers and school officials want to pass levies with a simple majority during 'special' elections alone, only property owners should vote during that election, " said Lynn Harsh, executive director of the Evergreen Freedom Foundation. "Besides, every time a property tax rollback is on the ballot, it passes. What is it lawmakers don't understand about the sentiments of property owners?"
The current bill maintains a supermajority requirement for school construction bonds.
Here is the Roll Call on the vote....
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