House Republicans oppose $1 billion property tax hike

Business Examiner


Olympia, WA - A plan offered by the superintendent of public instruction to raise Washington property taxes by nearly $1 billion has been rejected by House Republicans, who have vowed to fight the measure if it comes before the Legislature.

House GOP Leader Cathy McMorris says the plan, which would raise property taxes by $107 per year for every $100,000 in assessed valuation, would place a substantial burden on businesses and families already reeling from a sagging state economy.

"This would be the worst time to increase the burden on families and employers," says the Colville legislator. "We think the solution to solving our budget problem is to create jobs and prosperity for the citizens of this state. In the meantime, government needs to tighten its belt and show it's willing to share in the burden of these tough economic times by living within its means, just as families and businesses must do."

State schools chief Terry Bergeson suggested the tax increase proposal as a means for funding two education initiatives passed by voters, which will cost just over $1 billion in the next biennium. Meanwhile, budget writers are trying to make up a $2.4 billion shortfall in the state operating budget.


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