The Secretary of State had announced that the following ballot measures have qualified for the general election in November. As you will see, AGC has already take positions on a couple of the ballot measures.
Initiative 732 — Carbon emission tax (AGC’s Position: Oppose)
This measure would impose a carbon-emission tax on the sale or use of certain fossil fuels and fossil-fuel-generated electricity, at $15 per metric ton of carbon dioxide in 2017, and increasing gradually to $100 per metric ton (2016 dollars adjusted for inflation), with more gradual phase-in for some users. It would reduce the sales-tax rate by one percentage point over two years, increase a low-income sales tax exemption, and reduce certain manufacturing taxes.
Initiative 735 — Propose amendment to the federal constitution
This measure would urge the Washington State congressional delegation to propose a federal constitutional amendment clarifying that constitutional rights belong only to individuals, not corporations; that spending money is not free speech under the First Amendment; that governments are fully empowered to regulate political contributions and expenditures to prevent undue influence; and that political contributions and expenditures must be promptly disclosed to the public. The measure would urge the legislature to ratify such an amendment.
Initiative 1433 — Concerns labor standards (AGC’s Position: Oppose)
Summary: This measure would increase the state hourly minimum wage for employees who are at least 18 to $11.00 in 2017, $11.50 in 2018, $12.00 in 2019, and $13.50 in 2020. The measure would require employers to provide paid sick leave starting in 2018 that employees could use in certain circumstances, including to care for family members (as defined); make the Minimum Wage Act and this measure apply to individual care providers, and adopt related laws.
Initiative 1464 — Government Accountability Act 1 – Concerns Elections and Lobbying Accountability of Washington
This measure would create a state-funded campaign-finance program allowing residents to direct up to three $50 contributions to candidates for certain state offices. It would repeal the non-resident sales-tax exemption, directing resulting funds to this program. It would restrict lobbying employment by certain former public employees; restrict campaign contributions from lobbyists and state contractors; increase penalties for campaign-finance violations; increase campaign-finance administration and enforcement; and revise campaign-finance and disclosure laws.
Initiative 1491 — Extreme-Risk Protection Orders
This measure would authorize courts, upon petition by police or a “family or household member,” to issue an “extreme-risk protection order” to prevent an individual from accessing firearms for a specified time period, if the court finds that the individual poses a significant danger of causing personal injury to himself or others with a firearm. Temporary ex parte orders could be issued where there is sufficient evidence of significant danger in the near future.
Initiative 1501 — Concerns Seniors and Vulnerable Individual Protection
This measure would increase penalties for criminal identity theft and civil penalties for consumer fraud when persons over sixty-five or vulnerable individuals are targeted. It would exempt certain information, including names, addresses and other personally identifying information, of vulnerable individuals and in-home caregivers for vulnerable populations from public disclosure. It would also prohibit the state and state agencies from releasing certain information of vulnerable individuals and in-home caregivers of vulnerable populations except in limited situations.
During the next several months, you will hear more on ballot measures on which AGC has or will be taking a position. If you have any questions on these ballot measures, call AGC’s Legislative Office at 360.352.5000.