We agree with the Olympian that Initiative 732’s energy tax is flawed. But we disagree that something is better than nothing when it comes to further reducing carbon emissions in Washington.
I-732 levies a hefty new tax on all the energy we use, and doesn’t invest in our state or economy.
Proponents tell us I-732 almost immediately increases the gas tax by 25 cents per gallon. What they won’t tell you is that 25 cents is on top of the 12 cents just passed to fund new mass transit, infrastructure, and alternative fuel programs — solutions that will actually cut carbon emissions. I-732’s gas tax doesn’t invest in anything.
Proponents also admit their energy tax will increase the cost of electricity and natural gas for every household and business in the state. As with all regressive taxes, increased costs on necessities such as heating and gasoline hit working people the hardest.
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Due to an error in the drafting process, I-732 cuts $800 million from the state budget. That’s nearly a billion dollars less for things we really need such as education, public safety and healthcare.
Proponents argue a small reduction in sales tax and a tiny decrease in some business taxes will offset the energy hikes. The truth is they don’t come close to balancing out. Just like the inadvertent $800 million state budget cut, proponents got their math wrong and put too much burden on working people and businesses.
I hope you will join us in voting no on I-732.