OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) -- Initiative promoter Tim Eyman is pushing a new measure that would cut billions of dollars from the state budget unless the Legislature moves forward with a constitutional amendment that would make it harder for lawmakers to raise taxes.
Eyman proposed the new initiative yesterday. The proposal would reduce the state sales tax by a penny, cutting state sales tax from 6.5 percent to 5.5 -- about $1 billion a year in lost revenue. Under the measure, the tax cut could be avoided if the Legislature advances a constitutional amendment to the ballot that requiring a two-thirds vote to approve new taxes.
The measure is in response to a state Supreme Court ruling last year that found requiring a two-thirds vote in the Legislature to raise taxes is unconstitutional. The court said that a constitutional amendment would be needed to put in place such a restriction.