Washington Carbon tax seems to have enough signatures to make ballot

Source: By Jeff Mapes, Portland Oregonian • Posted: Friday, December 4, 2015

A carbon tax proposal appears to have collected enough signatures to qualify for the ballot in Washington state in 2016.

The proposed carbon tax would be used to lower other taxes.

Climate activists said they have gathered enough signatures to send the proposal to Washington’s Legislature and then to the 2016 ballot if lawmakers fail to enact the plan. Lawmakers failed to pass a cap-and-trade bill promoted by Gov. Jay Inslee (D) earlier this year (Greenwire, July 15).

The carbon tax proposal, sponsored by the group Carbon Washington, would cut Washington’s sales tax by 1 percentage point and offer a tax credit of as much as $1,500 for low-income families. It also would reduce taxes for manufacturing companies.

The carbon tax, meanwhile, would be expected to generate around $1.7 billion each year. The tax would raise the price of gasoline and fossil fuels and electricity that comes from sources that create carbon emissions (Jeff Mapes, Portland Oregonian, Dec. 2). — SP