The 2016 Legislature convenes next week for a scheduled 60-day session. Legislators have a short must-do agenda, including preserving charter schools and adopting a supplemental budget (governor’s proposal here). An initiative to the Legislature to adopt a revenue-neutral carbon tax will most likely get little attention and go to the November ballot, where it will be joined by a not-so-revenue-neutral alternative and another initiative to the Legislature, a largely symbolic measure indicating displeasure with the Citizens United decision.
We’ve written before about the carbon measures. The Seattle Times reports on the two initiatives to the Legislature.
Backers of Initiative 732, which would impose a new state carbon tax while lowering other taxes, turned in about 100,000 signatures Wednesday to Secretary of State Kim Wyman’s office, bringing their total to more than 350,000.
Meanwhile, supporters turned in more than 325,000 signature for Initiative 735, which seeks to put Washington on record in support of a federal constitutional amendment overturning the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United ruling, which struck down a ban on corporate and union election spending.
A handful of lawmakers may also be considering the implications of Rep. Jim McDermott’s decision not to run for re-election.
McDermott’s announcement prompted swift speculation about candidates who might jump into the 7th District race.
In addition to Walkinshaw, several state legislators have been mentioned as possible candidates, including state Rep. Reuven Carlyle, D-Seattle, who said Monday he’s giving the race “serious reflection.”
There’s only so much that can be accomplished in a short session, particularly with a divided Legislature and major elections in the fall. But it’s not too much to expect that they can balance the budget, adopt a legislative fix to preserve charter schools, and possibly even indicate progress on the state Supreme Court’s call for a school funding plan.