Appeals Court rejects offer to reconsider controversial Seattle income tax opinion.

On second thought, they liked their first thought. The state Appeals Court has rejected a motion for reconsideration of its controversial Seattle income tax opinion. (More background here.)

It is a terse rejection, reminiscent of Ring Larnder’s classic, “Shut up, he explained.”

Here it is:

Respondents Levine and Burke filed a motion for reconsideration of the opinion filed July 15, 2019. The panel requested and received answers from appellants City of Seattle and Economic Opportunity Institute. The panel also accepted a reply from Levine and Burke, who requested oral argument. The panel has determined that the motion for reconsideration and the request for oral argument be denied.

Now therefore, it is hereby

ORDERED that respondents Levine and Burke’s motion for reconsideration is denied. It is further

ORDERED that the request for oral argument is denied.

TJ Martinell reports for The Lens,

The brief offered by the plaintiffs was compiled by legal counsel that included a former state supreme court justice, associate justice and state attorney general. Seattle is expected to now appeal the July decision to the state’s high court.

“These income tax games in Washington are giving Michael Myers a run for his money for being the most diabolical horror franchise,” Washington Policy Center Government Reform Director Jason Mercier said. “This is not the way to amend the Constitution. You’ve got the (amendment) process to do it.”

Mercier’s observation is particularly appropriate for the Halloween Day rejection.

The stakes are high, as Martinell writes. Noting that the city says one reason for the local income tax is to fund programs related to homelessness. But…

However, others see the ordinance and subsequent lawsuit as an opportunity to get a case in front of the state high court, which would allow them to reconsider an 80-year legal precedent that income is property as defined by the Washington state constitution.

Next stop: the state high court. We’ll see.