This week’s news:
- Governor Inslee is testifying this morning (Tuesday) in favor of a climate action study bill. (At its core is a proposal for the state to commission a rigorous review of carbon reduction policies in other states and provinces.) Please contact your state legislators and encourage them to support the bill!
- In transportation news: Sightline’s Eric de Place has a great post on what’s wrong with the House transportation bill. That bill is still alive in Olympia but it faces increasingly long odds, including “strong voter opposition” according to a just-released Elway Poll. (The full poll results are here, and I can’t help but notice a parallel with climate: the public favors action but doesn’t want to pay for it.) Also worth reading is this Transportation Issues Daily post about unfair expectations regarding incoming WSDOT secretary Lynn Peterson.
- We’re hoping to make more progress in the weeks ahead on the transportation front, but also on the idea of linking carbon taxes to education funding (or to a 100% revenue-neutral tax reform). Stay tuned!
- In federal news, Senators Bernie Sanders and Barbara Boxer have a tax and dividend bill that is pretty awesome (but faces daunting odds given the gridlock in DC) and Sightline’s Anna Fahey has two good posts on polling and messaging: American Support for a Carbon Tax and Climate Message Essentials for All Six Americas.
Gotta keep the carbon tax simple. People don’t trust the complicated versions in polling. People want the revenue to pay for schools and for renewable energy research. That’s it. No payroll or B&O cuts. Close the budget gap. Pay for education. That’s a “future fee” for the kids who will have to live with and clean up our carbon mess. Leave the other taxes out of this deal. Or it starts to look like a crooked deal, suspiciously moving pots of money around. Yes, a rebate to rate payers but only a small one. Don’t sell people short. We want to do the right thing and that means we can’t create a tax that makes us richer.