Some good developments!
- Last week I was invited to talk carbon taxes with the Conservation Committee of the Cascade Chapter of the Sierra Club. The idea of a revenue-neutral carbon tax received a vote of support (unanimous, if I recall correctly) and a task force was created to come up with recommendations for getting a carbon tax passed. Great news, stay tuned for more!
- I submitted ballot language for a revenue-neutral proposal to see what kind of ballot title would come out of it, and here’s the result: “This measure would impose a greenhouse gas emissions tax on certain fossil fuels, reduce the state sales tax one percentage-point, eliminate the business and occupation tax on manufacturers, and increase certain tax credits.” More details on the bill itself (PDF, Word) and on the ballot title and summary.
- Governor Inslee signed into law a study bill that will evaluate ideas like BC’s carbon tax and report back in October 2013.
- A good op-ed in the Wall Street Journal from Nobel-winning economist Gary Becker and George Shultz: “Why We Support a Revenue-Neutral Carbon Tax”. (Last I checked this article was not gated, although the WSJ often is.)
- We’re shifting focus towards a revenue-neutral option and away from a transportation option, but as a last-ditch effort of sorts on the transportation front Clark Williams-Derry of Sightline and I wrote a post on “How To Fix the Washington Transportation Package”.
- PS. Some earth day talks coming up at Edmonds Unitarian Universalist Church (Sunday April 21), Plymouth Forum at Plymouth UCC in Seattle (Sunday April 21), Seattle University (T April 23), Bellevue College (Th April 25), and Yakima (May 2). Holler if you want details or want to help out!
That looks great. I like the switch to a revenue neutral model.
A comment sent via email (to which I don’t have an immediate answer): A question after a quick read of the bill: Should “fossil” fuels be defined? Would synthetic carbon fuels, newly generated methane and alcohol-based carbon fuel producers claim they are not “fossil” fuels?
I can understand the appeal of devoting the revenue to transportation, but I fear that unless the revenue is devoted entirely and completely to paving and asphalt (with none of those darn bike paths!) it will be seen as “just another tax increase” and be voted down, almost semi-automatically.
If “reduce sales tax” is in the actual ballot title, I think the chances of ultimate approval by voters would be significantly improved.