AG Ferguson

SEATTLE (AP) — The Washington State Attorney General’s Office is asking the state Supreme Court to allow voter-approved car-tab tax cuts to take effect this week, despite a lower-court ruling putting the cuts on hold.

The Seattle Times reports the state filed an emergency motion Monday saying Washington voters’ wishes are being “stymied” by a King County Superior Court judge’s decision to stop Initiative 976 from taking effect while a legal fight over the initiative’s constitutionality plays out.

Voters last month approved I-976, the statewide measure that calls for lowering many vehicle registration fees to $30, rolling back car-tab taxes that fund Sound Transit and doing away with local car-tab fees. Much of the measure was set to take effect Dec. 5.

Seattle, King County and a handful of other groups sued, saying the measure is unconstitutional.

King County Superior Court Judge Marshall Ferguson sided with the groups last week,, temporarily blocking I-976 from taking effect but not yet ruling on the initiative itself.

In Monday’s filing, the Attorney General’s Office calls the lower court’s injunction “legally flawed” and says I-976 will “result in substantial savings to Washington vehicle owners.” Local governments like Seattle can use reserves or other taxes to make up for the losses they’ll suffer from car-tab cuts in the immediate term, the office argues.

At issue in the case has been the ballot title voters saw for I-976, written by the Attorney General’s Office. That language said I-976 would repeal, reduce or remove authority for certain vehicle taxes and limit annual car-tab fees to $30 “except voter-approved charges.” The initiative itself said only charges approved by voters after the measure took effect were exempted. The measure also would repeal cities’ authority to charge car-tab taxes regardless of whether they are voter-approved.

Seattle and others argue the title was misleading. The state counters that ballot titles can be general as long as they include enough information to prompt voters to look to the text of the initiative itself for details.

(10) comments

Cheburashka

Ah...So when the system works in the interest of Eastern Washington conservatives, they suddenly agree with it? Interesting...

Desert Dweller

Well the initiative passed by majority vote the least the Attorney General can do is defend the will of the people in court. Have you ever heard of due process?

Cheburashka

As I understand it, in Eastern Washington, due process consists of allowing the courts to look at any legislation that might conflict with the desires of the conservative minority in Washington,, but denying them access to any legislation that is questioned by liberal majority in Washington. And what happened here, despite all the conservative whining about what the lower court did, was due process. A court ruled, and that ruling was challenged by the AG. QED..

Desert Dweller

So if the system works in conservatives favor you have an issue with it. That's fine.

If I comment on the fact that the system is working you think I'm whining about when it doesn't?

Troll somebody else please

Cheburashka

Oh please.... Here are your responses to the court case, in chronological order:

Gotta love those coast liberals. They could screw up an anvil in a sandbox.

The liberal approach --- can't win the election --- take it to court.

Will of the people, don't mean much in this state. Will of King County is the whole deal.

Give Bob Ferguson some credit right here. At least they are going to run it through the system and see what comes of it. Don't forget to support your position!!

That's politics. Wish it was different but prodding the uninterested into motion is a big part of maintaining the will of the people. Don't forget to support your position!!

You whined about the "system" until it worked in your favor, and then you changed your attitude. You aren't hearing liberals whining about Ferguson's decision, are you? The system works. And it worked way back when you were complaining that liberals abuse it. "Using" the system isn't the same as "abusing" the system.

Desert Dweller

Well you can read, but you can't expect me to consider one judge overruling an election. The same as defense of the will of the people.

Cheburashka

Of course not. He ruled based on a lawsuit and was overruled by the AG. Due process. The system that you complained about as favoring King County obviously doesn't.

Eastside

The only reason he did this is because pressure from Restore Washington and many other phone calls!!

Desert Dweller

That's politics. Wish it was different but prodding the uninterested into motion is a big part of maintaining the will of the people. Don't forget to support your position!!

Desert Dweller

Give Bob Ferguson some credit right here. At least they are going to run it through the system and see what comes of it. Don't forget to support your position!!

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