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P.O. Box 40002 ∑ Olympia, Washington 98504-0002 ∑ (360) 902-4111 ∑



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FROM: Gary Locke, Governor
DATE: March 15, 2000
SUBJECT: Recent Superior Court Ruling on Initiative 695

Yesterday King County Superior Court Judge Robert H. Alsdorf ruled Initiative 695 unconstitutional. I fully expect that this ruling will be appealed to the State Supreme Court. The state will vigorously defend the constitutionality of the measure at each step of the process. The State Supreme Court has made preparations for an expedited hearing of Initiative 695 issues. In the mean time, the King County judge ordered that no change occur in the state car tax as a result of his ruling.

Following the passage of Initiative 695, I said that we in state government would implement Initiative 695 and we would not challenge it in court. My budget and the proposed legislative budgets provide money for the legal defense of Initiative 695.

At that time I also directed agencies to avoid any tax or fee action which violates the Initiative and stated that this administration was not proposing any tax increases to the voters this session. I am reconfirming that directive today. Until the Supreme Court makes a final determination on the tax and fee provisions of the Initiative, and we have had an opportunity to respond the Court’s decision, your agencies should not consider any new fee proposals.

Thank you for your cooperation in this matter.