Update October 6th, 2015: I-732 now has 256,471 signatures! The campaign continues to surge toward 330,000 signatures but we still need you! Click on the News tab to read our weekly email update (sign up here, no spam we promise), click on the Take Action tab to volunteer for the campaign if you are in Washington State, and click on the donate tab to help fund our grassroots campaign. Thank you!
What would Initiative 732 accomplish?
Initiative 732 is designed to move the state toward two important goals — cleaner energy and fairer taxes.
I-732 encourages greater use of clean and renewable energy by taxing carbon pollution and accelerating the adoption of renewable energy.
At the same time, I-732 will lower sales taxes. Washington has the most regressive tax code in the nation. People with the lowest incomes pay the greatest percentage of their income in taxes. I-732 would be a strong step towards making our tax code more progressive.
Here’s how it works:
I-732 will add a $25 a ton tax to polluting fossil fuels. This proven approach will give both companies and consumers the incentive to reduce their consumption of fossil fuels (including electricity generated by fossil fuels).
It’s based on a successful program that’s been in place in British Columbia since 2008. Carbon dioxide emissions have fallen by 10-15 percent, the economy is thriving, and the carbon tax swap is backed by both major political parties and by a strong majority of the electorate.
The plan is “revenue neutral.” Taxes raised from fossil fuels will be used to cut other taxes — so the total taxes paid in Washington will stay the same. Everyone will pay a little more for gasoline, and a little less for just about everything else.
I-732 will use revenue from the fossil fuel tax to reduce the state’s part of the sales tax from 6.5% to 5.5%. It may not sound like much, but the nickels and dimes you’ll save will add up fast.
By cutting the sales tax, I-732 will save the average household about $200 a year. Taxpayers statewide will save around $1.3 billion per year!
The federal Earned Income Tax Credit provides a tax rebate to low-income working people. Washington State approved a plan to partly match that federal rebate, but it was never funded.
I-732 would fund the Working Families Tax Rebate and boost the state match to 25%. That means hundreds of thousands of working families and individuals will receive tax relief of up to $1,500 a year.
Revenue from the fossil fuel tax will also reduce the manufacturing Business & Occupation Tax in Washington — from .44% of gross receipts to .001%.
This will help manufacturers continue to provide living-wage jobs across the state and stay competitive internationally. Steel mills in Seattle and fruit processors in Eastern Washington all will pay more for energy under I-732 — but they will pay less B&O taxes, and this will help them afford to keep jobs in Washington.
I-732 is a widely endorsed bipartisan solution that will cut pollution, reduce other taxes and create jobs. An analysis by REMI (Regional Economic Models, Inc.) predicts a carbon tax will benefit Washington’s economy. Their study says the tax changes in I-732 will create thousands of new jobs — and hundreds of millions of dollars in new economic activity. At the same time, carbon dioxide emissions will drop to well below 1990 levels. All without complex new regulations or costly new bureaucracies.
With your support, Washington will become a leader in fighting climate change. Our economy will benefit. Total taxes paid by individuals will stay just about even (and most low-income Washingtonians will be better off). And by reducing the regressive sales tax, we’ll make our tax code a bit more fair.
Who We Are:
Carbon Washington wasn’t founded by politicians or wealthy executives, it wasn’t created in high-rises, board rooms, or in Olympia. CarbonWA was created in classrooms and living rooms, by students, activists, academics, and concerned citizens. We realized we couldn’t wait any longer for someone else to address climate change, we realized we were the ones we had been waiting for all along. We believe that ordinary citizens have the power to change things, and we hope that you do too. Take a look at our team so far, and we hope that you will join us to say Yes on I-732!
Check Out – Carbon Taxes are Even Better Than You Think:
I-732 is Endorsed by many Civic and Business Leaders, including:
- Bill Finkbeiner, former Republican Senate Minority Leader
- Sharon Nelson, former UTC Commissioner, former Consumer Reports Board Chair
- Ron Sims, former 12 year King County Executive