By Martha Koester and Steve Butts
Robert Dickinson of the Sound Alliance (a coalition of labor, environmental and other organizations) has set up another coalition All In For Washington, dedicated to raising state revenue to fully fund education without sustaining cuts to other essential services. Their current efforts are devoted to enacting a capital gains tax (WA State is one of only nine states not to have one) which would apply to earnings over $50K, with income from a sale of a primary residence exempted. The B&O tax is highly regressive, penalizing small businesses the most, as is the sales tax. See http://www.allinforwa.org/ for more information.
Rich Erwin congratulated all of the people who helped with voter contact. We won two house seats in the 30th LD and a senate seat in the 41st LD, retained our senate seat in the 5th LD and came close in the house races. The KCDCC reorganization will take place on December 5th at the South Park Machinists Hall. Rich is running for reelection. He requested help for running the meetings which will be necessary to replace our legislators in the 43rd, the 37th and the 48th LDs.
Mary Wirta thanked all who participated in PCO and VoteBuilder use trainings this year, and brought some food to share in their honor.
The WSDCC reorganization will take place the last weekend of January. Ann Martin is running for her position again. Javier Valdez has stepped down after serving in this position for 16 years. Chad Lupkes of the 46th LD announced his intention to run for the position.
The Resolutions Committee presented a Resolution of Opposition to the Dakota Access Pipeline and Resolution Supporting the Protection of Standing Rock Sioux Lands. Both were passes, the latter with minor modifications.
The Elections Committee reported a big increase in the number of qualified elections observers. We now have 57, and still more people want to take the training that will be offered in January. There were more than a million ballots cast in King County this year.
The Legislative Action Committee sought approval by the body of its 2017 legislative agenda (available at https://www.kcdems.org/tag/draft-2017-legislative-agenda/. This embodies some changes from 2016, removing items that were passed as legislation with some additions. The agenda was approved with minor modification. Lobby Day will be over Presidents Day as usual. After the first of the year, the committee will submit an amended agenda with actual bill numbers attached.
The Finance Committee reported that we raised $78K this year.
The treasurer reported a balance of $6700, after candidate expenditures. These went over the $25K limit due to last minute donations by the trial lawyers to support Justice Wiggins. A resolution to amend the approval process to deal with such emergencies in the future passed unanimously.
Under new business, it was proposed that we send a message to the Clinton campaign to challenge the vote count in MI, WI and PA. This passed unanimously.