Resolution to cut corporate tax breaks instead of cutting school funding or increasing sales taxes

Whereas the State Revenue shortfall for the current biennium is now about $2 billion and may rise to over $3 billion by June 2012 and

Whereas Governor Gregoire has proposed increasing the sales tax which would increase taxes on our poor and middle class by $500 million per year and

Whereas our State already has among the highest sales tax rate and the most unfair tax structure in the nation due to the regressive nature of the sales tax and

Whereas high sales tax rates also make it harder for local small businesses to compete with larger out of State businesses and

Whereas the voters have repeatedly rejected an increase in the sales tax by an average margin of 60% to 40% and

Whereas Governor Gregoire has also proposed $2 billion in cuts to our public schools, colleges, universities and other essential State Services and

Whereas firing thousands of teachers would harm the future of one million school children and

Whereas our State is already 47th in the nation in school funding as a percent of income and our children suffer from the third-most overcrowded classrooms in the United States; and

Whereas the “paramount duty” of the legislature according to our State Constitution is to provide adequate funding for our public schools; and

Whereas the legislature has already cut more than $2 billion in Education Funding in the past two years – while not a single penny has been cut in tax breaks for wealthy corporations; and

Whereas State tax exemptions for wealthy corporations cost our State billions of dollars every year; and

Whereas according to the 2008 Tax Exemption Report from the Washington State Department of Revenue, the cost of tax exemptions has risen from about $22 billion per year in 2000 to about $50 billion per year today and

Whereas the majority of these tax exemptions benefit the most wealthy citizens in our State and

Whereas continuing to give billions of dollars in tax exemptions to wealthy corporations while failing to adequately fund our public schools is contrary to our State Constitution, therefore be it

Resolved that we request our Washington State Legislative Representatives and Senators to sponsor legislation to protect schools from destructive budget cuts and protect working families from unfair tax increases by rolling back all corporate tax exemptions enacted since 1996.

Respectfully submitted by

David Spring M. Ed.,
5th LD Representative to the King County Democratic Party Central Committee

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