ELECTION 2019: Ballot measures

Tonight’s election also includes two statewide ballot measures and one for King County.

INITIATIVE 976 (car-tab taxes) – Results here

Update: 11:16 pm
Yes – 545,827 – 55.59%
No – 436,083 44.41%

REFERENDUM 88 (affirmative action) – Results here

(Update – 11:16 pm)
Yes – 461,367 – 48.55%
No – 489,017 – 51.45%

KING COUNTY PROP 1 (Medic One levy) – Results here (PDF)

Yes – 239,003 – 79.11 %
No – 63,123 – 20.89 %

(Looking for the other statewide measures? Results here.)

42 Replies to "ELECTION 2019: Ballot measures"

  • Quora November 5, 2019 (8:24 pm)

    Go 976 wahoooo!

    • Dan November 5, 2019 (9:44 pm)

      Timmy for Governor!

    • Olafur November 6, 2019 (1:57 pm)

      While there were certainly some issues with car tab fees, 976 was not the right solution and will cause far more problems than it resolves.  Tim Eyman is a leech who makes his living by pulling con jobs on the voting public and, quite frankly, we already have enough elected officials to con us and we don’t need an unelected, overgrown frat boy like Timmy to twist the knife.  His initiatives are the equivalent of an irresponsible, babysitting uncle asking your children whether they would like to have healthy food or nothing but ice cream for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  It’s easy for too many to make the choice that is attractive in the short term, but very bad in the long run.  I make it a point to always vote against Timmy, regardless of the initiative – #StopTimmy

  • TJ November 5, 2019 (9:08 pm)

    976 was a alley-oop to win. Way too much anger outside of Seattle for exorbitant car tabs. All of the typical commercials with people in hard hats predicting the end of the world if it passed weren’t going to change peoples minds this time. Time for the doom and gloom from the politicians, but in reality this is a good reality check for government to slow their roll on taxes and pinch some pennies to get things done 

    • drM November 6, 2019 (4:57 am)

       Way too much anger outside of Seattle for exorbitant car tabs

      Well, then maybe all those outside of Seattle should not bother coming here and using our facilities . It really upsets me that these “gummerment is bad” crowd have no problems using our roads, ferries and buses and expect them to be funded out of thin air. I thought we were better than that.

      • KM November 6, 2019 (8:14 am)

        …or having us subsidize their transportation.

      • TSurly November 6, 2019 (9:40 am)

        Furthermore, they have no problem taking handouts from the deep coffers of King County. I’d like to see legislation that keeps all of the money generated in King Co stay in King Co; let the conservative freeloading counties fund their own roads, schools, etc.

        • Jort November 6, 2019 (11:57 am)

          If poor, rural counties in Washington realized how much of a good deal they got from the state government, they’d likely shut up pretty quick about their poor hurt feelings around taxation. I actually don’t mind redistributing a little of Seattle’s wealth to other regions of the state. I really mind it when those counties take that money and then turn around and crap all over Seattle as thanks. If it weren’t for King/Pierce County money, Pend Oreille County would be an unmitigated flaming garbage pile in the corner of our state. 

    • There's That November 6, 2019 (9:49 am)

      Using the Skagit River bridge in the ads turned me off, because the collapse had nothing to do with maintenance. And the blind hipster chick in the other ads probably turned another group. Lots of other “conspiracy” things happened in the last couple of weeks – emergency road repairs, enhanced fare enforcement on buses (had never seen one until Saturday), and the list goes on.

  • Alkimark November 5, 2019 (11:14 pm)

    88 will fail after Snohomish and Pierce get counted….

  • Peter November 5, 2019 (11:21 pm)


  • Bradley November 6, 2019 (12:04 am)

    AWESOME. Voters sticking it to Sound Transit, Bob Ferguson, and Inslee.

    • RW November 6, 2019 (4:39 am)

      Voters absolutely stuck it to Sound Transit after ST stuck it to us. If they had just been honest and levied a fair and reasonable car tab rate increase instead of doubling/tripling what we car owners pay, then they wouldn’t be dealing with the irate backlash for which they only have themselves to blame. Voters passed the Sound Transit expansion, assuming ST would be honest. Instead we got price gouged with a phony tax calculation rate. I’ll be waiting for my refund from this year’s outrageous amount I was charged.

    • AMD November 6, 2019 (6:17 am)

      Voters sticking it to themselves by repealing car-rental taxes mostly paid by people who don’t live here, taking away Washington State Patrol funding, and putting limits on what they’re allowed to vote on in the future!  

    • Lagartija Nick November 6, 2019 (10:15 am)

      That’s just the thing, most of the people “sticking it to Sound Transit” live OUTSIDE of the taxing district and weren’t paying the tax, yet used that sentiment to guide their vote. I actually find it quite depressing that anyone would cheer for people voting to limit a different specific regions ability to tax themselves for the infrastructure they want. I would presume that you aren’t in favor of King County voters deciding what kinds of taxes the rest of the state can collect, so why would you be in favor of the rest of the state deciding that for us? I would like to see an initiative that any municipality or county that voted for 976 be ineligible to receive state money for their infrastructure, but that would be unconstitutional, right?

      • Bradley November 6, 2019 (7:57 pm)

        I’m a 30-year West Seattle resident. It’s unconstitutional and illegal at both the state and federal levels to deny equal funding ratios to all counties as punishment. The State and Sound Transit will simply need to find new funding sources for their transportation taxes without soaking drivers: increased sales taxes, property taxes, transit fares, gas tax, etc. The Sound Transit and Metro funding needs to be leveled-out so those who own vehicles pay less and those who don’t pay more. Simple.

        • Les Pantalons November 6, 2019 (8:40 pm)

          My friend, it would be 100% constitutional for Washington state to mandate that any revenues generated in a county be spent in that county. Counties and their citizens are not a protected class. 

  • Nigel November 6, 2019 (3:54 am)

    Actually drivers sticking it to property owners. Why do I have to subsidize car drivers just because I own a home. Car owners need to find their own roads. 

    • kosha November 6, 2019 (8:34 am)

      Because your home would be worthless without the road in front of it.

    • Nolan November 6, 2019 (8:58 am)

      If they make up the shortfall via gas taxation, drivers will finally appreciate how good they had it under the ST3 valuations.

    • Bradley November 6, 2019 (10:07 am)

      Why should us car (and home) owners pay for transit riders to get around? We already pay through the nose via our gas tax. Transit riders who aren’t low-income should pay a lot more in fares. The Sound Transit taxes should be funded with a sales tax so EVERYBODY pays.

      • Nolan November 6, 2019 (11:38 am)

        “Why should car owners pay for transit systems that take cars off the road and reduce congestion for the people who choose to drive anyways?”

        Hopefully, rephrasing your question will help you figure out the answer.

      • Ron Swanson November 6, 2019 (12:11 pm)

        Sound Transit *is* funded with a sales tax, in addition to property taxes and the departing MVET.  In fact, it’s where they get most of the revenue from.

        • Bradley November 6, 2019 (2:39 pm)

          It should be FULLY funded with sales and property taxes and fares should be raised significantly. Low-income car owners struggling to make ends meet shouldn’t be paying hundreds of dollars per year so a Belltown condo resident making $290,000 can ride the bus to his huge office for $3.

          • KM November 6, 2019 (10:31 pm)

            Bradley, why are you so eager to give low-income car owners a break, but call for regressive taxes elsewhere, which hurt low-income individuals the most? Why are you convinced that public transit only benefits those who ride it? I think you’ve stumbled on some bad information, because your replies aren’t making any sense.

  • craig November 6, 2019 (3:55 am)

    All that talk of light rail in W Seattle, squashed by a petty thief’s initiative 

    • Alex November 6, 2019 (8:17 am)

      There has been SO MUCH talk. We agonized over tunnel vs elevated, where the stations should be, etc. And now it turns out this is just the monorail all over again, a fantasy that will never happen. 

    • Peter November 6, 2019 (8:26 am)

      It’s not squashed. Sound Transit is still required by law to build out ST3. But it will take many, many more years and cost many, many billions more in financing costs.

    • No Name Calling Please November 6, 2019 (8:54 am)

      That’s not the case here. 

    • HS November 6, 2019 (10:07 am)

      I was just wondering if WS lost it’s light rail as a result.

      • WSB November 6, 2019 (10:12 am)

        The general consensus is that this will be challenged in the courts and like some past Eyman initiative(s) could well be overturned. So everything in the meantime is just speculation (as is that analysis, of course).

  • ss November 6, 2019 (5:09 am)

    They’ll tax you somewhere else.  Turn down any item on ballots that are approved without going to the voters.

  • Peter November 6, 2019 (10:07 am)

    I’m saddened to see how many people are gleeful about the reduced transit service and increased traffic congestion that will result form 967. Just remember when you’re stuck in traffic, that’s exactly what you voted for when you voted for 967. I’m sure we won’t hear any more complaining about traffic from those who voted for this, because I just know you’re not a bunch of selfish, short-sighted, hypocrites, right??

    • WS REZ November 6, 2019 (10:45 am)

      Amen, Peter. 

      • Elton November 6, 2019 (1:31 pm)

        Double Amen to Peter. That being said, King county voted by a more than 10% margin against 976. So as others pointed out – it’s eastern Washington folks who will only see the increased traffic on their occasional trips to the city who voted for it. As others said though – a reckoning was coming with the funny math they did in valuing people’s cars for the current (former?) car tab taxes. Anyway, get ready for an even less equitable tax structure to cover the SDOT budget shortfall we’re now going to be in.

  • Mj November 6, 2019 (11:11 am)

    Both Metro and Sound Transit could increase fairbox revenue to back fill some of the lost tax money.  

    • Jort November 6, 2019 (11:45 am)

      Yeah, that’s not going to happen. To raise $7 billion in 10 years you’d need to get an additional $1.9 million every single day from Sound Transit’s 157,000 daily riders, which would be a daily fare increase of $12 per passenger every single day for 10 straight years. So, yeah, no. That’s not going to happen.

  • WSB November 6, 2019 (11:31 am)

    I won’t be writing followups until today’s King County count is in, only another 3+ hours, but for anyone wondering – ST’s chair says the board will talk 11/21 about what’s next:

    Statement of Sound Transit Board Chair John Marchione on the passage of I-976
    Sound Transit Board Chair and Redmond Mayor John Marchione issued the following statement on the passage of the initiative:

    “At the next meeting of the full Sound Transit Board on Nov. 21 we will begin the process of responding to I-976. The Board will hear presentations from the agency’s finance staff as well as our general counsel. The Board will consider Sound Transit’s obligations to taxpayers who want their motor vehicle excise taxes reduced, as well as how to realize voters’ earlier direction to dramatically expand high capacity transit throughout the Puget Sound region.”

  • carole November 6, 2019 (11:49 am)

    I hope all those voters who supported Timmy’s latest initiative realize that Timmy doesn’t care about you and he doesn’t care about taxes.  All he cares about is putting out an initiative, any initiative, because that’s how he makes money.  He doesn’t have a real job.  He’ll keep rolling these out and making money from those foolish enough to send him their hard earned cash. It’s a con game to him.

  • BWD November 6, 2019 (11:57 am)

    You are so correct Peter and WS Rez.  The “roads should be free for car drivers/stick it to the transit riders” crowd will be the first to complain loudly and bitterly about traffic and substandard roads.    I have taken the bus for 30 years.   I pay taxes and pay the transit fee increases.   I don’t often complain except when the stench of entitlement is overwhelming.   

  • Mac November 7, 2019 (7:28 am)

    Elton your fact is wrong. King Co voted against 976.

    Yes 43.3.  No 56.7


    • Mac November 7, 2019 (12:16 pm)

      Elton you WERE correct. 

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