Tomorrow is election day. If you haven’t mailed your ballot (making use of the free return postage) or a ballot drop box, do so right now. The deadline to drop ballots at the drop boxes is 8 pm Tuesday. Mailed ballots must be post-marked Tuesday. If you don’t mail it tonight, get thee to a ballot drop box.

Review the STB Editorial Board’s endorsements, if you like. You can also peruse King County’s online voter guide.

Chinook Building
Credit: King County

Accessible voting centers (which are open to all voters) will be open until 6 pm tonight and 8 pm Tuesday. Check the hours at each site. Seattle’s accessible voting center has moved to the Chinook Building at 401 5th Ave, room 124, between Terrace St and Jefferson St. It will open at 8:30 am today and tomorrow. If you aren’t already registered to vote, you can register in person at any of these voting centers, and then proceed to cast your ballot.

You can also make use of the online ballot marking program.

No excuses. No more poll tax. No more registration waiting period. Get it done.

68 Replies to “Last call to mail or drop off ballots”

  1. It’s so bizarre how many people don’t vote here. This is by far the easiest place to vote I’ve ever seen, if anyone has a better example I’d be amazed. Even when traveling I’ve been able to print my ballot along with a pre-paid stamp and mail it from anywhere – someone told me recently the state let them return it by email. Yet we still have only 50% voting (and some important demographics are significantly below that).

    It appears right now the biggest barrier is registering people. We need to work on making automatic voter registration a reality.

    1. I would expect the biggest barrier is apathy and the feeling, misguided as it is, that voting is pointless and ineffective. People have to want to register to vote.

    2. I’ve gotten the feeling that registration or lack of it comes down to family. aka if your parents are registered you’re all but certain to be registered in the future but if your family isn’t then you will likely never will be either.

      The best suggestion I’ve seen is that your High School register you since most of us will turn 18 while we’re in school.

      1. I imagine the vast majority of high schoolers have some form of state ID so the state already knows when they turn 18. I was registered automatically for selective service upon my 18th birthday, why not voting?

    3. Fake news. Washington is in the fourth quartile.

      Comment section! Wake up! Don’t just dumbly nod your head when you read something. Do your own homework.

      1. We can obviously still do better than ~50% voter participation, Sam… Did you always aspire to 50% success rate? Would definitely explain a lot.

      2. Washington State has higher voter turnout than 3/4 of the country. So when you say it’s bizarre how many people don’t vote here, you’re suggesting this area is worst than most, and that’s simply not true.

      3. I said it’s bizarre so many people don’t vote when it could not possibly be any easier. That’s what I said, Sam.

    4. Even though there are several about a block or two of Link station entrances, having drop boxes actually at an entrance would encourage transit riders to vote. Riders would see the drop box every time they exit or enter their station. With 80,000 riders every day (expected to more than double by 2025), this could really increase participation.

      1. Every single mailbox in the county is a ballot drop box location. If people aren’t bothering to vote at this point I don’t know how to change their minds aside from physically holding their hand through the process.

      2. I’m hard-pressed to find mailboxes at station entrances too. Still, a big drop box for voting would remind every rider to vote each time they see it.

        It flummoxes me how any transit advocate would accept anything less than a drop box at at least 3-6 station entrances. I hope that lack of boxes doesn’t doom I-976.

      3. Capitol Hill Station has one near the entrance. It’s not directly at it but it’s close enough for a 30-second detour to drop the ballot in.

    5. There’s a difference between relative and absolute voter turnout. If the top state in the county only has 67% turnout, then that means a full third of registered or eligible voters aren’t actually voting. And if that bloc of voters all voted the same way, it would be enough to swing most elections. So Washington might be good compared to most other states, but we can do a lot better in an absolute sense.

      There’s also the question why so many people aren’t registered. Again, Washington is good in that we don’t have onerous requirements that some states have established to register and remain registered.

      I flat out had someone tell me they weren’t going to vote this year because they didn’t think it was important. When the top tier races on the ballot are city council and state initiatives, it’s easy for many people to ignore that election as unimportant.

    6. There are many reasons why people don’t vote
      • Voter Apathy
      • Voter Overconfidence
      • Voter Cynicism
      • Lack of Time To Vote
      • Lack of Access to Voting
      • Its On A Weekday Instead of the Weekend or National Holiday
      • People Forget
      I know some of these reasons dont make much sense, but humans are a fickle bunch and tend to capitulate on matters they feel aren’t important or feel as though their vote doesn’t matter in the grander scheme of things.

      1. Neither of these 3 apply to WA State.

        • Lack of Time To Vote
        • Lack of Access to Voting
        • Its On A Weekday Instead of the Weekend or National Holiday

      2. 1 and 3 are the biggest problem. People don’t think their vote counts or makes a difference, or they’ve just never voted so they don’t see the point. Liberals in particular have a low turnout, so that’s why their representatives and government policies don’t match their numbers.

      3. Neither of these 3 apply to WA State.

        • Lack of Time To Vote

        Sure they do. Just take that first one. You just moved here, from another state. You got your oldest into the local school and your youngest into day care. You have moved over your mail, you car registration, and most everything else. Then your oldest comes down with the flu. Your youngest is having trouble adjusting to the new day care. Your car just broke down, and it turns out, your new job isn’t what you thought it was. You are too busy with life to deal with changing your registration, and you miss it.

        Welcome to America, Zach. This is just one of a million stories of why people don’t vote, or don’t do things that seem rather simple, and obvious to the rest of us. Boyfriends, girlfriends, sick relatives, lost jobs, rent going up, or apartment being torn down. Rats in the front room, roaches in the back. Junkies in the alley with a baseball bat. I tried to get away but I couldn’t get far ‘Cause a man with a tow truck repossessed my car.

        (OK, I stole that last part from a great song). The point is, even when times are good (as they are now) they are tough — really tough — for a lot of people. They sometimes forget to sign a permission slip — just like they can’t find time to vote.

      4. I’m wondering if turnout isn’t as good as it could be because of new transplants that haven’t bothered to register, or haven’t had time to register, particularly if they work in high tech?

      5. The Capitol Hill ballot drop off box is overflowing with ballots. Turnout appears to be quite good this year, although we’ll have to wait and see the data.

  2. It is worth pointing out that Eyman’s previous $30 car tab initiative passed, in part, because turnout was a good
    10 points weaker in King County than in the rest of the state, in spite of King County bearing the brunt of the consequences.

    Granted, Washington State was not yet in vote by mail in 1999, but the point is, turnout matters. And, if this one is going to be voted down, it’s going to take a much stronger turnout in King County – particularly Seattle – to do it. If everyone in Seattle who voted against Trump 3 years ago votes against Eyman this time a around, that is what it would take.

      1. I agree.

        It’s time to take the fight to Timmy.

        I voted two long weeks ago. I wanted my vote counted on election night.

        The stakes are too high.

        It took twenty years to get here. Thirty nine tallies tomorrow at 8 PM cumulatively can undo all of it.

        We are on a precipice.


        We vote no on 976.

        Folks, do you care about getting ST3 done? Like your King County Metro bus service? Like the ideal of more electric buses? Support having the state help fund expensive paratransit? Support the state ferries system?

        Well… “Decisions are made by those who show up. ”

        GO VOTE NO ON 976 PLEASE!

      2. Damn. I wish we had readers of this blog who live outside of Seattle and cared about transit to knock on doors against 976.

      3. I agree with Joe that if Snohomish can’t get both Everett and Paine before the 2040s, it will reopen consideration of other alternatives. These are the possibilities I see:

        1. Everett only. Paine Field has a bus shuttle, and a train branch or shuttle is deferred to ST4. (If an ST4 is feasible without MVET.)

        2. Paine Field only. This is unlikely because it misses Snohomish County’s largest city and a major transfer station/P&R, and all those commuters from the north and going to the emerging Marysville industrial district. While Snohomish wants Paine Field for “jobs”, it may eventually recognize that Everett is where the housing and all-day demand is and where people can walk to a station.

        3. Truncation at 128th. This would be if neither Everett nor Paine is affordable. When Lynnwood Station opens in 2024, people will have experience taking feeders to it, and realize it’s immensely better than taking a bus to Seattle. That may temper their feeling that Everett/Paine is essential. ST will build out as far as it can afford to, and 128th is a convenient stopping place, and the planned terminus for the Blue Line (East Link). It’s a short shuttle ride from there to Paine Field or Everett, shorter than going to Lynnwood.

      4. I’d put a forth option on the table: self-propelled trains from Lynnwood or maybe Ash Way or Mariner — along with some single-track sections. These trains would actually have faster top speeds than light rail, compensating for the transfer time at the end of the electrified light rail station!

      5. Hmm, both BART and Toronto’s subway transfer to a different train mode for the furthest suburban extensions, so there’s a precedent for that. But I think eBART is using existing railroads, and Toronto is outside the US’s transit-funding limitations. Toronto also did something which seemed like a good idea at the time, but it’s now going to be scrapped in favor of extending the subway. In Everett/Paine’s case there’s no existing railroad so you’d have to build a new right of way. Are EMUs really better than wire-powered light rail, especially for those short segments, and especially when they’re far from the SODO railroad yards for maintenance?

      6. Well yes and no.

        Looking at the web site Permanent Defense it seems Eyman has been trying to get this on the ballot since 2016.

      7. EBART is entirely new track in the median of SR4. At one time, existing track was going to be used, but the connecting overpasses and usage costs were so great that it became easier to use the ground- level freeway median.

  3. While many of you were probably playing ookie cookie in your frat’s basement, I was busy studying polysci, one of my octuple majors. And what I learned is in the spectrum of world political ideologies (Communist, Liberal, Moderate, Conservative, Fascist), US moderate Democrats, and US moderate Republicans, are about a hair width apart, somewhere in the middle of that spectrum. In other words, in the scheme of things, there is no difference between our two main political parties.

    1. Literally what relevance does this have to the post or to anything anyone is saying in the comments? As usual, another total non-sequitur from Sam, STB’s perennial troll. If you were a decent troll you’d at least be funny.

      1. Sometimes he is funny.

        Actually, his point is that the candidates being so close together may explain why Americans don’t vote that often. My point is, such thoughts are out of date. Jimmy Carter beating Gerald Ford was not a huge deal, since both candidates were centrists (as were Clinton and Obama). But Trump beating Hillary Clinton was huge, as Hillary Clinton was quite a bit to the left of her husband (and Obama) while Trump is a right wing nationalist.

      2. Hillary won the popular vote by nearly 3 million. Only a handful of states were truly competitive. Here in Washington, though, activists still wasted their time making up stupid stuff about third party candidates to try to scare people into thinking they had to vote for Hillary or Donald. It seems like a large segment of the population are unaware of the Electoral College. And then, even major candidates this year have been scarely aware of the Compact to elect the president by popular vote, which currently stands at *196 of the 270 votes needed to go into effect, along with, potentially, a majority in each house in Congress for ratification to avoid a Supreme Court case over its constitutionality.

        Meanwhile, Maine will be the first state to use ranked choice voting in the general election for President. Watch as the Dems there stop making up nasty stuff about the Greens, and the Republicans likewise with the Libertarians. But expect somewhat higher participation regardless.

        * That 196 includes the 9 votes in Colorado, where a referendum will be on the ballot in 2020 on the state law that entered Colorado into the Compact.

      3. The popular vote compact doesn’t really have a chance. 196 looks impressive at first. But, every state that passed it did so under total Democratic control. With presidential politics being a zero-sum game, which ever party the popular vote compact would hurt (in this case, the Republicans) have zero reason to go along.

        I wish Seattle had ranked choice voting like Maine does. It would have really come in handy in the primary race for many of our Seattle council races, as well as the mayor’s race a few years ago.

        At the same time, I do appreciate Washington being a much more progressive state than most when it comes to voting. It is especially outrageous how other states rig the location and hours of the polling places to effectively limit the number of votes that can be cast in Democratic-dominated urban areas (beyond that limit becomes like squeezing more cars onto I-5 – you don’t get any more votes, just longer lines).

        One of the most outrageous election proposals I came across recently (which, thank god, was scrapped), was for Wisconsin to switch to allocating electoral votes by congressional district (like Maine and Nebraska do) so that Republican gerrymandering could effectively guarantee most of the state’s electoral votes to Trump in 2020, regardless of who actually wins the statewide vote. The idea was to ram it through in the lame duck session last year before the Democratic governor-elect could take over and veto it. The way the math works out, it would have altered the race so that, even if Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania all flipped, Trump would still be re-elected president, unless another Trump 2016 state (e.g. Florida?) also flipped.

    2. You probably majored back in the 70s (or before then). Yep, that was the case back then. But things change. The Democrats have moved slightly to the right; often embracing center right policies proposed by Republicans (Obama, Bill Clinton and Nixon all proposed the same basic health care system). Republicans have moved very far to the right. They are no longer conservative, but reactionary. They have rejected policies put forth by their own party a generation ago (calling the ideas “Socialism”). Trump, meanwhile has gone beyond reactionary policies pushed by men like George W. Bush or Mike Pence, and have adopted extreme right wing nationalism.

      Therefore, there is a very big difference between the parties. Your average Democratic and Republican House member agree on very little. Republicans want to improve upon the New Deal policies (the way that both Republicans and Democrats did in the post-war period). Republicans want to tear it down. Both the Speaker of the House as well as George W. Bush wanted to get rid of Social Security; Republicans routinely want to cut Food Stamps, while cutting taxes. Democrats want a giant, inclusive melting pot. The President of the United States wants no such thing.

      Of course this is a local, non-partisan race, so the differences may not be as stark. But there are still significant differences. For example, in my district, the incumbent supports the station at NE 130th, and wants to build it with Lynnwood Link. She supports upzones. Her opponent opposes both.

      1. Remember, I said mainstream Republicans, and mainstream Democrats, within the spectrum of world political ideologies, there is very little difference. I’m not saying there is no difference.

      2. “Republicans want to improve upon the New Deal policies (the way that both Republicans and Democrats did in the post-war period). Republicans want to tear it down.”

        Obviously you meant to say Democrats at the lead-in.

      3. Remember, I said mainstream Republicans, and mainstream Democrats

        Yes you did, and again, you are out of date. I realize that there is a group of Republicans calling themselves the “Mainstream Republicans”. They are lead by a great man, Dan Evans. They count amongst their members a very nice man that I’ve met and played soccer with — Mike Vaska. But they are delusional if they honestly believe they are mainstream members of their party. They are as out of date as the Teddy Roosevelt Republicans were in the time of FDR. The opposition party is much closer to their stated policies. Their allegiance is one of tradition, nothing more.

        Newt Gingrich, Paul Ryan, George W. Bush — these are not aberrations. These are the leaders of the modern Republican party. These are the people that all — to a one — want to shrink the welfare state dramatically. Not make it more efficient. Not try and “get more bang for the buck”. No, in the words of Grover Norquist, they want to get government down to the size where we can drown it in the bathtub. Cut Food Stamps, cut AFDC, and yes, cut Social Security. All support cutting taxes while cutting mainstream government programs. They would all be considered radicals back when you went to school, Sam, but you obviously haven’t kept up with your studies. They are the mainstream Republican party, and they are very far to the right.

      4. @Tlsgwm — Yes. I sure wish there was an edit button.

        Aach, I also screwed up the next comment as well. Blah. I’m going to bed.

      5. Yeah, the group that calls itself “Mainstream Republicans” is obviously not Republicans. Republicans are all about “starve the beast”, and anything that liberal Seattle opposes is automatically good for them.

        The “no” votes, are going to have to come from Democrats.

      6. Oh, they are Republicans. They just aren’t mainstream Republicans. They are old school liberal to moderate Republicans in the Nelson Rockefeller mode. There are very few of them around, as the party has moved dramatically to the right. That is why it is crazy to call themselves “mainstream” Republicans. They are much closer, politically, to mainstream Democrats.

      7. And a Democrat sent Japanese Americans to concentration camps in 1942. And a Democrat authorized nuclear bombs to be dropped on Nagasaki and Hiroshima. And a Democrat brought US troops in Vietnam to their highest levels at 550,000 men, and a Republican ended the war. And Bill Clinton signed a 1994 crime bill that gave long prison sentences to hundreds of thousands of African Americans for low level drug crimes., and 95% of large US cities with the highest murder rates are run by Democrats. etc., etc.

        Maybe you’re right. Maybe one party is more extreme than the other.

      1. While I won’t admit to being a troll, I do consider myself an expert on them. And this much I know … A troll’s goal isn’t to get laughs, it’s to get a reaction.

  4. And for other voters up here in SnoCo, these are the drop box locations:

    This household dropped off our ballots on Saturday at the box in front of Lynnwood’s City Hall as usual. Easy peasy. As others have stated above, there are few valid excuses* for not returning a ballot under our present system.

    * medical/health emergency, cognitive impairment, incarceration for a felony, for examples

  5. I think you are due a two minute closing argument as if I was giving one at the Seattle City Council dais. So here’s why Heidi Wills for City Council.

    First in case I wasn’t clear before I judge candidates by commitment to my causes, grit and passion long before acoustics, aesthetics or party affiliation. Heidi Wills has five of the six being I’m an independent but Heidi could recruit me for the Democrats. Someone who has handled adversity and learned from it. Someone with a clear positive vision.

    Somehow who won’t hesitate to stand up to friends to uphold personal beliefs – a difficult experience I have received from Heidi and have had to deliver to other friends, and it’s not fun.

    With that, this is the same Heidi Wills who won UPass at UofW/UDub. UPass was critical also in starting a base of pro-transit supportive voters. Big huge game-winning accomplishments creating the political environment for public transit successes from the Sound Move that Heidi helped get on the ballot to give birth to Sound Transit to today’s big wins.

    This is the same Heidi Wills that has served on Sierra Club, Transportation Choices Coalition, Conservation Northwest and Climate Solutions. Same small businesswoman who has created over 60 positions in Seattle. Same wife in a mixed race marriage with two kids. Same role model for a new generation of climate activists and transit activists.

    Finally, I’m just going to say this about my motives as nicely as I can: I am not shilling for dollars or a job in City Hall, and very interested in backing a trustworthy redemptive leader who sings to the best in us and will stand up to I-976. Heidi Wills is that leader.

    For Seattle. For transit advocacy that wins. Heidi Wills. Please.

  6. My somewhat pessimistic guess for what happens on the Sound Transit side if Eyman wins and the initiative is not overturned in the courts:

    Given the makeup of the ST board, my assumption is that they will make tough decisions, prioritizing the future Link lines based on political expedience, rather than projected ridership. Expect across-the board delays, but for the construction of the spine to be mostly preserved, paid for by big cuts in North King, East King, cuts in bus service across the board, and scrapped stations/capital improvements.

    The gory details:

    – Link construction already underway to Northgate, Lynnwood, Bellevue, and Redmond emerges mostly unscathed, since it would look terrible to have a half-finished line lingering for decades. 130th St. station is unable to open with the rest of the line.

    – ST Express sees immediate service cuts in 2020. Rush hour runs emerge mostly unscathed, but off-peak service is slashed across the board, with 15-minute service going to 20, 20-minute service going to 30, and hourly service the norm on Sundays. In the SR-520 corridor, Sound Transit decides the new Montlake Triangle is a success, and kills the 545 on Sundays entirely, allowing half-hourly service on the 542 to be preserved, rather than reduced to hourly. As new Link stations go online, bus routes are aggressively truncated (and the 545/550 completely eliminated), but frequencies on the remaining routes and segments do not improve – instead, the savings is shifted over to a combination of Link operations and helping to cover funding gaps in future ST3 Link extensions.

    – Sound Transit’s promised interim contributions to RapidRide C are scrapped.

    – Sounder remains unchanged from the present, except for enlarged parking garages at the stations, which go through, as scheduled. When the new garages open, the shuttle to Bonney Lake is canceled to cut costs. Due to political pressure, North Sounder continues to run, even after Everett Link has opened.

    – I-405 BRT nominally opens close to schedule, but much of the capital work, both on the Sound Transit side, and the WSDOT side, is cut. Only shoulder bus lanes and the TIBS freeway station remain. The North line skips 85th St. entirely, and becomes essentially a glorified route 535. Sound Transit keeps its promise for 10-minute peak headways, but off-peak service is reduced from every 15 minutes to every 30 minutes, on both lines.

    – SR-522 BRT happens with only minor delays, but off-peak frequency is cut to every 30 minutes. Last trip leaves 145th St. Station at around 11 PM.

    – Link to Federal Way opens mostly on schedule.

    – Link to Tacoma and Everett is delayed by two years, but otherwise opens as planned. At the insistence of Snohomish County board members, the Paine Field diversion remains, in spite of the cost. The provisional station along SR-99 is scrapped. To save money on operations, service north of Lynnwood and south of Federal Way is reduced to every 20 minutes midday, 30 minutes evenings/weekends, but the promised rush hour trains every 6 minutes still happens.

    – Opening of 130th St. station and Graham St. station happens on schedule in 2031, but BAR Station is deferred a year.

    – The Kirkland/Issaquah line is deferred indefinitely, in its entirety.

    – Tacoma Link extensions happen, but get delayed a few years.

    – Within Seattle, a serious fight begins as people decide what to do about Ballard and West Seattle. West Seattle politicians still adamantly push for a tunnel, even though it is clear to everyone that there is no money to pay for it. Wealthy homeowners threaten to sue Sound Transit if they build a line to West Seattle without a tunnel. Meanwhile, on the Ballard side, the Port, along with maritime businesses also insist on a tunnel, and threaten to sue if they don’t get it.

    After years of deadlock, all the stakeholders eventually agree on a compromise. The 2nd downtown tunnel is pushed back to 2045. West Seattle does get its tunnel to the Junction, but it’s deferred until 2045, when the new downtown tunnel opens, and Avalon station is cut, entirely. In SLU, the station at 99/Harrison is also cut, but Westlake/Denny remains. Westlake Station is value-engineered so that passengers transferring between the lines have to go all the way up to the surface, wait for a stoplight, and go all the way down back again, and, of course, the new station doesn’t have down escalators. International District Station is built cut-and-cover under 5th Ave., as ST originally requested.

    In Ballard, they cut the ship canal crossing from the funding entirely, and offer Ballard a choice between ship canal tunnel that is deferred indefinitely, or a line that fights car traffic over the *existing* Ballard bridge, with no hope of ever getting a new bridge or tunnel in the future. In the end, Ballard chooses the line that gets some kind of service there sooner, even if it means, for the last mile or so, Link becomes nothing more than a glorified streetcar. It opens in 2041, along with the rest of the Seattle projects; the station ends up being built on the surface, in what is currently the Safeway parking lot, on the east side of 15th, just south of Market St.

    1. asdf2;

      I think you’re mostly right but I don’t see Link going to Ballard losing quality. West Seattle politicians are snobbish about Light Rail. Ballard politicians are always dreaming of more transit – and they got folks posting in here demanding better. Which gets a regular commentator volunteering for one of their 2019 candidates. So yes, I think Ballard will still get a tunnel not a streetcar.

      I also think an automated spur with a few stops (factory & commercial terminal) or at-grade automated shuttle option to Paine Field with limited stops is a renewed possibility in your scenario. Plz think about that.

      Otherwise, good detailed work!


    2. Assuming I 976 passes (and survivies a court challenge), I could see the West Seattle folks pushing for a head tax to pay for the tunnels. Amazon and others would likely oppose, and giving a lot of money to prevent any West Seattle politician (cough, Dow, cough) from advancing to higher office. (Crosscut had an article that they spent 500,000 against I 976 which is almost 3x smaller than their Seattle City Council expenditure). Ballard likely gets hosed, although folks would look into the monorail tax authority to see if that could use the authority to get something cheap to Westlake.

  7. The whole front side of my ballot is made up of worthless, meaningless “Advisory” votes on bills already passed by the Legislature. The results of these votes have no result whatsoever, but there presence can be a turnoff to low-information voters (most people, alas). It’s past time for the Legislature to act and remove this nonsensical clutter from WA ballots.

    1. Not only are the advisory votes meaningless, but they are all written with the same stilted language that makes it very clear how you are supposed to vote. Having this on the ballot is garbage. At a minimum, anything that is voted on needs to be worded in neutral language.

      1. Should it come as any surprise that these confusing advisory votes are the result of an Eyman initiative?

      2. Yup. I-960 from 2007 brought us these pointless advisory ballot measures.

        “There have been 19 advisory votes in history. Voters chose “maintain” on 7 of them and “repeal” on the other 12. Of those 12, none of the taxes were actually repealed.”

        I typically undervote these items on my ballot unless it’s an advisory I’m up to speed on, like the one dealing with REET on this year’s November ballot.

      3. The 2-year waiting period for the Legislature to clean up the language on these advisory votes or ditch them altogether has elapsed. About all I learned from them is that Eyman’s prescribed language distorted whatever tax increases or tax-break removals the Legislature actually passed.

        I also don’t recall getting an advisory vote on the gas tax increases attached to the 2015 climate-killing highway package.

  8. Random thought I just had. If 976 passes and is constitutional, can transit agencies base their service cuts on how the vote turned out?

    Example 1 – If Seattle voted against 976 and east King county voted for 976, then could Metro say they are making most of their transit cuts on the eastside and leave the Seattle area more unscathed?

    Example 2 – If most of Seattle votes against 976, but west Seattle votes for it, then could local roads / buses / ST3 stuff be cut more in West Seattle compared to other neighborhoods?

    Example 3 – King/Pierce/Snohomish counties vote against 976, but east of the mountains votes for it. Could the state budget cut state funding more from the eastern counties and leave the western counties more intact?

    Or would those be considered political retribution?

    1. No, because all residents of a tax district must be treated equally per the state constitution, regardless of whether they voted for or against it, because they’re paying the taxes. The tax district is the entire ST district, subject to subarea equity.

    2. If decisions made by voters in local elections keep getting usurped at the state level, who’s going to start the initiative to secede from WA?

    3. Egads, no. Some people in eastern Washington want to secede for the opposite reason. (Namely, to restrict taxes further, allow more rural/exurban development, and avoid anything like a carbon tax.) We have a good-sized state with a good variety of things. I’m optimistic that the impediments to sensible walkability and transit and carbon tax will moderate as people get used to the idea and see it as inevitable.

      1. I’m almost tempted to say, if eastern wa wants to join Idaho, good riddance. Until I realize that it would add 2-3 more electoral votes to Donald Trump in 2020.

      2. I don’t think Oregon would want Clark County. It’s sometimes sarcastically referred to as Vantucky.

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