News Releases

"I am deeply concerned about a bill up for a vote in the House today which would disproportionately punish Washington residents and deny our state critically needed tax dollars.

"The misleadingly-named Business Activity Tax Simplification Act (BAT) would cost our state nearly $700 million dollars a year in revenue by reducing the number of companies subject to Washington's business and occupation tax.

"While this legislation would hit Washington state hardest, dozens of other states stand to lose desperately needed income. In fact, the Congressional Budget Office has estimated that collectively this bill would cost our states $3 billion a year.

"At a time when states are struggling with mounting deficits, the cost of healthcare, skyrocketing fuel prices, and facing another hurricane season, this legislation amounts to yet another unfunded mandate.

"In Washington state alone, the loss of revenue is the equivalent of eliminating all state funding for every college and university in Washington, or cutting all state funding for the State Department of Corrections.

"This is the wrong bill at the wrong time for Washington state residents and Americans across the country.

"Not only could this bill jeopardize critical – and already underfunded – state health and education programs, but it preempts the constitutional right of states to design their own tax systems, promotes tax evasion and puts small businesses at a competitive disadvantage to larger, out-of-state companies.

"I call on my colleagues in the House to stand firm against this misguided legislation. And I call on the Senate Finance Committee to consider the serious consequences of this bill for many states and the future of state sovereignty."