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Dispatches from public radio's correspondent at the Washington Legislature. Austin Jenkins is the Olympia correspondent for the Northwest News Network. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) weekly public affairs program "Inside Olympia."

As Another Eyman Initiative Passes, Legal Challenge Looms

Austin Jenkins
Northwest News Network
File photo of Tim Eyman. The anti-tax activist's latest initiative appears to have been approved by voters in Washington state.

Washington voters appear to have given the thumbs up to another Tim Eyman tax-limiting measure. But the courts could get the final say.

Initiative 1366 would reduce the state sales tax by a penny unless Washington lawmakers send voters a constitutional amendment requiring a two-thirds vote for tax hikes.

Paul Lawrence, an attorney with Pacifica Law Group, argued 1366 violates the single subject rule for initiatives and runs afoul of the requirement that the legislature initiate constitutional amendments. He said a court challenge to keep it from becoming law is now likely.

“The idea would be to seek an expedited, quick resolution so that you’d get a decision by the time the legislature starts meeting in January,” Lawrence said.

An attorney for Eyman said he has a “high level of confidence” the measure can withstand any legal challenge.

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy, as well as the Washington State Legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia."