• VOTE MAINTAINED

    Vote Maintained to strengthen mental health crisis support

  • This spring, lawmakers passed Engrossed Substitute House Bill 1477 to expand the state’s crisis response system to include a new hotline dealing exclusively with mental health emergencies.

    Sponsored by Democratic legislators, the law will divert some calls away from 911 so that Washingtonians can get more specialized crisis responses. In addition, law enforcement officers no longer need to take on responsibilities associated with social workers. This will be funded by a tax of 30 cents a month on most phone services in October 2021 until a bump to 75 cents a month starting in July 2024. All revenue generated by the tax will go to crisis line-related expenses, including expanding hotline personnel during the community mental health crisis associated with the pandemic.

    Vote “Maintained” on State Advisory Vote 36.

    This spring, lawmakers passed Engrossed Substitute House Bill 1477 to expand the state’s crisis response system to include a new hotline dealing exclusively with mental health emergencies.

    Sponsored by Democratic legislators, the law will divert some calls away from 911 so that Washingtonians can get more specialized crisis responses. In addition, law enforcement officers no longer need to take on responsibilities associated with social workers. This will be funded by a tax of 30 cents a month on most phone services in October 2021 until a bump to 75 cents a month starting in July 2024. All revenue generated by the tax will go to crisis line-related expenses, including expanding hotline personnel during the community mental health crisis associated with the pandemic.

    Vote “Maintained” on State Advisory Vote 36.

  • Endorsed By: The Stranger
  • VOTE MAINTAINED

    Vote Maintained to balance our tax code

  • Washingtonians deserve an economy that works for us all. An essential part of that is a balanced tax code where everyone pays their share. Yet, Washington boasts the most upside-down system in the nation, where the state’s lowest-income earners pay 17% of their income in taxes while the wealthiest few pay just 3% of their income.

    This legislative session, Democratic lawmakers wrote and passed Engrossed Substitute Senate Bill 5096, which created a 7% capital gains tax on the sale of assets like stocks valued above $250,000. The tax is estimated to raise about $415 million primarily for child care and early learning - both services that became clearly essential to Washingtonians during the coronavirus pandemic.

    We know that good public schools, beautiful parks, and strong social services make Washington a great place to live. This long-overdue capital gains tax will go towards making sure that all Washingtonians pay their share in taxes and have the opportunity to thrive.

    Vote "Maintained" on State Advisory Vote 37.

    Washingtonians deserve an economy that works for us all. An essential part of that is a balanced tax code where everyone pays their share. Yet, Washington boasts the most upside-down system in the nation, where the state’s lowest-income earners pay 17% of their income in taxes while the wealthiest few pay just 3% of their income.

    This legislative session, Democratic lawmakers wrote and passed Engrossed Substitute Senate Bill 5096, which created a 7% capital gains tax on the sale of assets like stocks valued above $250,000. The tax is estimated to raise about $415 million primarily for child care and early learning - both services that became clearly essential to Washingtonians during the coronavirus pandemic.

    We know that good public schools, beautiful parks, and strong social services make Washington a great place to live. This long-overdue capital gains tax will go towards making sure that all Washingtonians pay their share in taxes and have the opportunity to thrive.

    Vote "Maintained" on State Advisory Vote 37.

  • Endorsed By: The Stranger
  • VOTE MAINTAINED

    Vote Maintained to close a tax loophole for insurance companies

  • In the most recent legislative session, lawmakers passed Second Substitute Senate Bill 5315, which creates a 2% tax on certain insurance premiums. In effect, the law would close a tax loophole for corporations with their own insurance policies, known as captive insurers, so that all insurance companies pay premiums taxes. It is estimated to generate around $53 million over the next decade.

    SB 5315 had bipartisan sponsorship and was passed nearly unanimously with only one vote of opposition between both houses. The legislation was requested by Democratic Washington Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler, who wants to make sure that all insurance companies pay their share of taxes.

    Ensuring big corporations pay their share is an important step toward balancing our state's tax code. Vote “Maintained” on State Advisory Vote 38.

    In the most recent legislative session, lawmakers passed Second Substitute Senate Bill 5315, which creates a 2% tax on certain insurance premiums. In effect, the law would close a tax loophole for corporations with their own insurance policies, known as captive insurers, so that all insurance companies pay premiums taxes. It is estimated to generate around $53 million over the next decade.

    SB 5315 had bipartisan sponsorship and was passed nearly unanimously with only one vote of opposition between both houses. The legislation was requested by Democratic Washington Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler, who wants to make sure that all insurance companies pay their share of taxes.

    Ensuring big corporations pay their share is an important step toward balancing our state's tax code. Vote “Maintained” on State Advisory Vote 38.

  • Endorsed By: The Stranger
  • Robin Vazquez is a Lacey Planning Commissioner running for Lacey City Council, Position 4. Her priorities include increasing access to affordable housing and providing more public transit and transportation choices. As a member of the commission, Vazquez has supported increasing the housing supply in Lacey to match the need for more affordable options. She mentions that as a certified instructor for teaching English as a second language and as a Community Emergency Response Team member, she wants to develop a city language access plan and multilingual disaster preparation.

    Vazquez is running against Emma McSharry, who said her frustrations with the state's COVID regulations and homelessness spurred her to run for office. Her Facebook states that her three priorities include fiscal responsibility, supporting businesses, and cleanliness, though more detailed policies are not available on her website. This snapshot of her potential agenda, along with endorsements by the police officer's guild and Republican elected officials, indicate she would likely pursue a moderate to conservative agenda if elected.

    Vazquez has earned the support of several members of the current city council, as well as a large number of city councilmembers from neighboring cities and progressive members of the state legislature. Vazquez is by far the best choice in this race.

    Robin Vazquez

    Robin Vazquez is a Lacey Planning Commissioner running for Lacey City Council, Position 4. Her priorities include increasing access to affordable housing and providing more public transit and transportation choices.

    Robin Vazquez

    Robin Vazquez is a Lacey Planning Commissioner running for Lacey City Council, Position 4. Her priorities include increasing access to affordable housing and providing more public transit and transportation choices.

  • Mayor Andy Ryder is running unopposed for re-election to the Lacey City Council.

    He has served on the council since 2010, and is a member of the board of directors for thee Race, Equity, and Leadership Council (REAL) for the National League of Cities. In his time on the council, Ryder has been supportive of veterans services, the city's newly-instated commission of equity, and expanding housing options.
    Mayor Andy Ryder is running unopposed for re-election to the Lacey City Council.

    He has served on the council since 2010, and is a member of the board of directors for thee Race, Equity, and Leadership Council (REAL) for the National League of Cities. In his time on the council, Ryder has been supportive of veterans services, the city's newly-instated commission of equity, and expanding housing options.

    Andy Ryder

    Mayor Andy Ryder is running unopposed for re-election to the Lacey City Council.
  • Michael Steadman is running unopposed for re-election to the Lacey City Council, Position 6. He is a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps and owner of a commercial leasing company.

    Steadman is running to use his experience as a small business owner to help Lacey recover economically from the COVID-19 pandemic. Last year, Steadman ran as a Democrat for Thurston County Commissioner, a campaign in which he promoted tackling water quality issues, improving alternative criminal justice options, and improving mental health services.
    Michael Steadman is running unopposed for re-election to the Lacey City Council, Position 6. He is a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps and owner of a commercial leasing company.

    Steadman is running to use his experience as a small business owner to help Lacey recover economically from the COVID-19 pandemic. Last year, Steadman ran as a Democrat for Thurston County Commissioner, a campaign in which he promoted tackling water quality issues, improving alternative criminal justice options, and improving mental health services.

    Michael Steadman

    Michael Steadman is running unopposed for re-election to the Lacey City Council, Position 6. He is a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps and owner of a commercial leasing company.
  • Endorsed By: Sierra Club
  • Carolyn Cox was elected in 2018 and is serving her first term as a councilmember for Position 7. She represents the city in several organizations, including as chair of the Intercity Transit Authority, on the Thurston County Regional Housing Council, and on the Thurston Climate Mitigation Steering Committee. Cox is now running for mayor to bring these issues to the forefront in a combined local and regional approach to continue to improve the lives of residents.

    Cox notes that there is not enough housing to meet the needs of residents, especially the unsheltered. She wants to continue working with the housing council to build more lower-cost housing. The council also just unanimously approved the creation of mobile outreach teams, who will work with police to contact and help those who are homeless or in crisis. She supports the creation and expansion of bike lanes, safe pedestrian walkways, and public transit. As the city begins to recover from the pandemic, Cox states that the $1 million grant fund to small businesses is just the first step in making sure that residents and establishments get back on their feet.

    Cox faces a challenge from Felix Peguero-Reyes, a U.S. Army veteran who now works as a financial advisor. He has not released a detailed platform but states he wants to focus on economic development and safety. He has been endorsed by some conservative business groups and Republican elected officials.

    Cox has earned an impressive set of progressive endorsements because of her track record on the council and detailed platform. Cox is the clear choice for Lacey City Council, Position 7.

    Carolyn Cox was elected in 2018 and is serving her first term as a councilmember for Position 7. She represents the city in several organizations, including as chair of the Intercity Transit Authority, on the Thurston County Regional Housing Council, and on the Thurston Climate Mitigation Steering Committee. Cox is now running for mayor to bring these issues to the forefront in a combined local and regional approach to continue to improve the lives of residents.

    Cox notes that there is not enough housing to meet the needs of residents, especially the unsheltered. She wants to continue working with the housing council to build more lower-cost housing. The council also just unanimously approved the creation of mobile outreach teams, who will work with police to contact and help those who are homeless or in crisis. She supports the creation and expansion of bike lanes, safe pedestrian walkways, and public transit. As the city begins to recover from the pandemic, Cox states that the $1 million grant fund to small businesses is just the first step in making sure that residents and establishments get back on their feet.

    Cox faces a challenge from Felix Peguero-Reyes, a U.S. Army veteran who now works as a financial advisor. He has not released a detailed platform but states he wants to focus on economic development and safety. He has been endorsed by some conservative business groups and Republican elected officials.

    Cox has earned an impressive set of progressive endorsements because of her track record on the council and detailed platform. Cox is the clear choice for Lacey City Council, Position 7.

    Carolyn Cox

    Carolyn Cox was elected in 2018 and is serving her first term as a councilmember for Position 7.