A PAMPHLET by patrickoquinn


									A PAMPHLET
Amendment to the Constitutim-"p~tol
    posed by the Legislature
                                      -            ."--
   Submitting to the People tbe Qnedion of Amadding
Article VII relating to revenue and irSI2Etion. striking   '
Sections 1. 2. 3 and 4. and inserting b lien tbereof a
new Section to be known a s Seotion 1. r,

        To be submitted to the Legal Voters
        of the State of Washington for Their
        Approval or Rejection at the GEN-
        ERAL ELECTlON to be held on
         Tuesday, Nor. 6,1928
                 Compiled and Imsued by
 J GRANT HINXLE, Secretary of -State
  .                        -    - -
                                * -
                                , -        - -.
                                          - * -.
           Under and by Authority of Ghapter 50;
                      Lawm of 1017
    An Amendment to the State
To Be Submitted to the Q u d U W I Electors of the State for Their Appmv.1
                           or Refection at the

                    GENERAL ELECTION
                               TO BE HELD ON
             TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 6,1928

                   CONCISE STATEMENT

"Ax &E~DMENT of Article VII of the state constitution relating to revenue and
   taxation, by striking sections 1, 2, 3 and 4 and inserting in lieu thereof e
   single section reenacting certain provisions of the sections stricken m d
   providing that property may be classified for the purpose of taxation."

AN Acr to amend Article VII of the         or contracted away. All taxes shall be
     constitution of the State of Wash-    uniform upon the same class of prog-
     ington relating to revenue and        erty and shall be levied and collected
     taxation, striking Sections 1, 2, 3   for public purposes only: Provided.
     and 4 and inserting in lieu thereof   That the property of the United Stater
     a new section to be known as Sec-     and of the State, counties, school dir-
     tion 1.                               tricts and other municipal corpora-
                                           tions, and such other property as the
Be i t enacted bg The Legislature of the   legislature may by general laws pro-
     State of Washington:                  vide, shall be exempt from taxation:
   SECTIOX. That a t the general elec-
            1                              And provided further, That the legisla-
tion to be held in this state on the       ture shall have power, by appropriate
Tuesday next succeeding the llrst Non-     legislation, to exempt personal prop-
day in November, 1928, there shall be      erty to the amount of Three Hundred
submitted to the qualified electors of     Dollars ($300.00) for each head of n
this state for their adoption and. ap-     family liable to assessment and taxa-
proval an amendment to Article VII of      tion under the provisions cf the lawr
the Constitution of the State of Wash-     of this hitate of which the individual is
ington, by striking from said Article      the actual bone flde owner.
VII all of sections 1, 2, 3 and 4, and        Passed the House February 3, 1927.
inserting in lieu thereof the following,
to be known as Section 1:                     Paseed the Senate February 18,1927.
   Section 1 The power of taxation
shall never be suspended, surrendered

   Filed in the oface of the Secretary of State. February 26, 1927.
                                    J . GRANT HIEIIZLE, Secretary of Btatc.
                            Ab0004 7 0 5 7 8 7
AN ARGUMENT A t i A l ~ s 1 'THE r ~ u r u b E DAMENDMENT

   The same amendment was sub-             vided by law."       "The Legislature
mitted to the voters of this state at      shall provide by law A UNIFORM
the general election held in Pu'ovem-      AND EQUAL RATE OF ASSESS-
ber, 1 9 0 8 , and overmhelmingly de-      MENT AND TAXATION ON ALL
feated by a vote of nearly three to        PROPERTY in the state, according
one.                                       to its value in money and shall pre-
   A similar amendment has been be-        scribe such regulation by general
fore the Legislature a t every session     law as SHALL SECURE A ZUST
since that time, but each Legislature,     VALUATION FOR TAXATION OF
except the last one, did not forget the    ALL PROPERTY, SO THAT EVERY
emphatic etand taken by the voters.        PERSON        AND       CORPORATION
   All the reasons that the voters had     SHALL PAY A TAX IN PKOPOR-
for the defeat of the amendment be-        TION TO THE VALUE OF HIS,
fore, still hold.                          HER OR ITS PROPERTY."
    Remember, this amendment has               Do you want to strike that from
nothing to do v i t h the amount of        the Constitution? The roters said
taxes levied for state, county, city.      "NO" the other time.
echo01 district and other public pur-          The object of these provisions in
POSeS.                                     the Constitution was to protect the
   I t does not touch upon the question    weak from the strong.
of high taxes or tho reduction of              Granting the Legislature a free
taxes.                                     hand simply means pushing the tax
    This amendment covers the one          burden on to the weak.
question of whose property, and the            This amen&ment opens the doors
extent that one's property, shall be       to special interests a t each legislative
taxed, to make up the total sum re-        session in which each group will try
quired for state, county, city, school     to "get out from under." There will
district and other pnblic purposes.        be more lobbyists than legislators,
    Keep in mind that this amendment       and a new set of tax laws a t each
concerns the very Constitution itself      session. You need one guess as to
which the people themselves have           which group will come out on top in
adopted for t b preservation of their      the end. What will become of equal-
rights and privileges. The Supreme         ity and uniformity then?
Court has said that the Constitution           I t must be remembered that bal-
imposes impassablo barriers beyond         ance of legislative power shifts from
which the Legislature cannot go. It        year to year. The group who feel
is a limitation and not a grant of         that they can today impose their will
power.                                     upon the people may in a short time
    This amendment is a grant of           find themselves hopelessly outclassed
power. I t reverses the whole theory       and a t the mercy of those on whoin
upon which our Constitution is based.      they may have imposed. Such insta-
I t removes the barriers and grants to      bility in dealing with the vital ques-
the Legislsture substantially free          tion of taxation can only result in
power to deal with the complicated          harm to the fair NAME o i our state
subject of taxation in any manner           and internal confusion.
that pleases those who happen to be            THIS IS NOT A CLASSIFICA-
elected to any Legislature.                 TION AMENDMENT. It will actu-
    Here are some of the limitations        ally operate to remove from the Con-
the amendment would strike from             stitution all restrictions upon the
the Constitution,-"All property in the      legislative power of taxation. The
etate not exempt under the laws of          amendment is silent as to what the
 the United States o r under this Con-      basis of classification is or may be.
stitution shall be taxed in proportion         We have prospered under the pres-
 to its value, to be as6ertained as pro-   ent Constitution for nearly forty
Argument Agaiwst Proposed Amemdmemt to State Colzstitzctioa
years, so we can safely wait to go        see that the ofacere you elect spend
about this in the right way instead       less money.
of granting the Legislature all t h i ~      Study this matter from all of itr
Dower.                                    angles. Do not be led astray by ia1.e
   Most of the defects now complained     assertions as to need for change.
of can be cured by enforcing the laws        Look for the amendment on the
we already have. This amendment           ballot and vote-
cannot help us any in that rwpect.        AGAINST THE AMENDMENT
   What we must have is less need of                      J. T. S. LYLE.
taxes. The way to reduce taxes is to                           Tacoma, Wash.

    Filed in the omce of Secretary of State. March 1 0 , 1 9 2 7 .
                                  J. GRANT HINKLE,8ecretat-y 07 Btate.
Vote for t h e Amendment. It Permits t h e Taxing of W e ~ l t h   Now Escaping
   and the Relieving of Land, Farms and Homes of Present Excessive Taxes.
    Under the Constitution of our state by the National Tax Association in
all property must be assessed a t a 1911. I t would permit the classifi-
uniform and equal percentage of its cation of property for taxation by
value, and the rate of taxation levied the legislature, without which a sci-
thereon must be uniform and equal. entific and commonsense revision of
     Experience: Experience has dem- OUT revenue laws is impossible. I t
onstrated that this provision cannot makes no other change in the Con-
be complied with; that all property stitution.
cannot be taxed alike. Land is im-            Since 1908, when this amendment
movable and is taxed where situated, Was formerly submitted, the intang-
regardless of the residence of the ible wealth of the state has in-
owner. The owner of bonds can move creased to immense proportions, and
out of the state and take his bonds the tax burden on land has more
with him, and would do so if bonds than doubled.
were assessed and taxed a t the same           Since then, sixteen states have
rate as land.                              adopted this identical amendment.
     Evasion: Realizing this fact, the         Since then, every Tax Commission
Legislature, pending an amendment to serving the State of Washington in-
the Constitution, declared that bonds cluding the Present commission has
and other intangibles are not prop- urged such a n amendment. The
erty for the purpose of taxation.          Hart Tax Investigating Committee
    ~~d now the state of washington authorized by the 1921 Session, and
is the only state in the Union and the consisting of the following members,
only government in the world where
Such wealth cannot lawfully be taxed. NATHAN ECKSTEIN, Seattle, Chairman.
     One-half of State's Wealth Es- C. W. 17?r0HP, Spokane-
capes Taxes: The result is that ". W.ROBERTSON, Yakima.
wealth represented by intangibles in PETER McGREGOR$ Hooper.
the form of bonds, notes, etc., now S. B. L.PENROSE,
amounting to about one-half of the ALEX                     Hoquiam.
wealth of the state, pays nothing                     M.          Tacoma.
toward the cost of local government, FRAm D. OAKLEy,
and practically the whole burden                         HARLIN,
thereof falls on land.                     REEVES AYLMORE, JR., Seattle, Sec'y.
    One million dollars may be invested recommended               an amendment
in foreign bonds and be untaxed, but and suggested the identical language
if invested in orlr own land or in used in the pending amendment.
merchandise will be taxed $100 a day,          Remarkable Record: The bill sub-
o r $36,500 a year in our large cities. mitting this amendment received the
   Confiscation: Land is not only ex- support of three-fourths of the mem-
cessively taxed but it is being con- bers of the House and the unanimous
fiscated by taxation. Relief must support of the senate except one
come from some source. Means must absent member against the opposi-
be found of making all forms of tion of one of the strongest lobbies
wealth bear some share of the burden ever assembled in Olympia.
of government.                                 Thirty Other States: The consti-
     The Remedy: The means must be tutions of some thirty states now per-
found in new tax laws, and the first mit of classification, including such
step is to remove the senseless and conservative states as Delaware, Ken-
unscientific restrictions on the action tucky, Maryland, Maine, Massachu-
of our legislative bodies contained setts, Missouri, New York, Pennsyl-
in our state constitution, and that vania, Rhode Island and Virginia.
is the object of the proposed amend-           The Federal Government uses
ment.                                      classification in all of its forms of
    It substitutes for the inflexible pro- taxation.
vision above mentioned, the follow-            The Supreme Court of the United
ing: "All t a x e s shall be uniform States said: "A system which im-
upon t h e same class of property."        poses the same tax upon every spe-
    This wording was recommended cies of property, irrespective of itcl
                                     ( 6 )
  Argunze~tFor Proposed Amemdmemt to Xtate Comstitzltiom
nature, condition, or class, will be       which the cost of government will be
destructive of uniformity and equal-       shared by all the members of society,
ity in taxation."                          and more revenue can be raised with
     Lower Taxes Possible: The pro-        less cause for complaint, and the
posed amendment will not in itself         taxes of the farm owner, the home
lower taxes, and i t does not purport      owner, and the land owner, under
to do so. Its passage will open the        the new system can be materially re-
way for substantial reductions to the      duced.
taxpayers of this state.                        I t has the opposition of those per-
     Industries can be encouraged by       sons and of those interests who are
tax concessions.                           unfair beneficia-ririss under the pres-
     Provision can be made for the re-     ent system, but i t should have the
forestation of logged-off lands.           support of everyone willing to pay
     Investments in bonds and notes        his or her fair share of the cost of
secured by property within the state       the government under which they
can be encouraged, while the send-         live and whose protection and advan-
ing of our own money outside of the        tages they enjoy.
state can be discouraged.                                   -
     Legislative Power: State Consti-           The State of Wa.shington has the
tutions should embody fundamental           most antiquated tax system in the
principles only, and not details. The       United States, under which almost
legislature should be trusted to deal       the entire burden of the cost of gov-
with them. I t is now entrusted with        ernment falls on real property.
matters of life and death. I t can im-          Special interests and tax dodgers
pose or abolish death penalties. It         favored under the present unjust sys-
 can abolish marriage, make divorce         tem and their paid propagandists op-
 impossible, escheat estates of dece-       pose this measure, but its passage is
 dents in whole or in part, and it is       essential to the future prosperity of
 called upon to act on bills affecting      this state. Do not be deceived by
 man from birth to death, and his es-       their propaganda or false alarms.
 tate after death. Why should classi-       The constitutions of thirty states of
 fication of property for taxation be       the Union permit classification, and
 set apart as something sacred, with        the principle has worked everywhere
 which t h 6 legislature cannot be          when tried.
 trusted to deal?                                This measure is the only tax re-
      Lobbyists: There always have          lief proposed.
 been lobbyists a t the sessions of our          Vote for the Constitutional
 Legislature, and always will be,           Amendment to classify property, and
 whether this amendment carries or          help remedy our tax system and
 not. Lobbying is no worse in the            bring prosperity to this state.
 states where property is classified       k S. GOSS, Master. Washington State
 than in those where it is not. The            Grange.
 strongest lobbies in this state have      J. W. WHEELER, Past President, Pacifio
  been maintained by the railroad and          Northwest Real Estate Assoclat!on.
  power companies which oppose this        L. S. BOOTH, Chairman, Committee on
  measure. They are special benefi-            State Taxation, National Real Estate
  ciaries under the present laws, and          Boards.      .
  do not want them changed.                LESTER P. EDGE, Spokane. Legislator.
      False Hope: Economy in govern-       DIO RICH,ARDSON, Chairman, Taxation
  ment should always be strived for            Cbmmlttee, Washington Education
  under any system of taxation, but it         Association.
  will not bring about an equitable dis-   WASHINGTON TAX EQUALIZATION
                                               COUXCIL : By FRANK C. JACKSON,
  tribution of the burden and it is be-        Secretary.
  ing urged now with the deliberate
  purpose of diverting the voters from      STATE OF WASHINGTON-44s.
  the support of this measure.                 Filed in the office of Secretary of Stat6
      Real Hope: This amendment will        July 14, 1928.
  open the way for new laws under              J..GRANT HINKLE, Secretary of State.

Proponente Argue False, Kot Real Issues.          True Purpose of Amendment
Amendment Wonld Not Permit Taxing New Wealth, But Wonld Open Door
 to Tax Laws Fostered by Special Interest Lobbies and Political Cliques,
     Unfair to Farmers, Home Owners and Other Property Owners.

     Concerning Experience: The advo-       ment assessments that the payment
catea of the proposed amendment             of the local improvement assessments
seek to divert attention from its lack       (regardless of general taxes) was not
of merit by raising false issues. Tax       justified.
revision should be constructive, not            Of the farm mortgages foreclosed
destructive, and you will vote on this      by the Federal Land Baak of Spo-
measure by considering what it will         kane, which serves Washington, Ore-
or will not do.                             gon, Idaho and Montana, nearly one-
     Regarding Evasion:       Advocates     half in amount were in Montana, and
seek to make i t appear that the            that state taxes intangibles and has
amendment's sole purpose is to pro-         classification.
vide for taxation of intangibles and            Proposed Amendment Not a Rem-
thus to divert attention from its true      edy: Taxes are too high, but this
purpose. IT WILL NOT PERMIT                 propo~ec:amendment is no remedy.
THE TAXATION OF INTANGIBLES.                I t will not produce new revenue. I t
Our Supreme Court has held that             will not relieve the burden of taxes
"intangibles are not property," hence        on property. I t will not relieve the
intangibles cannot be taxed if the           burden of taxes on farmers and home
amendment         passes.    Intangibles     owners.
 should be taxed. The opponents of the          I t will make taxation the football
 pending amecdment tried to secure           of politics a t every session of the
 a n amendment specifically providing        Legislature.
 for the taxation of intangibles, but
 were prevented by the very men who             I t is not true that the National Tax
 now urge the approval of the pro-           Association Committee of 1 9 1 1 nor
 posed amendment.                            the Hart Tax Investigating Commit-
      The best legal opinions say that,      tee recommended the UNLIMITED
 with proper legislation and effective       CLASSIFICATION proposed by this
 administration, every form of wealth        amendment. I t is not true that six-
 within the State may be taxed under         teen State Constitutions contain the
 our present Constitution except in-         identical language of the proposed
 tangibles. The advocates of the pro-        amendment. There is BUT ONE.
 posed amendment defeated an effort             WHAT ABOUT THAT REMARK-
 to make intangibles taxable.                ABLE RECORD? The proponents
      Does One-Half the State's Wealth       of this proposed amendment led some
 Escape Taxes? Much of the wealth            of the members of the 1 9 2 7 Legisla-
  now escaping taxes can be taxed if          ture, and are now trying to lead the
 the Legislature and the people wish          people, to Selieve that this amend-
  i t taxed, and if the present tax laws      ment would give the Legislature
  are fairly and courageously adminis-        power to tax intangibles.         Other
  tered.                                      legislators were influenced by dis-
      The claim that intangibles make         agreements that had arisen over other
  up one-half the State's wealth is           legislation. I t was a case of barter-
  false. What the amount may be is            and-trade, and that will be the rule
  unknown. The proposed amendment             with every tax proposal if the amend-
  would not permit taxing any intan-          ment passes. The best trader will
  gibles.                                     get the best treatment.
      About Confiscation: City lots which        What Thirty States? Ask the ad-
  have been sold for taxes have been          vocates of this proposed amendment
  so heavily loaded with local improve-       to show you the Constitutions of
            Proposed Amendment Harmful and Dalzgerozcs
  t h i r t y states containing this identical      brokers lobbying f o r laws t h a t will
  provision.          There is ONLY ONE,            advance their own selfish interests
  Minnesota. Minnesota is now seek-                at t h e expense of farmers and home
  ing a new constitutional amendment.              owners, who will be left t o flght their
  T h a t s t a t e is i n a s much trouble over   own battles.
  i t s tax problem a s i t was before i t              W h a t A r e "False"      a n d What
  adopted classification.                          b8Real" Hopes? By calling "economy
       L'How" Lower Taxes by This                  i n government" a "false hope" t h e
 Amendment? Advocates of this pro-                 proponents suggest a desire f o r
  posed amendment say t h a t i t would            "more money t o spend." They say:
 open t h e door t o substantial t a x re-         "This amendment opens t h e way f o r
 ductions. HOW? They suggest t h e                 new t a x laws under which more rev-
 exemption of some properties a n d                enue c a n be raised." I n another p a r t
 t h e making of t a x concessions t o             of their a r g u m e n t they say: "Its pas-
 others. No new revenue will be                    sage will open t h e way f o r substan-
 forthcoming, s o a t a x concession t o           tial reductions to taxpayers." With t h e
 one class will add t o t h e tax burden           one statement they hope t o catch t h e
 of others. The partial exemption of               TAXPAYERS' votes a n d with t h e
 city property would add to the tax bur-           o t h e r t o catch t h e "TAXEATER"
 den of f a r m property. T h e partial            votes.
 exemption of f a r m property (al-                    Summary: Every a r g u m e n t ad-
 though this is politically impossible             vanced by t h e proponents has been
 with f a r m population i n t h e minor-          fully and frankly answered. The t r u e
 ity) would a d d t o t h e t a x burden of        purpose behind this amendment h a s
 t h e home owners.                                been exposed.
      Legislative P o w e r Too Broad:
 This proposed amendment is a                          T H E PROPOSED AMENDMENT
a n d not a LIMITATION.                 I t em-    W I L L NOT PERMIT T H E TAXA-
powers a bare majority of any Legis-               TION O F INTANGIBLES OR O F
l a t u r e t o create favored classes with-
o u t a n y reference t o o r consideration        ANY PROPERTY THAT CANNOT
of fundamental principles of justice               NOW B E TAXED. I T W I L L NOT
a n d equity.                                      RELIEVE T H E FARMERS AND
      More Lobbyists Wanted by Pro-                HOME OWNERS.
ponents: The advocates assert t h a t                  I T W I L L CREATE LEGISLATIVE
i n t h e past lobbyists have been able
t o secure favors f o r special interests          CHAOS, INSTABLE TAX LAWS,
even with t h e present safeguards a n d           ENCOURAGE "SPECIAL INTER-
limitations, yet they ask for a scheme             EST" LOBBIES CLAMORING FOR
t h a t will remove every safeguard                SPECIAL FAVORS.
against these "special interests'" lob-
byists.                                               IT I S HARMFUL AND DESTRUC-
      Some farmers a n d home owners               TIVE.
may be misled into voting f o r this                  VOTE AGAINST IT.
amendment by t h e representations of
a few real estate brokers who a r e i t s          (Signed)    FRED K. JONES, President
original sponsors a n d advocates. If              Taxpayers' Economy League of Spokane.
it passes, t h e farmers a n d home own-              Past President Paciflc Northwest Real
e r s will find these same real estate                Estate Association.

   Filed in the oface of Secretary of State, August 4, 1928.
                                J. GRANT HINKLE, Secretary of Btate.

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