Last year, liberals made a lot of claims about what would happen if voters rejected Proposition 1, county leaders’ “proposal to increase regressive sales taxes and to raise car tab fees by $60” in order to pay for King County Metro services they say would be cut if the measure wasn’t approved. After voters overwhelmingly rejected Prop 1, King County Executive Dow Constantine threatened to “cut 16 percent of Metro bus service.” And, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray “proposed his own tax-increase plan” to prevent what he called a “crisis for 50,000 riders on transit.”
During the campaign, Prop 1 supporters relied on scare tactics to make their point. Via the Washington Policy Center,
“King County Councilmember Larry Phillips warned the planned cuts would have dreadful effects. He said their own planned bus cuts would ‘harm low-wage workers’ and ‘increase traffic congestion, damage our economic competiveness, diminish mobility options for seniors, youth and people with disabilities, and hurt our environment.’
“Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant said cutting bus service would ‘disproportionately affect low-wage workers, the elderly, the disabled, and people of color.’
“Ken Michelson, the Director for the Alliance for People with Disabilities cautioned, ‘People could literally die without transit to access food, and go to needed doctor appointments.’”
One year after voters rejected Prop 1, based on the nature of the claims, one would expect sky-is-falling consequences. But, that’s not the case. Washington Policy Center,
“Finding: Devastating bus cuts did not happen – Metro became more efficient and gained ridership without increasing regressive taxes
Despite the claims by public officials that “there are no other options but to cut service,” King County Councilmembers canceled their promised bus cuts. By finding efficiencies and better managing rising revenues at current tax rates, the Council preserved 95 percent of bus service and made the bus system more efficient. Metro Transit is now on-pace to grow ridership even higher this year, despite claims from Metro representatives that without Proposition 1’s regressive tax increases, Metro would lose “an unprecedented 14 million rides annually” due to service cuts.
“Finding: Low-income families benefited the most from Proposition 1’s failure
Low-income families actually benefited the most from the defeat of Proposition 1. Voters stopped King County officials from increasing the regressive tax burden on all working families, whether or not they ride the bus. In addition, low-income bus riders got a break at the farebox. They now pay a reduced-$1.50 per ride instead of the $3.25 peak two-zone fare. In fact, according to Metro’s survey released this month, new riders on Metro tended to be younger, have lower incomes and are more racially diverse than Metro’s “experienced” riders.
“Finding: Metro continues to see windfall profits without regressive tax increases
“Prior to the vote, Metro officials claimed a $60 million operating revenue shortfall resulted in the need to cut neighborhood bus service. However, in March of 2014, Washington Policy Center reported that Metro was actually receiving a $32 million sales tax windfall above budgeted estimates. Metro officials ultimately acknowledged the improved revenue picture; however, they only planned on receiving less than half of the additional revenue.
“Last year, Metro officials have collected record-breaking levels of tax revenue. Information released by King County last month reveals Metro received an even-higher $40 million tax windfall last year, and officials project six to seven percent growth this year. The new growth estimates show Metro will receive over half a billion dollars in sales tax revenue alone this year, all without raising regressive taxes.”
What is the lesson voters should learn from the claims made by liberals versus, well, reality? As the Washington Policy Center puts it, “When you hear public officials threaten to cut vital services if they don’t receive more tax money, it is likely the threats are exaggerated, and that tax revenue may be increasing anyway.”
Notice how that lesson could be applied to the budget debate going on in Olympia right now: Democrats claim tax hikes are necessary to pay for essential services, while Republicans point to the $3 billion in added revenue… and the balanced budget they produced without raising taxes.
By finding efficiencies and better managing rising revenues at current tax rates, the Council preserved 95 percent of bus service and made the bus system more efficient.
Uh, you do know that Seattle is buying more bus service from Metro than ever, right?
In November, voters approved a transportation package to fund increased bus service throughout the region.
While it’s amusing to see you guys and the WPC describe the always-dominated-by-liberals King County government as a paragon of conservative revenue estimates and leaner, wiser government spending, it’s
downright dishonesteven more dishonest than usual for both blogs to ignore completely the voter-approved tax increase which provided much of the funds for Metro’s service expansion.
So what you’re telling me (like the article) is despite all the threats to the contrary, Prop 1 really wasn’t needed at all. Got it.
No Biff, I’m telling you there is far more to the story than the WPC and this blog are telling you. You get to decide if that impacts their credibility with you.
Prop 1 was overwhelmingly rejected. A year later, threatened service cuts didn’t happen. The only place there’s far more to the story is in your leftist mind.
Prop 1 was overwhelmingly rejected.
King County‘s Proposition 1 failed in April 2014. In response, Seattle had it’s own Proposition 1 in November, which passed. Tax revenues from this latter Proposition 1, approved by Seattle’s voters, are being used by the City of Seattle to purchase (more) bus service from King County Metro. This additional revenue, provided by Seattle’s Proposition 1, is one of the reasons the predictions made before failure of King County’s earlier vote didn’t happen.
A year later, threatened service cuts didn’t happen.
This post simply ignores the November vote, and the resultant revenue increase it provides to King County Metro. Worse, it takes statements made by officials before the April 2014 vote, and pretends they still applied after the November vote in Seattle. That’s all remarkably dishonest, even for places like the WPC and this blog.
The only place there’s far more to the story is in your leftist mind.
A voter-approved tax increase may represent a failure of your ideology, but it really did happen. Anyone who does not know this lacks standing to comment on this issue.
I don’t own property in Seattle so I’m not being bilked into throwing any more money down the Metro rat hole. Apparently you don’t either, judging by your receipt of “many rent increase notices” unless your claim on another thread is a lie.
Eastside Sanity says
Tensor needs the Red Stapler back…….
I don’t own property in Seattle so I’m not being bilked into throwing any more money down the Metro rat hole.
Seattle’s Proposition 1 did not authorize a new tax, or a tax increase, on real property:
This proposition would authorize an additional annual vehicle license fee of $60 per registered vehicle with a $20 rebate for low-income individuals and authorize a 0.1% sales and use tax.
You might indeed be paying for Seattle’s purchase of bus service from Metro, if you buy certain items in Seattle.
I stand corrected. Thankfully, none of my 3 vehicles is registered in Seattle and since I moved away from there 10 years ago I try to stay as far away as I can so again, I’m not being bilked into throwing any more money down the Metro rat hole. The next time you see some chump with a car registered in Seattle, thank them for saving Metro for all of King County.
Apparently you don’t either, judging by your receipt of “many rent increase notices”
So, my rental of one property in Seattle somehow prohibits my owning any property in Seattle? How exactly does that work?
… unless your claim on another thread is a lie.
The guy who got his basic facts wrong all the way through this thread is, of course, the first guy to issue groundless accusations of someone else having lied. Priceless!
When you say your rental of one property generated “many rent increase notices”, that makes it sound like you’re a long-term tenant. What quantity is “many”? Like I said in the thread you didn’t cherry-pick, I’ve been a homeowner more time than a tenant and I’ve got 2 rent increase notices in my life and neither of them had any justification at all, much less citing increased property taxes. I wouldn’t call 2 “many”. You just made a pathetic attempt to paint landlords as greedy bourgeois capitalists and failed. Sorry, Comrade. Have you found a chump with a car registered in Seattle to thank for “saving” Metro for all of King County?
When you say your rental of one property generated “many rent increase notices”, that makes it sound like you’re a long-term tenant.
Yes, I was. How did that prevent me from owning property? Or do you believe renters don’t really pay for property taxes?
What quantity is “many”?
Four or five in the final two years, at least. Half a dozen or so in the decade-plus before then.
Like I said in the thread you didn’t cherry-pick, I’ve been a homeowner more time than a tenant and I’ve got 2 rent increase notices in my life and neither of them had any justification at all, much less citing increased property taxes.
I didn’t claim the increases were actually justified; I said property taxes were repeatedly cited as justification for rental increases.
I wouldn’t call 2 “many”.
Neither did I.
You just made a pathetic attempt to paint landlords as greedy bourgeois capitalists and failed. Sorry, Comrade.
The guy who just got his basic facts repeatedly wrong, all through this thread, now ignorantly makes a false claim and blames someone else. Too funny!
4 or 5 rent increases in 2 years? All citing property taxes as the reason for the increase? And you kept renting the place despite “owning property”? The tale is getting taller and taller.
I just saw on the news the completely inept Seattle government spends $17 to process a $20 rebate for low income chumps who register their cars in Seattle under Prop 1. Once the skim is done, it’s a wonder there’s any money left over to “save” Metro for all of King County. But hey, it grows government so you’re behind it 100%
My example wasn’t even that extreme. Elsewhere in my neighborhood:
While previous rates for its studios and one-bedroom units ranged from $600 to $900 a month, the new owners are jacking up rents an extra $315 to $670 a month.
PLP directly involved me in this struggle when I received an increase notice of $580 for my one-bedroom unit, which currently rents for $815—a 71 percent jump I can’t afford.
That was just over two years ago. Here are examples from last year:
Our rent was going up by $300.
A few months back, my wife had seen a cute little place for rent nearby that was $975, but when we looked into it again, we discovered they’d adjusted the rent to $1,595.
The property-management company which bought my long-time residence made smaller increases, but more of them, raising my rent from $845/month to over $1000 across two years, $40-$50 at a time. That’s not as much as the numbers in the other cases, of course, but I’m still glad that I left. By claiming property taxes, the owners “explained” why these increases resulted in no improvements in the physical plant, and reduction in service provided to us tenants.
Your example was a non sequitur. Who said anything at all about amounts? This isn’t a thread about your Tsarina’s fake outrage over rents to get big government rent controls. Your ridiculous claim was your landlord raised your rent every 5 months and despite “owning property”, you stupidly sat back and did nothing for at least 2 years. Real people get a rent increase every 2-3 years and when they decide it’s too much, they move.
Your ridiculous claim was your landlord raised your rent every 5 months…
From the follow-up article:
Every couple months, I’d get a notice taped to my door or delivered by e-mail. […] There were three notices in all, slating monthly $480 to $580 rent increases to begin before the expiration of my [13-month] lease,
I leave it up to you to figure out that an event which happens “every couple months” or three events in less than 13 months is equal to, or more frequent than, “every 5 months.”
…sat back and did nothing for at least 2 years.
I checked rates for similar apartments in my neighborhood; due to my long tenancy, my rental rate was still below-market. When the repeated increases finally brought me to just below average, I promptly moved; I refused to wait until I was paying market-rate for a deteriorating property with declining services.
This isn’t a thread about your Tsarina’s fake outrage over rents to get big government rent controls.
No, this is a thread where you repeatedly failed to understand how the post’s author had you easily and completely fooled with an obviously dishonest story about Metro bus service. You’ve since made several other ignorant statements, all of which turned out to be wrong as well, including false accusations against the person who did get all of his facts right.
That’s quite a performance, even from you. Don’t worry, though; I have complete confidence you’ll keep bringing the laughs to us Seattle liberals.
Let’s see, every couple (in most cases, 2) months you’ve gotten a legally binding sticky note or an email, 3 in all (so a total 6 month time frame) averaging $530/month increase for a total of a $1,590 rent hike on an existing lease. Where can I get a sweetheart deal like that?
I already gave the numbers in my case; the numbers from the news stories were to counter your repeated ignorant assertions that my numbers were unbelievably high. Did I get a better deal than they did? Yes. Did that make my situation tolerable? No, I had a better option available, and took it.
Thanks again for the laughs.
I don’t care about your numbers. That wasn’t the point although you’re to dense to get it. The point is only the worlds biggest fool would tolerate monthly rent increases on an existing (13 month) lease. I’ve seen a lot of residential and commercial leases but I’ve never seen a (13 month) lease. It must fit hand-in-glove with your (13 month) year.
The point is only the worlds biggest fool would tolerate monthly rent increases on an existing (13 month) lease. […] It must fit hand-in-glove with your (13 month) year.
That was someone else’s lease, and that person didn’t “tolerate” it:
As I mentioned in my article last January, PLP rescinded the first increase after I mailed them a copy of my lease. The next two rent-hike notices occurred after that article was published. I’d contact PLP apartment manager Lorrie Bowen and/or regional manager Jason Alldredge explaining why I believed the notices were in violation, and neither would respond, so I continued to pay my previously agreed-upon rent by the first of each month.
You really don’t care about numbers, all right:
The point is only the worlds biggest fool would tolerate monthly rent increases…
And no one has. You’re the only one even claiming there were “monthly rent increases”.
I guess if you don’t want to understand something, you just won’t — no matter how clearly or carefully the matter is explained to you. Again, thanks for all of the laughs.
So it started out as your (13 month) lease and now the claim comes from someone else. Since you read it in an august publication like The Stranger, it just has to be true. Typical lying communist.
Where did I ever claim to have had a 13-month lease? Your chronic problems with basic reading comprehension are not my fault.
Since you read it in an august publication like The Stranger, it just has to be true.
That’s rich, coming from someone who makes accusations based on nothing more than his own ignorant opinions.
Thanks for the laughs.
“Of the many rental-increase notices I’ve received in Seattle over the years, I can’t recall a single one which didn’t list property taxes as a justification — it was often the very first factor cited”
Notice you said I’VE received, as in you personally. When questioned you went straight to obfuscation, claiming to have received 4-5 rent increase notices over the term of YOUR (13 month) lease, never saying this was from some article in The Stranger you dug out the trash can.
When questioned you went straight to obfuscation, claiming to have received 4-5 rent increase notices over the term of YOUR (13 month) lease,
Your claiming I ever said something is not in any way proof I ever said it. There’s nothing in your quote here, or in that linked thread, where I claim personally to have had a 13-month lease.
Furthermore, it’s not “obfuscation” to make consistent statements. There’s absolutely no conflict between saying I’d received “many rental increase notices in Seattle over the years,” and “4-5 rent increase notices” over a period of time within those years. I suggest you leave the big words to us who can use them correctly.
… never saying this was from some article in The Stranger…
I provided a hyperlink to The Stranger’s article directly above the text I quoted from it, and clearly indicated with punctuation that the text came from that article — not from my own personal experience. Your continued hopeless failures at reading comprehension, while sadly hilarious, are nobody’s fault but yours.
… dug out [of] the trash can.
Hip kids here in 1998 call it a “web archive,” Daddy-O.
Back to the subject at hand: When I lived in Seattle I also payed monorail taxes (a scheme very similar to King County Prop 1) at least until I wised up and registered my vehicles in another city. I expect I would have got about the same value from King County Prop 1 as I got from the monorail taxes I paid. ZERO
Eastside Sanity says
Liberals will say anything to raise tax, then spend it and raise more tax. It never ends with these leftwing-nutjobs