WA ELECTIONS: $30 car tab measure passing, slashing road funds

Nearly 56 percent of Washington voters are backing Initiative 976, which would slash car tabs to $30 and leave the state and local governments scrambling to pay for road paving and other transportation projects.

Sponsored by Tim Eyman, the measure would cap most taxes paid through annual vehicle registration at $30 and largely revoke the authority of state and local governments to add new taxes and fees without voter approval.  I-976 would also repeal taxes and fees that were already in place, which could cost the state and local governments more than $4 billion in revenue over the next six years, according to the state Office of Financial Management.

King County, the state’s most populous, was strongly rejecting I-976 but most other counties were approving it by healthy margins.

More than 60 cities use car-tab fees to pay for road construction, bus service, and sidewalks.

The state also charges fees to help pay for programs including Washington State Patrol traffic enforcement, highway maintenance, ferry operations and maintenance of county roads and bridges. (AP)

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