2019 General Election Endorsement Guide
First, A Quick Word…
We Want You!
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PCOs can be elected or appointed. They represent and help inform their neighbors, identify voters, and learn key organizing skills. If you want to become involved, this is a great place to begin!
Initiative 976 is a perennial initiative from Tim Eyman that guts funding for much-needed repairs and maintenance on roads, outdated bridges and overpasses, as well as voter-approved improvements and expansions to transit, including light-rail. Vote NO on I-976.
Referendum 88 is the public vote on I-1000, which allows affirmative action in public education, public employment, and public contracting without the use of caps or quotas. This will increase fairness for veterans, small business owners, women, and people of color applying for public employment, seeking public contracts, and applying to public universities. Vote APPROVED on R-88.
Senate Joint Resolution No. 8200:
Senate Joint Resolution Number 8200 is an amendment to the state constitution, adding “catastrophic incidents” to the specified times of emergency the legislature can take certain actions to ensure continuity of state and local governmental operations. This amendment is a common-sense update acknowledging that there are major events apart from war that could interrupt normal government services. Vote APPROVED on Senate Joint Resolution No. 8200.
Advisory Votes 20-31:
The Advisory Vote was created in 2007 by I-960 from Tim Eyman. It requires that any bill from the state legislature that increases revenue to a non-binding advisory vote, including self-funding projects and closing tax loopholes. These “advisory votes” are essentially push-polls, designed by Eyman to influence public opinion. They are deceptive and a waste of taxpayer money. We’ve endorsed a MAINTAINED vote on all 12 of these, and encourage the legislature to remove these in the future. For more information, visit Permanent Defense.
Advisory Vote 20
Advisory Vote 20 relates to Second Substitute House Bill 1087, which creates a new long-term insurance benefit for seniors who cannot afford the care they need, paid for by a premium on wages.
Advisory Vote 21
Advisory Vote 21 relates to Engrossed Third Substitute House Bill 1324, which extends a reduced rate on Business and Occupation (B&O) tax on timber products, and extends and expands an existing surcharge on timber products.
Advisory Vote 22
Advisory Vote 22 relates to House Bill 1652, which defines paint stewardship programs to reduce the environmental impact of leftover architectural paints. These stewardship programs are funded by a per-can assessment paid by the producers, retailers or distributors of architectural paint.
Advisory Vote 23
Advisory Vote 23 relates to Engrossed Second Substitute House Bill 1873, which classifies electronic cigarettes, vape pens, vape liquids, and similar products as tobacco products and taxes them as such. ESSB also creates the Foundational Public Services Account which can be used for foundational health services, tobacco, vapor product, and nicotine control and prevention, to support increased access and training of public health professionals at public health programs, and for enforcement by the Liquor and Cannabis Board. Half of the funds from the tax are deposited into the Andy Hill Cancer Research Endowment Fund Match Transfer Account, up to a cap of $10 million per year. The other half, and the total above the cap, fund the Foundational Public Services Account.
Advisory Vote 24
Advisory Vote 24 relates to House Bill 2158 increases funding for higher education, including financial aid, raises for community college staff, and new student loan program called the Washington College Grant, which replaces the State Need Grant. The State Need Grant has historically been underfunded, unable to provide money to thousands of eligible students. The increased investment is funded by increased taxes on high-income tech companies, which are greatly benefited by the investment in a highly-educated workforce.
Advisory Vote 25
Advisory Vote 25 relates to Substitute House Bill 2167, which increases the business and occupation (B&O) tax on financial institutions reporting more than $1 billion in net income the prior year, by adding a tax of 1.2% in addition to the general B&O tax of 1.5% they were already subject to.
Advisory Vote 26
Advisory Vote 26 relates to Substitute Senate Bill 5581, which responds to a Supreme Court decision requiring retailers to charge sales tax in all states. SSB 5581 eliminates a tax advantage enjoyed by out-of-state sellers.
Advisory Vote 27
Advisory Vote 27 relates to Engrossed Substitute Senate Bill 5993, which updates the Model Toxics Control Act. MTCA has supported efforts to clean up 7000 of Washington’s 13,000 known or suspected contaminated sites. ESSB 5993 increases funding to clean up contaminated sites in the state and improves transparency.
Advisory Vote 28
Advisory Vote 28 relates to Engrossed Substitute Senate Bill 5997, which closes a loophole allowing many out-of-state shoppers to avoid paying sales tax in Washington State. Non-residents may still request remittance by the State for items purchased in Washington for use outside of Washington up to once per year.
Advisory Vote 29
Advisory Vote 29 relates to Engrossed Substitute Senate Bill 5998, which makes our Real Estate Excise Tax more progressive. Under the new law:
- Property sales under $500,000 are taxed at 1.1%,
- Sales more than $500,000 up to $1.5 million are taxed at 1.28%,
- Sales greater than 1.5 million and equal to or lower than 3 million are taxed at 2.75%
- Sales over $3 million are taxed at 3%
Previously, all sales were taxed at 1.28%.
Advisory Vote 30
Advisory Vote 30 relates to Engrossed Substitute Bill 6004. Currently, travel agents and tour operators enjoy a reduced B&O tax of 0.275%, compared to the 1.5% for other types of services and activities. ESSB 6004 reduces the tax break on travel agents and tour operators with annual gross income over $250,000, changing their rate from 0.275% to 0.9%.
Advisory Vote 31
Advisory Vote 31 relates to Engrossed Senate Bill 6016, which closes several tax loopholes for International Investment Management Services (IIMS’s). The loopholes were initially intended to reduce tax disadvantage for IIMS’s operating within the state, but the legislature found their definition was overly-broad and wrote ESB 6016 to narrow requirements to benefit from the loophole by requiring IIMS’s claiming the exemption have at least 25% of their employees in Washington State, at least ten offices across at least eight countries, at least 500 full-time employees, and a worldwide gross revenue of at least $400 million, among other requirements.
Proposition 1 (Medic One):
Proposition 1 renews an expiring levy funding emergency medical services through a property tax. This is a common-sense proposition to keep critical emergency medical services funded at their current levels. Vote APPROVED on Proposition 1.
Port of Seattle
Port of Seattle Commissioner, Position 2:
Grant Degginger has served previously on Bellevue City Council and as Mayor of Bellevue, where he helped lead the efforts to expand light rail, increase parks and open spaces, and led an effort to reduce the city’s greenhouse gas emissions. Degginger was also previously appointed to the Public Disclosure Commission by then-Governor Gregoir, where he fought for open and transparent elections and government. His priorities on the Port of Seattle Commission will be: fixing Seattle-Tacoma airport by improving access, reducing lines, and implementing remote-baggage check in Downtown Seattle and on the Eastside; keeping our seaport competitive by making investments to sustain and grow the port while implementing important environmental reforms; and reforming port contracting to be transparent and accountable to residents by providing greater opportunities for local businesses, small businesses, and minority- and women-owned businesses, as well as providing transparency into the port’s budget process.
Other Endorsements: https://www.grantforport.com/endorsements/
Port of Seattle Commissioner, Position 5:
Incumbent Fred Felleman has 30 years of experience as a conservation leader. Since 2016, Felleman has helped found the Energy and Sustainability Committee, which he now co-chairs. He also works as the Vice President of the Port Commission, and represents the Port on the Governor’s Blue Task Force, which aims to decarbonize the marine industry. His goals for his next term include working to reduce climate impacts, expanding opportunities for women- and minority-owned businesses, seeking environmental and economic justice for disproportionately impacted communities, championing apprenticeship and internship programs to inspire youth into port-related jobs, and accessibility, inclusivity, and being responsive to community interests.
Other Endorsements: https://www.fredforport.com/endorsements-1
City of Duvall
Proposition 1 (Transportation):
Proposition 1 funds key parks improvements, school safety resources, and technology improvements for dangerously outdated city infrastructure. Vote YES on Proposition 1.
City of Kirkland
City of Kirkland Council, Position 2:
Kelli Curtis has served on the Houghton Community Council, the Kirkland Park Board and the Housing Strategy Advisory Group. Curtis has been endorsed by an overwhelming majority of people she’s served on these boards and commissions with, as well as by many local elected officials. Curtis aims to bring thoughtful, strategic focus on Kirkland’s growth and livability with an emphasis on creating a sustainable, accessible community.
Other Endorsements: https://www.kellicurtisforkirklandcouncil.com/endorsements
City of Kirkland Council, Position 5:
Neal Black is running on a platform of affordable housing through a diverse mix of housing types, inclusiveness in our communities, planning for sustainability, and increasing transportation choices to reduce emissions and congestion. Black serves on the Houghton Community Council and King County Bar Association as a member of the Board of Trustees, and has previously served as the chair of the King County Bar Association Public Policy Committee. Black will bring strong values and deep experience to the Kirkland City Council.
Other Endorsements: https://www.votenealblack.com/view-endorsements
City of Kirkland Council, Position 6:
Amy Falcone has been a dedicated volunteer and organizer in Kirkland. She’s served as Kirkland Human Services Commission Co-Chair, Finn Hill Neighborhood Alliance Board Member, Neighborhood Safety Program Panel Member, and Thoreau Elementary School PTA President. In these roles, Falcone has a track-record of actively seeking input from underrepresented communities. Her goals include making Kirkland more walkable, affordable, and safer.
Other Endorsements: https://www.amyfalcone.org/endorsements
City of Redmond
City of Redmond, Mayor:
Current City Councilmember Angela Birney is a former middle school science teacher as well as an active volunteer whose work included the Lake Washington Schools Foundation and the Redmond Parks and Trails Commission. Birney’s areas of focus are: livability – anyone who works in Redmond should be able to live in Redmond; environment – it’s important to work to preserve the natural beauty of Redmond, as well as work to fight climate change; and community – by creating an interactive city culture, where collaboration is valued, Redmond will benefit from the sum of its best ideas.
Other Endorsements: https://electangelabirney.com/endorsements/
City of Redmond Council, Position 1:
Varisha Khan is running on a platform of equality and inclusion, environmental sustainability, efficient transportation and linking communities. Khan’s experience includes work in communications at various local nonprofits, focusing on making media and politics more representative and inclusive.
Other Endorsements: https://www.electvarishakhan.com/endorsements
City of Redmond Council, Position 3:
Jessica Forsythe has a wealth of non-profit experience to draw from, including working on the League of Women Voters Seattle-King County executive committee, grassroots organizing on I-1000 and I-1639, and too many others to list here. Additionally, her professional life as a small business owner has given her the decision-making skills needed as a City Councilmember. Forsythe’s focus on local business, environment, community, and infrastructure are just what Redmond City Council needs.
Other Endorsements: https://www.voteforsythe.com/endorsements
City of Redmond Council, Position 5:
Vanessa Kritzer currently serves on the City of Redmond Planning Commission, working for inclusive, sustainable, equitable solutions to Redmond’s unique challenges. She has devoted her career to working for social and environmental justice and driving public sector innovation, and hopes to continue that work on the Redmond City Council. Kritzer’s experience includes working on international human rights and national environmental policy in DC, serving on the UW Board of Regents, and working on public sector technology at Microsoft. Kritzer also serves on the boards of the Anti-Defamation League – Pacific Northwest and the National Women’s Political Caucus.
Other Endorsements: https://www.electvanessakritzer.com/endorsements
City of Redmond Council, Position 7::
Carlos Jimenez brings broad experience including working as a Professor of Community Development, working on Bellevue’s Latino Police Advisory Council and Redmond’s Community Police Advisory Council, serving on the executive board of several worker advocacy groups, and as Founder and Executive Director at Centro Cultural Mexicano in Redmond. Jimenez’s platform is focused on affordable housing, innovation in transportation, promoting healthy communities, social, racial, and economic justice, and strong environmental protections.
Other Endorsements: https://electcarlosjimenez.com/endorsements-1
City of Sammamish
City of Sammamish Council, Position 2:
Karen McKnight has previously served as president of a PTSA and president of the Sammamish Chamber of Commerce, as well as CEO of a local real estate franchise. McKnight aims to represent all Sammamish residents by taking up ignored infrastructure projects, such as transportation and storm water management. McKnight has also pledged to protect open spaces, parks, and the city’s tree canopy.
Other Endorsements: https://www.mcknightforsammamish.com/endorsements
City of Sammamish Council, Position 4:
Karen Howe is on the Children and Youth Advisory Board for King County, and the president of the nonprofit SammamishFriends.org, which promotes local conservation and sustainability efforts. Her prior private-sector experience includes work as a director at Microsoft and a VP at AOL. Her goals on council are to champion parks and natural spaces, provide space roads, sidewalks, and bike paths, broaden regional outreach, and providing transparency in the management of city funds. Howe recognizes the evolution of Sammamish, and sees a path forward through balanced, planned growth.
City of Sammamish Council, Position 6:
Rituja Indapure currently serves on the City of Sammamish Planning Commission, the Sammamish YMCA Advisory Board, and the Washington State Women’s Commission. Her platform, rooted in community engagement, focuses on sustainable growth via active planning and enforcement of current rules, protecting environmentally-sensitive areas, promoting healthy trails and greenspaces, and reducing energy consumption and emissions.
Other Endorsements: http://electrituja.org/endorsements/
City of Woodinville
City of Woodinville Council, Position 6:
Nicolas Duchastel de Montrouge
Nicolas Duchastel de Montrouge is running on a platform he calls “Keep Woodinville/Moving Forward” which aims to maintain Woodinville’s small-town feel while managing growth in a responsible manner with great input from local residents. Duchastel’s primary issues are: ensuring the environment is the highest priority of the city; improving transportation via various modes, both for residents and the growing tourism sector; improving access to affordable housing – this is not an issue unique to Woodinville, so Duchastel intends to address this in part via regional partnerships; and government transparency, based on 21st century technology and accountability to residents. Duchastel is currently a member of the Woodinville Planning Commission, and has previously volunteered at Parents Active Cooperative Education (PACE), worked on the Northshore School District’s Start Time Task Force, and cofounded Éducation Française of Greater Seattle, a weekend school for French-speaking students.
Other Endorsements: https://votefornicolas.com/endorsements/
City of Woodinville Council, Position 7:
Paul Hagen has served as vice chair for both Parents Active Cooperative Education (PACE) at Woodmoor Elementary School and Woodinville’s Parks and Recreation Commission, and currently serves on Woodinville’s Public Spaces Commission. Hagen plans to prioritize sustainable growth through a walkable downtown and improved accessibility while protecting neighboring agricultural lands and preserving Woodinville’s character and charm, all through future-facing planning and collaborative decision-making. He will also protect the environment, by both working to preserve greenspaces and a commitment to green energy, reduced carbon emissions, and environmentally-friendly building practices. Finally, Hagen aims to make the city government more accessible, responsive, and effective by prioritizing people, collaborating, and listening.
Other Endorsements: https://www.hagenforcouncil.com/endorsements
Lake Washington School District #414
LWSD #414, Director District 5:
Siri Bliesner has served on the Board of Directors for eight years, and is currently the School Board President for LWSD. During Bliesner’s service on the school board, on-time graduation has increased to an all-time high. Her priorities on the board include: providing learning environments that are physically, emotionally, and socially healthy; improving equitable opportunities for students; expanding programs for highly-capable students; innovating education; and building partnerships and connections with parents, the community, the legislature, and surrounding districts.
Other Endorsements: http://siribliesner.com/endorsements/
Special Purpose Districts
King County Fire Protection District No. 45
Fire Protection District No. 45 Proposition 1:
This measure allows King County Fire Protection District #45 (Duvall Fire) to collect a Benefit Service Charge (BSC) based on a number of factors relating to fire risk, including square footage, primary use, and presence of fire sprinklers, among others. The proposition authorizes the BSC for 6 years, and prohibits the fire district from imposing an additional property tax for the same time. We endorse a YES vote on this proposition.
Northshore Parks and Recreation Service Area (NPRSA)
NPRSA Proposition 1:
This measure authorizes a property tax of $0.04 per $1,000 of assessed value – $20/year for a $500,000 home – to fund maintenance and operations for the Northshore Parks and Recreation Service Area (NPRSA). NPRSA maintains and operates the Northshore Senior Center and Northshore Health and Wellness Center buildings and grounds. We endorse a YES vote on this proposition.
Printable Endorsement Guides