Rep. Sutherland says it is time to eliminate state property taxes

Property owners from around Washington state are in shock this winter after receiving their property taxes and Rep. Robert J. Sutherland decided it was time to draft legislation to eliminate the state portion of property taxes.

“I am hearing from constituents and people across the state, who are struggling to pay their property taxes. Our state tax collections are at a record high and it is time to start the discussion on how to return some of the taxpayers' hard-earned dollars back to them,” said Sutherland, R-Granite Falls. “The Democrat majority party in Olympia has implemented a number of new or increased taxes over the last few sessions and they all fall back on our taxpayers. Consumers and residents of Washington state pay the price in the end. It is time to do something positive for them in the form of significant tax relief.”

Sutherland's House Bill 2960 would gradually eliminate the state portion of property tax over a four-year period, leaving county and local levy property taxes unaffected.

“With projected state tax revenue increases in the billions of dollars over the next four years, there should be no need to cut current programs, although we should always be looking to cut programs that are ineffective and not working well.

By taking a gradual, methodical approach to this reduction the state will have plenty of time to adjust, if necessary. Moving forward if we find the outbreak of COVID-19 reduces state tax revenues, then cutting state property taxes would help stimulate a struggling economy,” said Sutherland. “This will help us prioritize our spending and be more prudent with our dollars, especially with the majority party spending taxpayer money at an unprecedented pace. I am also excited about helping our seniors and those on fixed incomes stay in their homes, and providing a solution to our affordable housing crisis.”

Sutherland introduced House Bill 2960 towards the end of the 2020 session after witnessing Olympia Democrats spending most of the $2.4 billion surplus, with no tax relief for the taxpayers. Sutherland voted “no” on the operating budget because of the increased spending and no tax relief for Washingtonian's.

The bill will be reintroduced at the start of the 2021 session this January and Sutherland is hopeful the public that wants property tax relief make their voices heard so the bill would be granted a public hearing.

“I will have this legislation ready to go at the beginning of the next session, so it is sitting on the House Finance Committee chair's desk. Then we can work to get it scheduled for a public hearing,” said Sutherland.

The 2021 Legislature will begin on Jan. 10.

Watch Sutherland's video explaining his plan here.

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Washington State House Republican Communications
houserepublicans.wa.gov