This Isn’t The First Time Courts Have Overturned $30 Car Tabs
Twenty years ago, Gary Locke was the Governor, and Tim Eyman had led I-695 to a win, giving Washington residents $30 car tabs. Despite being opposed by Boeing, Microsoft and nearly every newspaper in the state, it stuck.
Then it expired in 2002, but was renewed by Gov. Locke. The battle continued in 2016 after voters in the state passed what was called ST3, or Sound Transit Plan 3, which would provide light rail, bus and other public transportation links between as many as 20 cities in the Puget Sound Corridor.
However, in 2017, and noted by Senator Steve O'Ban (R-Pierce County region) drivers noticed their car tab fees doubled, and even tripled in some cases, depending upon their vehicles. Legal and legislative action began to be taken against Sound Transit (Puget Sound Transit Authority) over their taxation authority.
Questions were raised if voters knew the full scope of what was planned for the ST3 project, and how it would impact the rest of the state but only serve King, Pierce and Snohomish Counties.
That's why Eyman started I-976 and it passed in November 2019. Then the lawsuits began, including Inslee freezing some construction projects in what was viewed as a retaliatory measure.
And we come to today, when the State Supreme Court struck down the latest effort in this twenty year battle, which is not over yet.