I received a campaign brochure today on Tacoma Proposition 1 dedicating utility tax revenues for roads. Why? The City Council hasn’t done its job for a decade to maintain the city infrastructures. Prop. 1 is an inappropriate tax on the people’s company (Tacoma Public Utilities), which was created to produce the lowest cost energy and services possible for Tacoma households.
Would the council propose a ballot measure for a 25-cent-per-gallon gas tax to replace 18,000 utility poles, improve 46 substations and resurface dams? No, it wouldn’t, because vehicle users aren’t responsible to support a utility company with gas revenues. Neither is TPU supposed to maintain or build roads for the city.
Prop. 1 is a regressive tax for the wrong purpose on seniors, students, single parents, middle-class households, businesses and professionals.
A no vote will tell the City Council not to misuse taxing authority. The taxpayers are not stupid. A Dedicated Funds Account is a start for infrastructure, so fund it with general funds until an honest way to generate new revenues from users or with bonds can be found. Vote no on Prop. 1.