Campaign News

Hello carbon tax friends: We’ve got signature-gathering trainings and other events coming up all over the state in the days ahead (Bellingham! Vancouver! Ellensburg! Yakima! Spokane! Bellevue! Tacoma!) so check out our Events page for details. And read on for an introduction to our six new staffmembers, for our new crowdfunding video to help raise money for all those staffmembers (!),for terrific positive stories about how Carbon Washington is advancing the cause of climate action, and for our Earth Day 22 campaign where we’re asking YOU to get 22 signatures from friends and family by Earth Day, W April 22. Plus I’ll be doing a Reddit AMA on T April 21 at 11am and we’ve got a new feature, “Tales from the trails”, with stories about signature gathering… send your tales in to or post them on the Comments section of the blog!

The power of being positive

Carbon Washington’s positive message is beginning to resonate throughout the state! Here are some examples:

  • In an article in Crosscut, House environment committee chair Joe Fitzgibbon (D-West Seattle/Vashon) credits CarbonWA for giving new life to Governor Inslee’s climate bill during legislative negotiations. We’ll keep you posted if we hear anything more in the months ahead (and to be honest the governor’s bill still face very long odds), but we hope you’ll help hold their feet to the fire by pushing forward with Carbon Washington!
  • Bob Jeffers-Schroder walked into the CarbonWA office on Monday with 5 full petition sheets (100 signatures!) and picked up a bunch of blank sheets. (His goal: 1000 signatures by the end of the month. His best signature-gathering location: outside the Fred Meyer in Greenwood.)
  • Erika Shriner of Climate Action Bainbridge reports that four people who had been lurking on their email list for years showed up in person for their latest meeting because they were excited to make tangible progress with the Carbon Washington effort. (See also “Bainbridge Group Seeks to Get Carbon Tax Initiative on State Ballot” and don’t forget the Bainbridge signature-gathering training on April 29, register here!)
  • Carbon Washington has been named “the people’s climate campaign” by Patrick Mazza, one of the founders of Climate Solutions who is now a blogger and 350 Seattle activist. We’ll do our best to live up to that moniker!
  • A great op-ed in the NY Times (“When taxes aren’t a drag”) emphasizes the importance of the federal Earned Income Tax Credit… which our policy amplifies with a 25% bump-up that will provide up to $1500 a year for 400,000 working families in Washington State. See details here on how funding a 25% Working Families Rebate and cutting the state sales by a full point will be the biggest improvement to the progressivity of the Washington State tax system since the 1977 ballot measure that exempted groceries from the sales tax.

Meet our six new staffmembers

Please welcome and reach out to the six new staffmembers (!) on the campaign:

Their job is to coordinate signature-gathering efforts and otherwise push the campaign forward, so please email them with requests, feedback, or just to say Hello!

Support our crowdfunding video to add staff hours statewide

To help raise money to pay our staff we’ve launched a new crowdfunding video, starring CarbonWA staff, volunteers, friends, pets… even a baby! Check out the video and make a contribution to win great prizes! Our goal is to raise $10,000 by the end of the month to add staff hours across the state; your donation of any size will help us expand our people-powered campaign! (And by the way if you want to track our budgeting so far you can view our latest Public Disclosure Commission reports; last month, for example, we spent about $10,000 on wages, rent, and supplies. That’s going to rise because of our six new hires, but we’re committed to running a lean campaign and will squeeze every penny out of your donations!)

Earth Day 22: We’re asking YOU to get 22 signatures from friends and family by April 22

We know that not everybody can be like Bob Jeffers-Schroder, who’s gathered 100 signatures and aims to get 1000 by the end of the month. But everybody has friends and neighbors, and so—in honor of Advisory Board member Denis Hayes, national coordinator of the first Earth Day on April 22, 1970we’re asking everybody (yes, that means YOU) to get 22 signatures from friends and neighbors on or before W April 22. Here’s how it works: Go here right now and give us your name and address; we’ll mail you two signature petitions (enough for 22 signatures plus some extra-credit opportunities) and a stamped self-addressed return envelope; you get 22 signatures, then sign the declaration on the back of the petitions, put the petitions in the return envelope, put the envelope in a mailbox, and then give yourself a pat on the back. Hint: Sign it yourself and you’re already almost 5% done; add a significant other and you’re pushing 10%!! That’s all it takes, so sign up here for Earth Day 22!

Tales from the trails

Ben Silesky and I went to the Mariners opening day to collect signatures. Ben’s favorite story was about a woman (not a supporter) who turned away scornfully and said “You should marry my daughter!” My favorite story was about how I’d worked really hard to hone my little pitch (“Hello, I’m a volunteer with a campaign to tackle climate change. Do you want to help put that on the ballot?”) and then I met a group of young men and right after I started into my pitch one fellow grabbed a petition sheet out of my hands and cackled “Sure, I’ll sign that sh**!” Come to think of it, that’s a pretty good summary of signature-gathering: you think it’s about having detailed policy conversations with your fellow citizens, but it’s really much more about “Hello, please sign this sh**!”

As always, comments are welcome on the blog, or via Facebook or Twitter.



Comments ( 3 )

  • Robert Beekman says:

    Glad to see this happening and to get in the campaign. One question: The WA B&O tax is completely irrational and unfair. So I’m glad to see some of the Carbon Tax revenue will be used to reduce or eliminate that tax for WA manufacturers. But what about all the other kinds of business — including private freight and passenger businesses, which are going to be hit by higher fuel costs but not get the B&O relief of Boeing and other manufacturers? What is the thinking behind this tax reduction for manufacturing only? Or am I misunderstanding what is meant?

    • Yoram Bauman says:

      Hi Robert, thanks for your question. See here for a detailed answer, the basics being that limiting the B&O reductions to manufacturing allows us to focus on the Energy Intensive Trade Exposed businesses that are most likely to be placed at a competitive disadvantage by the carbon tax. (Also note that the B&O tax overall raises about $3.3 billion a year, which is way too big for our carbon tax to backfill. The manufacturing portion of the B&O is much more reasonable, about $200m a year.)

  • Basilia says:

    I got 32 signatures on Capitol Hill on a sunny Sunday afternoon, so easy and fun!
    then rainy day outside PCC in Fremont at lunch time,
    5 signatures!
    both in 30 minutes
    rain and the hurry of lunchtime
    not good for signatures!!

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