October 20, 2020

Change in the Real Estate Excise Tax (REET)

SB 6424 and HB 3179, which would expand uses of local real estate excise tax, could be voted on in either the House or Senate as soon as today. Please contact your legislator IMMEDIATELY and ask them to vote NO. Senate members will be voting on SB 6424, House members will be voting on HB 3179.Send a letter to the following decision maker(s):
Your Representative (if you live in Washington)
Your State Senator (if you live in Washington)

Below is the sample letter:
Subject: Preserve Infrastructure – Vote NO on SB 6424 and HB 3179

Dear [decision maker name automatically inserted here],

Please oppose SB 6424 and HB 3179. These bills would expand the allowed uses of the local second .25% real estate excise tax.

This additional tax on home sales was adopted with the commitment that it would be dedicated to provide infrastructure necessary to implement the Growth Management Act. Now, local governments are seeking to divert this funding for operating expenses or for public buildings that can be funded through bond authority or other mechanisms. The real estate excise tax is a volatile revenue stream that is ill-suited for operating expenses, and other funding options exist that are not being utilized by local governments.

Diverting local REET revenue from basic infrastructure means fewer construction projects that create jobs and tax revenue, and undermines the ability of local governments to accommodate growth as required by the Growth Management Act. Please vote NO on SB 6424 and HB 3179.