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Daily News editorial

Poaching story update

(No Thumb)Many readers have called asking why there isn’t any ongoing coverage about the poaching case. We are covering everything related to the case as it occurs, but not much has been happening.

The defendants have been charged with crimes and the case is making its way through the courts.

TDN reporter Zack Hale will have stories coming soon.

To read what has been reported visit www.tdn.com.

City of Seattle

(Thumbs down)The city of Seattle wants to implement an income tax, which has been ruled unconstitutional more than once by the State Supreme Court.

A week ago, city of Seattle officials were in the courtroom trying to explain why they should be allowed to impose an income tax on city residents.

We thought it might be good reading to pass along some observations from Jason Mercier of the Washington Policy Center, and others who were in the courtroom.

According to Mercier, Seattle brought 13 attorneys into the courtroom. Why would anyone need 13 attorneys?

The argument the city is trying to make is that income is not property, even though the State Supreme Court has ruled income is property.

The city of Seattle attorneys positioned the income tax as a “transaction tax” for the benefit of living in Seattle. Don’t citizens already pay property taxes for the privilege of living in a given city?

Former Washington State Attorney General Rob McKenna testified at the hearing as well. McKenna made the point that an income tax already has been ruled unconstitutional, and the lower court is bound by the Supreme Court’s prior decision, so there’s not much to argue about.

David Dewhirst, the Freedom Foundation’s chief litigation attorney, said in a press release, “To allow this income tax to stand would require the trial court to abandon 80 years of clear precedent and ignore clear taxing limits imposed by the Constitution and the Legislature.”

On the other side, the Economic Opportunity Institute (EOI) told the court to declare state law banning a local income tax unconstitutional and that it would like to see a statewide income tax implemented.

What is at stake here is the future of the state of Washington. Washingtonians voted down income tax proposals nine different times. The citizens have spoken.

Regardless of what the taxpaying citizens want, a minority group of liberal Democrats want to somehow push through an income tax. These folks basically want a copy of your debit card so they can dip into your account to pay for their latest scheme such as “safe injection sites.”

If you are not keeping tabs on this issue, you should.

Holiday shopping hours

(Thumbs down)The holidays are family time. Many people only see close friends or relatives during the holiday season, but it continues to be a challenge for any family who has members working in the retail industry.

Several years ago, a few retailers started opening stores on Thanksgiving Day and many other stores followed suit. Unfortunately, the trend of stores being open on Thanksgiving Day continues.

With retailers being open on Thanksgiving Day, it is hard for folks to take even a short trip to be with their families. Many retailers open in the late afternoon and keep employees working into the early morning hours. Then workers get a short time to sleep and many go right back to work for Black Friday.

We wonder if being open on Thanksgiving Day increases revenue for retailers or just spreads out the same amount of sales over more days?

We’re not sure how much sense it makes to open brick and mortar store locations on Thanksgiving Day when customers can still buy products online.

While we doubt anything will change, we’d like to see retailers go back to being closed on holidays so families can spend time together.

Port of Kalama

(Thumbs Up)The Port of Kalama has filed a $1.8 million dollar lawsuit against the state of Washington. The lawsuit is an effort to overturn the state’s decision to rescind shorelines permits that previously were issued.

The Port contends the Environmental Impact Statement completed for the project followed state law, while the Shorelines Hearings Board said the EIS fell short of what was needed and therefore permits were taken away.

What’s happening here is that Washington state officials appear to want every project to suffer through a “cradle to grave” Environmental Impact Statement, but there is no law requiring projects to do so.

Unfortunately, one of these companies wrongly denied permits over and over again will have to keep litigating against the state of Washington in an effort to clear a pathway forward for business.

State of Washington agencies and officials have clearly shown a willingness to choose “politics over policy” as it relates to business and permits.

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