On February 22, 2019, Tim Eyman, a frequent initiative sponsor in Washington, announced the start of the 90-day signature petition drive for Referendum Measure 80. Eyman’s slogan for the measure is, “Give Them Nothing.”
Referendum Measure 80 would ask voters to approve or reject salary increases for state elected officials set by the Washington Citizens’ Commission on Salaries for Elected Officials (WCCSEO). The salary raises were approved for the nine statewide executive branch officers, members of the state legislature, and state judges. The first raise would become effective on September 1, 2019, and another raise would become effective on September 1, 2020.
The raises were voted on and approved by the WCCSEO on February 4, 2019. Signatures for the veto referendum are due on May 7, 2019.
On his website, Eyman wrote, “Politicians are asking for a 20% bonus from a commission of ‘regular citizens’ (one of them is actually the husband of a state supreme court justice!). It’s totally rigged… Help us veto this massive pay-off scam.”
Eyman is also the sponsor of Initiative 976, an initiative to limit annual vehicle registration renewal fees to $30, often referred to as the $30 Car Tabs initiative.
From 1914 through 2018, 37 veto referendums appeared on the ballot in Washington. The last veto referendum was on the ballot in 2012. In 81 percent of cases (30 of 37), the veto referendum resulted in the targeted bill being repealed. Conversely, 19 percent (seven of 37) of veto referendum measures resulted in the targeted law being upheld.