State Supreme Court: Car tab measure to remain on hold

OLYMPIA, Wash. — The Washington state Supreme Court has ruled that a voter-approved $30 car tab measure will remain on hold while a legal fight over the initiative’s constitutionality plays out.

The state Attorney General’s office filed an emergency motion on Monday asking for the court to allow Initiative 976 to go into effect, saying voters’ wishes are being “stymied” by a King County Superior Court judge’s decision to stop it from taking effect while a legal fight over the initiative’s constitutionality plays out.

The state Supreme Court on Wednesday denied the Attorney General’s office’s request.

On Tuesday, initiative sponsor Tim Eyman and his allies filed their own request to vacate the lower court’s injunction and move the case to the state Supreme Court.  The Supreme Court also dismissed that request on Wednesday, according to The Seattle Times. 

Voters last month approved I-976, the statewide measure that calls for lowering many vehicle registration fees to $30, rolling back car-tab taxes that fund Sound Transit and doing away with local car-tab fees.

Seattle, King County and a handful of other groups sued, saying the measure is unconstitutional.

King County Superior Court Judge Marshall Ferguson sided with the groups last week, temporarily blocking I-976 from taking effect but not yet ruling on the initiative itself.

Much of the measure was previously set to take effect Dec. 5.

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