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Letter: Get the facts about long-term care tax

| October 15, 2021 1:00 AM

I am writing in response to “Long-term care tax looms for nearly all Washington workers” by Charles H. Featherstone, Aug. 9.

I appreciate the efforts of Mr. Featherstone and the Herald to inform readers about Washington state’s new long-term care act and the associated payroll tax. I would like to add some additional information that may be helpful for Washington voters to know.

As a reminder, in January, every Washington employee will pay the tax on their income, whether they live in Idaho, Oregon, or Washington. Only those living in the state will be eligible for benefits.

This means that a lot of people will be forced to pay this tax, and never receive a dollar of benefit.

Thankfully, strong and bipartisan opposition to this measure continues to grow. Last month, over 20 senators from both parties wrote Governor Inslee asking him to suspend the program. In another appeal, 160 businesses and organizations spanning every industry in the state have shared their concern.

Recently, a group of citizens filed initiative I-1436 that would make it optional to participate in the state-run long-term care program – allowing any employee to opt in or out, at any time.

Please learn more about this initiative by visiting restorewashington.org – and consider signing I-1436 today.

Edmund O. Schweitzer III, Ph.D.

President and Chief Technology

Officer,

Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories,

Pullman