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I appreciated Gene Balk’s excellent piece on Washington state’s reliance upon the sales tax and the Op-Ed describing new rules on addressing carbon pollution.

As stated in the article on sales tax, we are improving. While it was 86 percent of the total state tax in 1948, it has dropped to 78 percent. The reliance on the sales tax should be an embarrassment to the residents of Washington, as it places the greatest tax burden on the poorest in the state. Yet, the electorate has not seemed to care, given the defeats of initiatives to raise an income tax.

The Op-Ed explained Gov. Jay Inslee and the clean energy movement’s proposal to amend the state administrative code to have Washington be at the forefront of the clean energy revolution. The quote, “The stakes are high — a strong rule has the potential to set a national precedent for effective climate action” shows the direction they desire to go.

Surprising, thanks to some very forward-thinkers, both the issue of sales tax and carbon pollution are combined in Initiative 732, which will be on the state ballot this fall. If approved by the voters, carbon would be taxed and the income would be directed back to the people through a state sales-tax reduction, a working-family rebate and by effectively eliminating the business and occupation tax.

This is a perfect opportunity for the voting public to take action on these two important tax issues.

Tim Hostetler, Bellingham