Seattle Busted

Seattle must now find a new source of income after taxes for street lighting is deemed illegal.
November 16, 2003, 5am PST | Adam Weiss
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The City of Seattle, Washington found itself in a precarious position. With a budget deficit of $24 million, it must now cut a $6 million-a-year funding source. Deemed unconstitutional, a City tax on street lighting is now null, and residents may receive refunds from the last 3 years.

Though the City Light tax cost a resident an average of only 60 cents a month, "...the money raised was ostensibly allocated to pay for a regulatory purpose (lighting streets), there was no relationship between the fee imposed on City Light customers and the streetlight service they received," Supreme Court Justice Mary Fairhurst wrote.

Thanks to Adam Weiss

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Published on Friday, November 14, 2003 in The Seattle Times
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