LETTER: Initiative aims to keep food and beverages more affordable

The recent letter claiming that Washington State Initiative 1634 – Yes to Affordable Groceries — is misleading at face value and conveniently overlooks what the measure actually says as well as the long list of people and organizations that are early supporters.

When you get down to it, the language of the measure is pretty clear. It prohibits additional fees on all food and beverages, which in this current tax environment not only makes sense, but also seems pretty necessary. Washington has the most regressive tax structure in the country, and city and county leaders have continued to look for new revenue that hits those who can least afford it. Initiative 1634 is more than just ending taxes on soda — it is a necessary proactive measure to take all foods like meats and produce, and everyday beverages like juices and sports drinks off the table when our elected officials consider ways to raise taxes. I-1634 also has the broad backing of groups like labor unions, farmers and cattlemen, small businesses and large business and statewide associations. It’s rare that you get these diverse groups to agree on anything in this state — but they’re behind this one measure.

In this election season, there will be lots of misdirection and efforts to undermine the voices of the voters and give politicians more power to impose taxes. Initiative1634 is our opportunity to take a stand to keep our food and beverages more affordable and to prevent any effort to make our taxes even more burdensome on those who can least afford it.

— Nikki Nguyen, Federal Way

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