It may have taken nearly 80 years but Washington’s liquor monopoly has finally been repealed by voters. By a somewhat surprising margin, voters across the state are approving I-1183 60-40%.

Ending the state’s liquor monopoly has been a long time goal of the Washington Policy Center. It is exciting to see voters embrace the idea of focusing government efforts on strict enforcement of the public health, safety and drinking-age laws related to liquor sales, while leaving the business of distributing, pricing and selling liquor products to the competitive marketplace.

Washingtonians are also approving SJR 8206 to enhance the state’s rainy-day savings account. The measure is passing by a margin of 67-33%.

In January Washington Policy Center recommended that state leaders take additional steps to ensure that once the economy begins to improve, the state secures adequate reserves to help smooth out the ups and downs of revenue collections. The governor’s Budget Transformation Committee (on which WPC served) made a similar recommendation, saying the legislature should “enhance the Rainy Day Fund” and “include a mechanism to ensure extraordinary and unsustainable [revenue] growth is saved, rather than spent.”

By adopting SJR 8206 voters agreed and have taken an important step to getting the state off the boom-and-bust budget roller coaster.

Here are WPC’s summaries of these ballot measures:


[Reprinted from the Washington Policy Center blog; photo credit: Nelson Minar]