Afternoon Jolt: Zoos, Aquariums, and Loopholes—Oh My!

By Afternoon Jolt January 25, 2011

Today's Loser: State Representative Reuven Carlyle (D-36, Queen Anne, Ballard, Magnolia).

According to The Olympian, a bill sponsored by State Rep. Reuven Carlyle (D-36) would exempt zoos and aquariums from paying the sales tax and the business and occupation tax, keeping them in business for all the kiddies (when they're not jumping adorably and holding campaign signs, that is).

Just last week, we gave Carlyle mass props last week for his work to close tax loopholes as an alternative to raising revenue for the catastrophic state budget. It seems that Carlyle's judicious loophole-hunting doesn't extend to zoos and aquariums.

Spokesman for SEIU 775 Adam Glickman slammed Carlyle on the proposed recreational spending:
“I took 5 kids to the Woodland Park Zoo on Saturday, and the animals all seemed pretty healthy and well-fed, which is more than you can say for hundreds of thousands of low-income seniors and children under the proposed cuts to services... [it's] hard to imagine how this is a high priority when we’re cutting kids off health care and slashing home care services for vulnerable seniors and people with disabilities.”

(For PubliCola's coverage of cutting off health care and slashing home care services, click here and here.)

Rep. Carlyle did not immediately return calls for comment, but he told Jordan Schraeder at the Olympian that "some tax exemptions make 100 percent perfect sense."

Today's Winner: Children of state legislators who enjoy the occasional outing to a zoo or aquarium.
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