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Originally published Sunday, July 20, 2008 at 12:00 AM

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Tax increases brought in cash

Gregoire and the state Legislature have approved tax increases that total about $150 million a year and reinstated an estate tax that brings...

Gregoire and the state Legislature have approved tax increases that total about $150 million a year and reinstated an estate tax that brings in another $100 million annually.

Most of the money is dedicated to education.

In 2005, the state increased the cigarette tax by 60 cents per pack and the liquor tax by $1.33 per liter. About 72 percent of the cigarette tax funds Initiative 728, a measure approved by voters in 2000 to reduce class sizes in public schools. The rest of the money goes to other accounts.

Also in 2005, Gregoire and the Legislature reinstated the state estate tax, which had been invalidated earlier that year by the state Supreme Court. Money from that tax goes to public schools and higher education.

Voters overwhelmingly defeated an initiative in 2006 that would have repealed the estate tax.

— Andrew Garber

Copyright © 2008 The Seattle Times Company

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