Fairness for taxpayers


Dear Friends,

Last week brought an important deadline in the Senate – on Friday, the 12 Senate policy committees had to wrap up work on the bills before them, meaning legislation either moved forward or headed to the sideline for the rest of the session. This coming Friday at 5 p.m. is the deadline for bills to come out of the Senate’s two fiscal committees – or they, too, are considered “dead” for the session. There is one exception to this deadline: Any bill that will be referenced in the budget remains alive until the budget is finalized later this session.

Earlier today, the Senate Majority Coalition Caucus welcomed two friends who were in town – Congressman Dan Newhouse and Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers. The two federal lawmakers briefed us on the very active agenda back in the other Washington, including steps being taken to reduce needless regulations and help job-creation. I am taking similar steps in Olympia to reduce the burden on job-creators, spur economic development and streamline the state-government bureaucracy employers have to go through. You can read more about those efforts below.

If there is anything I can do to help state government work better for you, please give me a call or send me an e-mail or letter. I appreciate your feedback and suggestions about issues that are important to you. If you are in Olympia while the Legislature is in session, I hope you will drop by to say hello.

Thank you for the honor of serving as your state senator.


New Sig

Sharon Brown
State Senator
8th District

Watch my video update

Policy cut off 2017: Dead or Alive?


Click here to watch this week's video!

Fairness for taxpayers

Tax Court

Taxpayers in Washington can face a lengthy and challenging process when disputing a tax assessment. To create a more open and fair process, I introduced a bill this week to create a statewide, elected Tax Appeals Division of the appeals court and eliminate the executive agency composed of political appointees that currently considers tax appeals.

Washington has a complex tax-appeals system that requires filing with different agencies depending on the type of tax. It also requires taxpayers to pay all taxes, fines, penalties and interest before seeking relief from a court.

This legislation would not only improve the appeals process but also enhance our state’s business climate and reputation as a good place to do business. It would level the playing field between the taxpayer and tax collector, and result in a more transparent, simple and fair process that helps property owners and small businesses.

In the News:

Reducing Business License Confusion

By Mike Richards, The Lens | Feb. 17, 2017

The Lens

Washington employers are often bogged down by the variety of licenses and regulations required to operate within multiple cities. That is what small business owners and advocates said during public testimony on SB 5777, which would simplify municipal general business licensing. The measure would add greater consistency across the board by requiring cities to issue permits from the same place.

…SB 5777’s prime sponsor is State Sen. Sharon Brown (R-8). She is joined by cosponsors including State Sens. Reuven Carlyle (D-36), Jan Angel (R-26), and Maralyn Chase (D-32).

Small business advocates testified in favor of SB 5777, saying it would eliminate uncertainty and reduce paperwork related to business operations.

Click here to read the full article.

Feb. 22, 2017


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Olympia, WA 98504-0408



Ways & Means 
(Vice Chair)

Agriculture, Water & Rural Economic Development 

Energy, Environment & Telecommunications