September 21, 2023
The Justice Not Jails coalition now has their own Facebook Page! Follow them here
September 8, 2023
We do not have any additional coalition updates from this week. However, keep checking this page for upcoming opportunities to engage voters this fall! In the meantime, you can pledge to vote NO on Measure 1 down below.
August 29, 2023
We are joyously celebrating a huge coalition win today as Judge Tony Hazel ruled in favor of 9 petitioning organizations – requiring an amendment to the ballot language for Measure 1 so that voters are informed of the essential contents of this measure. The original language submitted by the County for this ballot measure did not mention anything about constructing a new jail building or expanding the current jail structures, despite statements from several Commissioners that a large portion of the funding is intended for that very purpose.
The new language increases transparency to the voters so that they know exactly what projects this money will go towards. The new ballot measure language explicitly states that the 0.2% tax increase we are being asked to vote on this fall will be used in part to fund “correctional infrastructure” which “includ[es] building and improving jails or correctional facilities…”.
You can view the final ballot measure language here.
This win is a result of the hard work, dedication, and unwavering commitment to justice and transparency of the 9 petitioning organizations: SCAR Spokane, Asians for Collective Liberation – Spokane, The Way to Justice, Health and Justice Recovery Alliance (HJRA), Tenants Union of Washington – Spokane, Compassionate Addiction Treatment, Revive Center for Returning Citizens / I Did the Time, Spokane NAACP and Peace & Justice Action League of Spokane (PJALS).
August 25, 2023
Today is the hearing on the legal challenge of the current ballot measure language before Judge Hazel at 1:30PM in the Spokane County Courthouse.
4:00pm Update: The first part of the hearing regarding the ballot measure language challenge was heard this afternoon. The court has entered into recess and will resume on Tuesday, August 29th to hear Judge Hazel’s final decision.
August 24, 2023
Ahead of tomorrow’s court hearing challenging the current ballot measure language, PJALS joined 9 other organizations in issuing this press release.
August 22, 2023
As you know, in our PJALS community we are committed to ending mass incarceration. We are facing a measure on the fall ballot asking voters across Spokane County to fund massive jail expansion, and we are dedicated to defeating it together! Right now, we are one of ten organizations that have legally challenge the deceptive ballot language put forward by the County Commissioners. We need Judge Hazel to know that our community not only shows up for racial equity and community safety, but explicitly denounces the deceptive nature of the current ballot language in an attempt to build new jails.
About Ballot Measure 1
When ballots arrive in our mail boxes in October, Spokane County voters will be asked to approve a 0.2% sales tax increase to fund two new jail buildings and other unspecified programs. Over the next 30 years, around $1.7 billion will be raised by this sales tax. 40% will go to the individual cities in Spokane County, and the rest will go directly to the county. The massive jail expansion that Commissioners Kerns, Kuney, and French are pushing for will suck hundreds of millions of dollars away from other needs. That is why we are saying NO to Measure 1!
Official Ballot Measure Language
Measure No. 22-0824
Two-tenths of one percent sales and use tax for criminal justice, public safety, correctional infrastructure, and behavioral health purposes.
The Board of Spokane County Commissioners adopted Resolution No. 22-0824 concerning sales and use tax increase pursuant to RCW 82.14.450.
If approved, the County may impose an additional 0.2% county-wide sales and use tax commencing April 1, 2024, and terminating December 31, 2054, to be used by county, cities, and towns within Spokane County for criminal justice, public safety, behavioral health, and including building and improving jails or correctional facilities provided in Resolution No. 22-0824.
Should this measure be approved?
Yes ……………………………………. [ ]
No ……………………………………. [ ]