Bipartisan group of senators asks Inslee to suspend upcoming payroll tax, deadline for buying long-term care coverage

OLYMPIA…Sen. Ann Rivers, R-La Center and a member of the Senate Health and Long-Term Care Committee, offered this statement today after a bipartisan group of senators asked Gov. Jay Inslee to suspend the payroll tax and exemption deadline connected with the state’s new long-term services and supports trust program.

“However well-intentioned the long-term care act may be, it has serious issues that can be addressed only by the Legislature – and should be addressed before workers begin seeing money taken from their paychecks. The number-one concern is that the law allows current workers just one chance in their lifetime to exempt themselves from the new tax, yet many are unable to exercise that choice at the moment, through no fault of their own.

“The majority leaders in the Legislature have not indicated an interest in dealing with these issues in a special session. Therefore, we are calling on the governor to step in and use his emergency authority to push the ‘pause’ button on the November 1 deadline for workers to purchase their own long-term care, and the tax collection that is to begin January 1. It’s the equitable thing to do, and I can think of no better use of the governor’s emergency powers.”

Click here to read the letter to the governor, signed by 23 senators.