Have You Paid Your GOPHER TAX?

mazama-pocket-gopher-01b-rodgilbertCommissioners in Thurston county, Washington, have invented a new gopher tax, and it could be as high as $42,000 for new home buyers.

We The Governed reports:

The Thurston County Commissioners in collusion with the US Fish and Wildlife Service have created a novel method of extracting additional tax dollars from prospective new homeowners in Washington State.  According to public documents, Thurston County staff has proposed a new gopher tax, up to $42,000 for new homeowners who might consider building a home on or near land that might be inhabited by a rodent called the Mazama Pocket Gopher.  This gopher tax (called “mitigation” in planner-speak) would be in addition to any other fees, permits, taxes, or other costs that might be imposed on the construction of a new home in Thurston County, Washington.  For direct links to the concept files written and presented by Thurston County planning staff go here and here.

The $42,000 gopher tax is likely to become law later this year.   Two of the three Commissioners (Sandra Romero and Cathy Wolfe) have been supportive of the plan and the process for many years now.  In addition, the Thurston County Planning Department has been largely controlled by the US Fish & Wildlife Service for years – many of the county employees are entirely subsidized by USFWS grant money.  This has been a concern of property rights advocates for many years because local county staff won’t question their orders from USFWS when their jobs depend on grant dollars from that federal agency.

Another aspect of the gopher tax that has local observers concerned is the current plan for much of this money to be transferred to an out-of-state nonprofit organization.  Some of these gopher tax monies would stay in Thurston County, but it appears that after insiders get their cut, most of these funds would be sent to an out-of-state organization to manage local taxpayer-purchased land that could be set aside as bonus pocket gopher habitat.

Cliff Moore1Apparently the gopher is now considered an “endangered species”, but only in the Puget Sound area, as the animal is listed as “least concerned” on its wikipedia page.

County Manager Cliff Moore is said to be the brains (or lack there of) behind this, telling property owners to pound sand.


  1. Stuck_in_Ca says

    How much would you like to bet this will have no effect on the gopher population at all?

  2. SineWaveII says

    “current plan for much of this money to be transferred to an out-of-state nonprofit organization.”
    And there’s’ the real reason for it. The money will probably end being used for “gay rights” or to fight global warming or something.

    • meeester says

      you sound disdainful. Apparently you aren’t aware that the most important thing in the WORLD is where trannies pee etc.

  3. AmericanMom says

    The people who put together this law obviously do not have land/property filled with gopher holes and who have lost countless trees, shrubs and flowers due to the destructive varmints. This shows the people in both Washingtons are insufferable idiots.

  4. Buster000 says

    How bout just calling it the Thurston County Commissioner Weasel Tax and be done with it. Anyone?

  5. WTF says

    I prefer the Italian Mafia to the Government Mafia. The Italian Mafia only extorted from businesses, not everyone.

    • The Concerned Conservative says

      You’re wrong about the Mafia not going after individuals, but I get your point. The Mafia was more “honest” with its intimidation and greed than those idiots in Washington State!

  6. Jim says

    In “Caddyshack”, they wanted to kill all the golfers, what – oh, make that gophers.

  7. Voice_of_Reason says

    Ah, the wonders of using the government for “social justice”.

    It’s a great scam for extorting taxpayers and crushing people!

    • crisun says

      yes please some one do so they see what good this tax did NOT when all the gofers is dead