Wednesday, November 6, 1991 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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Better 911 Approved, But Not Amendments


Voters approved by a wide margin a small telephone tax to pay for improved 911 emergency telephone service, but in voting at the bottom of a long ballot, surprisingly defeated three little-debated amendments to the state constitution.

Secretary of State Ralph Munro said he found it ironic that the proposed amendments went down because there was little or no organized opposition to what many viewed as technical changes.

Munro attributed their defeat to confusion about the vaguely worded ballot titles and a reluctance among infrequent voters to change the constitution.

The three measures were:

-- Senate Joint Resolution 8203, which would have simplified the process of changing county government through a home-rule charter.

-- House Joint Resolution 4221, which would have shifted some court cases, known as cases in equity, from superior courts to district courts.

-- House Joint Resolution 4218, which would have allowed counties to increase the number of superior-court commissioners.

Referendum 42 was the proposal to make Enhanced 911 dialing available statewide. This version of the emergency service flashes a caller's address and phone number on a dispatcher's screen. It is now available in eight counties, including King County.

Copyright (c) 1991 Seattle Times Company, All Rights Reserved.


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