County’s proposed $150,000 ‘litter fee’ targets newspaper in Vancouver, Washington

A Clark County (Wash.) official wants to make local newspapers with circulation of over 28,500 — there’s only one! — pay an annual “litter fee” of $150,000.

Lou Brancaccio, editor of the Columbian in Vancouver, Washington, calls this “goofball stuff” from county environmental services director and state senator Don Benton.
The editor tells his readers in his Saturday column:

[Benton has] designed his paper waste tax in a way that it would hit newspapers but the criteria is so specific it would only hit The Columbian. The small weekly in Battle Ground, The Reflector – for example – would be safe. (The county just took the legal ad account away from The Columbian and gave it to the Reflector.)

What a surprise.

If this were grade school someone would take Benton out back and give him a good spanking!

* Editor’s column: The M&M Boys and the “Godfather” (
* County considers fee hikes to pay for settlement (