Collaboration in Civic Spheres

City Of Lake Forest Park Resolution 1202 Would Set Property Tax Hike Vote For August 17, 2010

by Matt Rosenberg March 28th, 2010

PUBLIC HEARING SCHEDULED FOR APRIL 22.

At its March 25, 2010 meeting, the city council of Lake Forest Park, Wash. heard the first reading of Resolution 1202 to seek voter approval on August 17, 2010 of Proposition 1 to hike the general property tax to $1.85 per $1,000 assessed valuation for 2011 through 2016. According to a staff memo on pp. 33-41 of the full meeting document packet, if approved the measure would add $138 per year ($11.50 per month) to the property tax bill of the average Lake Forest Park household. The memo also states there would be a public hearing April 22 on possible adoption of Resolution 1202, and then a decision made by the council on or before May 13 in order to place the measure on the August 17 (primary election) ballot in the city. A property tax backgrounder prepared by the city shows that (for the 2009-2010 biennial budget) the city property tax rate is $1.14 per $1,000 assessed valuation; and that 91 percent of property taxes collected from city residents are by other taxing bodies. According to city government, passage of Prop. 1 would allow the city to retain current levels of funding for public safety, parks, community and other government services, as well as to replenish the city’s “Rainy Day” fund and restore positions and services recently cut.

KEY LINK: City of Lake Forest Park Resolution 1202.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: According to the resolution, previous tax hike limits approved by voters statewide and the economic slump which is expected to continue have created an ongoing structural budget deficit that is expected to worsen in 2011 and coming years despite expenditure cuts of eight percent or $930,000 in the last year. There is nonetheless an expected shortfall of another $630,000 in 2011 and continued imbalances projected for the years following.

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