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King County

Proposition No. 1
Parks Levy



The King County council has passed Ordinance No. 17568 concerning funding for parks, trails, recreational facilities and open space. This proposition would replace two expiring levies and fund maintenance and operations of the King County parks system; trails and open space for recreation, habitat and water quality; city parks; and zoo programs, all subject to citizen oversight. This proposition authorizes an additional property tax of $0.1877 per $1,000 of assessed value for collection in 2014 and authorizes increases by the annual percentage change in the CPI or the limitation in 84.55 RCW, whichever is greater, for five succeeding years. Should this proposition be:



If approved by voters, Proposition 1 would replace two expiring levies and authorize King County to levy an additional regular property tax to fund parks. The levy would be authorized for a six-year period with collection beginning in 2014 at a rate not to exceed $0.1877 (18.77¢) per $1,000 of assessed valuation. Annual increases in years two through six of the levy would be authorized in an amount equal to the change in the annual CPI or the limitation set forth in chapter 84.55 RCW, whichever is greater.

The levy proceeds would be divided as follows:

• 47% for maintenance and operations of King County’s parks system, with up to 1.3% of that amount for the recreation grant program;

• 39% for additional open space lands, natural areas, resource or ecological lands, right of ways for regional trails, improvement of parks system infrastructure, and development of trailhead facilities;

• 7% to cities in King County for local parks system projects; and

• 7% to the Woodland Park Zoological Society for environmental education emphasizing underserved populations, horticulture and maintenance of buildings and grounds, conservation and animal care for rare, threatened or endangered Pacific Northwest Species, and existing capital projects and campaigns.

If the proposition is approved, a county citizen oversight board would be established similar to the board that exists for the expiring levies. The board would consist of nine members, who would be nominated by County councilmembers, appointed by the County executive, and confi rmed by the council. The board would review all expenditures of levy proceeds and report annually to the executive, council, and regional policy committee.

For additional questions regarding this measure contact: Mary Bourguignon - Legislative Analyst 206-477-0873 •


The Parks Levy (Proposition 1) renews two expiring levies supporting more than 200 parks and 175 miles of regional trails. Our parks and natural areas provide recreational opportunities, preserve our quality of life, protect wildlife habitat, and safeguard clean air and water. Proposition 1 will:

• Keep our parks clean, open and safe;

• Complete missing links in regional trail system;

• Pay for critical repairs and maintenance;

• Fund local city parks and Woodland Park Zoo.

Our parks need to be protected, well maintained and well operated. By renewing the levies that provide the backbone of our parks funding, you help preserve and protect our regional treasures. Without Proposition 1, 70 percent of parks funding will run out at year’s end, jeopardizing our parks and trails.

Proposition 1 protects our green spaces and ensures this important natural legacy will be there for future generations.

Renewing the parks levy IS NOT A NEW TAX. This modest levy will cost the owner of a $300,000 home less than $5 per month.

Widely Endorsed: bipartisan support of King County Council; Mountains to Sound Greenway, Executive Dow Constantine, Washington Trails Association, Cascade Bicycle Club and others.

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More delinquent accounts will be added to the Assessor’s tax rolls if we remain victims of government’s inefficiency and inability to prioritize and cut spending. County and/or Seattle homeowners have been taxed additionally for an emergency response system, high school interscholastic athletics, automated fingerprint ID, public housing, youth offenders, veterans, sports stadiums and libraries where patrons now can view free online pornography during extended hours. Councilmembers use homeowners as an ATM and the fact business is conducted in air-conditioned offices in front of the American flag doesn’t make their decisions less odious. With Seattle voters approving waterfront seawall replacement, fewer citizens are going to find home ownership possible. Moreover, most state legislators warn that homeowners will be liable for cost overruns from the deep-bore tunnel. County government should deliver only essential services and find other ways to finance capital improvements.

Respected organizations like Washington Conservation Voters support Proposition 1 because they know that parks, trails and recreation areas are essential to our quality of life. They know the Parks Department has been proactive in building partnerships with the private sector that generate significant revenue to pay for our parks, easing costs for taxpayers. This levy provides over two thirds of the funding for maintaining and operating our parks system. Please vote YES on Proposition 1.

Statement submitted by: Charles Royer, Louise Miller and Terry Lavender

In King County, where criminal defense lawyers can become rich at taxpayer expense, some Metro bus drivers have been paid six-figure annual incomes while many college graduates have six-figure student loan debt. The Council says “yes” to renters and public employees, “no” to privatization and tax relief. Property taxes are too high and going higher because valuations have risen, again! Voters should use their ballots to proclaim “no more!”

Statement submitted by: John Shackleford

Simple Majority (RCW 84.55.050)

1256 en-US Production

TTY: Relay 711

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